Rain Plan

The University prefers to hold commencement exercises outdoors, even when it is raining (bring rain gear). Tickets are not required for an outdoor commencement. However, in the event of inclement weather, such as a severe thunderstorm, the commencement exercises will be held inside the Freeman Center Field House. Each degree candidate will receive six rain tickets for the indoor commencement.

Due to the limited seating capacity of the Freeman Center and the need to adhere to safety and fire code regulations for indoor assemblies, ticketing is strictly enforced.

NOTE: All guests who enter the Field House must have a ticket. Infants not in a carrier are the only exception to needing a rain ticket to enter the field house.

At rehearsal, degree candidates participating in commencement exercises will receive six rain tickets for their guests. It is the responsibility of the degree candidate to ensure these tickets are in the possession of those who will be using them on the morning of Commencement, before the graduate enters the Freeman Center Field House.

If the degree candidates are unable to attend rehearsal and receive rain tickets, they must submit a request to Their names will then be placed on the “Rain Ticket Pick-Up” list, and the degree candidates will be able to pick up their tickets in person on Saturday, May 13, beginning at 7 a.m. in the Peebles Theatre lobby in the Ferguson Center. Please bring ID when picking up rain tickets. Guests, including those with special needs, must have a rain ticket to attend commencement exercises in the Freeman Center.


  • Degree candidates assemble at the Freeman Center at 8 a.m.
  • Doors to the Freeman Center will open to ticketed guests at 8:30 a.m.
  • Families and guests should be seated by 9:45 a.m.
  • The faculty processional will begin at 10 a.m. There will be no student processional.
  • Degrees are conferred at the ceremony; diplomas are picked up after the ceremony in the David Student Union Ballroom. Only graduates are permitted in the Ballroom for diploma pick-up.
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