Ceremony Information & Schedule

Graduates, please read the following information thoroughly:

To participate in the commencement ceremony and receive a diploma, your tuition bill must be paid in full by April 10, 2015.

Graduates assemble at the Graham Athletic Center at 8:00 a.m. in caps and gowns. The tassels on the mortar board should be on the right side.


Graduates are required to arrive dressed in their cap and gown and any additional pre-approved academic regalia (i.e. honors cords, society cords, etc.) Graduates who do not arrive in cap and gown will not be permitted to participate in Commencement ceremony. Extra caps and gowns will not be available.

Bachelor of Arts candidates: The tassels of your cap should be on the RIGHT side of your head. Master of Arts candidates: The tassels of your cap should be on the LEFT side of your head.

8:00 a.m. Graduates must check-in with staff at the entrance to the Graham Athletic Center. Upon checking-in, you will be given a card with your name and placement number. Placement numbers are assigned alphabetically and may not be changed.

8:30 a.m. Graduates are required to assemble on their placement numbers for attendance and procession into the Graham Athletic Center. It is extremely important that you remain on your placement number once attendance has been taken. This is the order in which you will be called to receive your diploma.

Graduates who arrive late, who are not present during attendance, or who have left from their placement number will risk being excluded from Commencement ceremony.

8:45 a.m. Procession into Graham Athletic Center. Procession will be led by Faculty Marshals. It is very important that you follow the direction of the Faculty Marshals.

9:00 a.m. Commencement ceremony begins! 

Once graduates arrive inside the Graham Athletic Center, be sure that you have a seat and that no spaces are left empty. You will remain standing for Invocation. Men should remove their caps for Invocation and Benediction. Following the welcome from the President and the Board of Trustees and Alumni, speakers, and the conferral of honorary degrees, the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty will call graduates by name in placement number order. Master of Arts candidates will be called first, followed by Bachelor of Arts candidates. The first standing row should proceed as directed by the Faculty Marshal.

When your name is called, advance onto the stage towards the President. Receive your diploma with your LEFT hand, shake hands with your RIGHT, and then proceed across the stage towards the opposite end of the row from where you started. The line of graduates will continually move up so that each graduate returns to their original seat.

Graduates should remain standing until all graduates have been called. Upon signal from the President, shift your tassels to the opposite side of your cap.

Graduates should stand as directed by the Faculty Marshals and prepare for recessional from the Graham Athletic Center. The order of recessional is as follows: Speakers, Board of Trustees, Faculty, Master of Arts graduates, Bachelor of Arts graduates.

Immediately following the ceremony, a reception will be held at the Campus Inn for graduates and their guests.

Important Reminder: Whittier College policy does not permit the possession or drinking of alcohol at check-in or at the Graham Athletic Center. Any violation of this policy will result in your IMMEDIATE REMOVAL from Commencement ceremony.


All students participating in Commencement ceremony will receive a personalized diploma cover on stage. Students who have graduated will also receive their official diploma on stage, provided it has not already been issued to them.

Diplomas will not be issued to any graduate who has an outstanding hold or balance. Please make proper arrangements to resolve any outstanding holds or balances prior to Commencement.