May 14, 2022

Rain plan in effect as of May 11 – all scheduled commencement activities will be held indoors. Please see the map below for more information. Complete instructions have been emailed to all graduates.

Commencement Live Stream

Commencement at Christopher Newport is a nontraditional, multifaceted event that features the defining traditions associated with being a Captain – the grand processional on the Great Lawn, the penny toss, graduate hooding, departmental receptions, the faculty gauntlet and much more. However, unlike traditional ceremonies, where guests sit in the hot sun for hours, too far away from the stage to see anything, our ceremony allows graduates and their guests to experience commencement together, up close and personally.

Commencement is organized into two participation blocks: Silver and Blue. The Silver block is on campus from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and includes graduates from the College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences and Graduate Studies. The Blue block is on campus from 1:30-6 p.m. and includes graduates from the Colleges of Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences, and the Luter School of Business.

While there may be two different time blocks, graduates and guests are welcome to enjoy as much of the day on campus as they choose. There will be plenty to do and people to see and celebrate with! Event zones will be set up across campus featuring different experiences and traditions that graduates and guests can walk between and participate in together – at their leisure and in any order.

There are only two time constraints during the day:

  • The processional of graduates leads off the morning and afternoon blocks. The silver block processional will begin at 8:15 a.m. and the blue block processional will begin at 1:35 p.m.
  • Each graduate walks across the stage at a specific time during their college’s ceremony to receive their diploma cover. Graduates will select this time when they register for commencement in April.

Commencement will be a day filled with celebration, music, multiple family photo opportunities and plenty of poignant and unforgettable moments. We can't wait to see you there!

Map Link
96th Commencement Rain Plan Rain Plan

If you have any questions, please contact University Events at

Important notice regarding COVID-19 for event attendees:
An inherent risk of exposure to harmful pathogens like COVID-19 exists where people gather for events such as this one. Due to the contagious nature of COVID-19, Christopher Newport University requests that all attendees follow the posted guidelines while participating in the event. By choosing to attend this event, you are acknowledging the risks, your willingness to assume those risks and your agreement to abide by the applicable health and safety measures that are in place at the time of this event.

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