The College Graduation Ceremony celebrates the achievements of the graduating seniors in the College of Arts and Sciences. Each participant's name is read as they cross the stage and receive the congratulations of the dean of the School, the dean of the College, faculty, fellow students, friends and family.
Watch a rerun of the 2022 College Graduation Ceremony held on May 15th, 2022.
Guest Speaker, Amna Nawaz, C’01, Chief Correspondent and Primary Substitute Anchor for PBS NewsHour
Student Speaker, Oliver Kaplan, C’22
- Be sure to download a picture of your GradPass (the QR code will be scanned to announce your name and project it onto the Jumbotron; you should have received this by email).
- Arrive at lineup area outside of Franklin Field at 5:30pm.
- Grads process onto Franklin Field in 4 lines; each line is identified by color (blue, green, yellow, pink). Find the line listed on your GradPass, then find your major flag and get in line (marshals will be there to assist). Stay in line - if you wind up in a different line, your name will NOT be called with your major.
- The procession sets off at 6:20pm and will arrive on the field at 6:30pm. Remember that it takes some time for 1600 graduates to line up and move into position.
- When you are asked to stand and get in line to cross the stage, have your GradPass ready to be scanned.
- Photographs will be taken as you cross the stage. Please see the "Photography" section below for more information.
- The ceremony will conclude with a singing of "The Red and Blue" at roughly 9:15pm. Please be respectful of your fellow graduates and stay in your seats until the ceremony concludes.
The College recommends that ceremony guests:
- Wear low heels. The stands are very steep.
- Wear sunglasses. Guests will be facing west during sunset.
- Guests are not permitted in the student assembly area or the student seating area.
- The ceremony will be held at Franklin Field rain or shine. The stadium is not covered.
- Gates open at 5:30 pm. Guests enter at the Southeast corners of Franklin Field.
- Guests are asked to meet their party away from Franklin Field at approximately 9:30 pm.
- There will be a live webcast of the ceremony.
Dangerous Weather Plan
In the event of dangerous weather (continuous downpour and lightning), an announcement will be posted here. In this event, the College graduation ceremony will be moved to the Palestra on the north side of Franklin Field.
Unfortunately, seating in the Palestra is quite limited. Graduating seniors can get two tickets online. No one will be admitted to the Palestra without a ticket. For those who cannot attend, a live stream of the graduation ceremony will be available at the top of this webpage.
Some seating for the College Graduation ceremony is available for guests in wheelchairs or with limited mobility. Tickets are required for special seating and are limited. If a guest requires special seating, please complete the Request Accessible Seating for Guests online form by April 15.
Special needs seating for the University Commencement is coordinated through the Office of the University Secretary, 215.898.7369, and can be requested using the online form after March 1.
Questions regarding the College Graduation ceremony can be directed to the College Office at 215.898.6341
Students must wear their cap and gown on Sunday for the College Graduation and on Monday for the University Commencement and should arrive at the ceremonies already robed.
To wear the hood and mortarboard properly:
- Put hood on over head with velvet side up and with small tapered end in front.
- If hood has a cord and button, attach the hood neck cord over shirt button before closing gown, to prevent hood from riding against neck.
- Obtain assistance to secure cord across the back to keep the back of hood together.
- The PENN colors are turned outward to show the red and the blue.
- The mortarboard should be worn level on your head and not set back. Put the tassel on the right of the mortarboard until University Commencement on Monday.
The following is also recommended:
- Do not wear high heels.
- Wear sunglasses. Students will be facing west during sunset.
- Do not bring personal items that are not intended to be carried during the entire ceremony. After crossing the stage, students many not return to the same seat.
- If it's very hot, wear light-weight clothes under the academic robe.
Official photography will be provided by ProPics. Professional photographers will take pictures of each graduate as they cross the stage. These photos will be available for purchase shortly after the ceremony.