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General Questions

When is May 2021 Commencement? 

May 2021 Commencement Ceremonies will be held the weekend of Friday, May 14th- Sunday, May 16th at Rupp Arena at Central Bank Center. 

Which day is my ceremony on? 

Click here for the ceremony schedule. 

Who can participate in the May 2021 Commencement? 

May 2021 graduates along with May, August, and December 2020 graduates are invited to participate. August 2021 graduates are invited to participate as well, but they may choose to participate in December 2021 Commencement instead. Registration closed on March 26th at 5 PM EST.

Are family and friends allowed to attend? 

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, each graduate will be allotted 4 tickets for guests. More information on ticketing will be provided at a later date.

Will I have to wear a mask to Commencement? 

Yes, masks and social distancing will be enforced for the health and safety of all attendees. 

Is any of May 2021 Commencement Virtual? 

Yes, a virtual component of the ceremonies will be available for any student or guest that cannot attend. After registration closes, each Graduate will receive an email with instructions on how to submit a photo and message that will be displayed on a slide with their name, primary college, and degree earned read by a pre-recorded orator. These slides will be available on the Virtual Commencement website the weekend of May 14th-May 16th. The in-person Commencement ceremonies will be live-streamed on the website as well for viewing.  

Will the Commencement Ceremonies be available to watch online? 

Yes, the May 2021 Commencement Ceremonies will be live-streamed for anyone to view from home. The link will be available via the Commencement website during the weekend. 

Am I required to participate in Commencement? 

Attendance at Commencement is not mandatory. All graduates are strongly encouraged to attend so that UK can recognize your achievement and your family and friends can share in your celebration.  

Is applying for your degree the same as registering for Commencement? 

No, applying for your degree is separate from Commencement. To reserve your spot, you must register via the Commencement website here. To apply for your degree, check your myUK or talk to your academic advisor. 

 

Regalia Questions

How can I purchase my cap and gown? 

Regalia can be ordered online here. Any order placed after April 19th is not guaranteed to be delivered by Commencement so please place your order ASAP.  It will also be available for purchase at the UK Bookstore in the Gatton Student Center and at Grad Salute. 

What is Grad Salute? 

Grad Salute is held by the Alumni Association and is the one-stop-shop for all your graduation needs. You will be able to purchase regalia, talk to Jostens about a class ring and invitation, and complete other items regarding your upcoming graduation. It is March 29th- March 31st at the Gatton Student Center. 

 

Ceremony Questions

Will I get to walk across the stage at Rupp Arena with my name read? 

Yes, each graduate will have the opportunity to walk across the stage to receive their diploma cover while their name is read over the speakers. 

Do I receive my actual diploma during Commencement? 

No, diplomas will be mailed to degree recipients approximately 90 days after graduation. In order to ensure delivery of your diploma, please make sure you have updated your permanent mailing address on the myUK portal. 

I am a graduate.  Where do I check in?   

Once you enter through the graduate entrance you will be guided by commencement staff to your check-in location.  Graduates will be seated after check-in and there will not be a processional. 

I am a doctoral graduate.  Will I be hooded on stage? 

To minimize contact and maintain social distancing, there will be no hooding at the ceremony. Graduates should wear their hood to the ceremony.   

How long will the ceremony last?  

The ceremony is expected to last approximately one to one and a half hours.  Graduates will not return to their seats after they walk across the stage, so graduates may not be there the entire time. 

What should I expect as a graduate? 

After graduates are recognized by crossing the stage, they will not return to their seats.  Instead, graduates will be guided to the photography area where they will have an opportunity to remove their facial covering for one photo before exiting the Arena.  

Will the ceremony be live-streamed?   

Yes, any guests who are unable to attend may view a live-stream of the ceremonies.  A link to the ceremonies will be listed on the commencement website the week of commencement.  

 

Ticketing Questions

How will Commencement participants receive the four tickets allotted for their guests? 

Commencement participants will receive direction on obtaining tickets through email once the tickets are ready to be distributed. 

Can commencement participants be allotted more tickets? 

Commencement participants are allotted a maximum of four tickets.  All ceremonies will be live-streamed so guests who are not able to attend in person may watch online. 

Do tickets allow guests to sit anywhere in the venue? 

Seats are assigned.  All four tickets are in a pod (a group of four assigned seats).  All pods are physically distanced by six feet.  Participants guests will sit in their assigned seats within the pod.  Guests are asked to begin leaving once their graduate exits the stage.  Please do this quietly with respect to other graduates and guests.  

Do children need tickets?

Children 2 and under do not require tickets if they are sitting in the laps of family members during the event.

How will participants living out of town receive their tickets? 

All tickets are mobile and will be shared by the graduate electronically. Commencement participants will receive information on obtaining their four tickets in the coming weeks.  

Do graduates need tickets? 

No, graduates will enter through the graduate entrance (signage will be available) off High Street and will not need a ticket.  

Can I share tickets with another graduate if I'm not using all 4?

No. Tickets are assigned in groups of 4 for the health and safety of each family. Tickets are not individual and are assigned a seat to ensure this is followed. 

 

Parking Questions

Where should graduates and guests park? 

The Rupp Arena at Central Bank Center parking lot is located on West High Street. Please plan to remove all vehicles promptly after the ceremony to make space for guests and graduates attending the following ceremonies.   

 

Please contact the Commencement Graduate Assistant at commencement@uky.edu if you have any further questions.