University Commencement is the Columbia-wide ceremony in which degrees are officially conferred. All of the University’s schools participate in this event.
All students who wish to participate in University Commencement must register online by Friday, April 19 at http://columbiacommencement.universitytickets.com. For more information, see the Guest Tickets section.
The ceremony also recognizes recipients of honorary degrees as well as the Columbia alumni medal and outstanding teaching awards. The Commencement speaker is traditionally the president of the University.
- Eligibility to Participate
- Ceremony Details and Instructions
- Guest Tickets
- Additional Ceremony Information
Doctoral Student Eligibility Requirements
All D.M.A. or Ph.D. candidates who received their degree in October 2012 or February 2013 or who will receive their degree in May 2013 or October 2013 are invited to participate in University Commencement. Please note that doctoral degrees will not be awarded until dissertations have been deposited.
Master's Student Eligibility Requirements
Master's students in the following categories are invited to participate in University Commencement:
- October 2012 graduates
- February 2013 graduates
- May 2013 graduates
- Students who expect to graduate in October 2013 and who have submitted the Graduation Ceremonies Participation Petition (.pdf); for more information, see the M.A. Convocation page.
Wednesday, May 22, 2013, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Low Plaza, Columbia University
Graduates: Academic regalia and your CUID are required. Degree candidates should arrive at the designated assembly point in front of Dodge Hall and Lewisohn Hall by 9:30 a.m.
Guests: Tickets are required and can only be obtained in advance (by the graduating student). General admission gates are on 114th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue; gates will open at 8:30 a.m. Please check the forecast and bring water and wear sunblock if necessary.
Accessible Entrance for Guests with Disabilities/Limited Mobility
Guests with disabilities, limited mobility, or elderly requiring assistance should enter campus at 116th Street and Amsterdam Avenue. Disability Services staff will be on hand to assist guests with seating, wheelchair accessibility, sign-language interpretation, and closed-caption video of the University Commencement exercises.
Parties of up to four persons will be accommodated in the disabilities accessible seating area. Please note: larger parties should make plans to meet at a designated location after the main ceremony is completed (at approximately 12:30 p.m.) to reconnect with members seated in the accessible area.
If you have any questions or concerns please contact the Columbia Office of Disability Services at (212) 854-2388, or email@example.com.
You should plan ahead of time where to meet your family and friends afterward. The University expects 30,000 students and guests to attend - even if you have cell phones it is difficult to locate people.
Commencement is held outdoors, rain or shine. Be prepared; if the weather is seasonably warm you should remember sunblock and water.
For more information visit the University Commencement website.
All students who wish to participate in University Commencement must register online by Friday, April 19 at http://columbiacommencement.universitytickets.com.
Tickets are required for guests who wish to attend University Commencement (graduates in academic regalia will not need a ticket).
You must reserve your tickets by Friday, April 19.
Please note that you will receive your full allotment of up to three tickets as long as you register by April 19 and that you may only access the online ticket-reservation system once; consequently, you may wish to ensure that your guests' plans are finalized before reserving tickets. View step-by-step instructions for the ticket reservation system here (.pdf).
If you do not plan to attend the Commencement ceremony, there is no need to register for tickets. Please be considerate to your fellow graduates and reserve only the number of guest tickets that you intend to use.
If you are unable to register online through the system, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that it may take some time to verify your eligibility to participate in graduation ceremonies.
Picking Up Reserved Tickets
You may pick up your reserved tickets from Monday, April 29 to Tuesday, May 7 (excluding Saturday, May 4 and Sunday, May 5) from 9:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. in 107 Low Library. Please note that you must have your Columbia ID card to pick up tickets.
Please note: The selling or buying of University Commencement tickets is strictly prohibited. Please be cautious of offers to sell or buy Commencement tickets. Tickets hold no official resale value and may be an unauthorized copy, therefore deemed unusable and denied on University Commencement day. Commencement tickets are solely for the purpose of allowing the friends and relatives of graduating students to attend the ceremony. All unwanted tickets should be returned to GSAS if a graduate or guest(s) no longer plan to attend University Commencement.
Transportation and Parking
The Visiting section of the Columbia website provides driving directions, information on public transportation, and a list of nearby parking garages. Please note that parking is extremely limited during Commencement week.
Valuables and Baby Strollers
Please do not bring valuables to Convocation, since there is no place to keep them safely. GSAS cannot be held responsible for lost or stolen items. Strollers will not be allowed in the seating areas on South Lawn. Those who leave strollers outside the gates do so at their own risk.