Commencement Ceremony: Day-Of Guide

Fall 2020 Commencement Ceremonies

Given the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Purdue University Northwest is still evaluating possibilities for December commencement. No final decision has been made. We will update this space with more details when we have them.

General Information for Graduates and Their Guests

Ceremonies last approximately 90 minutes. Participants will not be permitted to leave the commencement venue until the ceremony is concluded.

Commencement ceremonies will be streamed “live” on the PNW website and in the Room with A View on the first floor of the Student Union and Library Building for those guests who were not able to obtain a ticket.

Commencement ceremonies will be streamed “live” on the PNW website.

Have commencement questions? Feel free to contact the Graduation Coordinator at (219) 989-2334 or at

You must arrive wearing your cap and gown. Please leave all personal belongings (such as coats, purses or bags) with your guests prior to the ceremony.

In compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA), any candidate who might require special accommodations to participate in the commencement ceremony should call Noemi Elizalde, the Graduation Coordinator, at (219) 989-2334 or email to make appropriate arrangements.

Honor cords will be presented to participants who qualify for graduation “With Distinction” or “With Highest Distinction” upon check-in. Please note that only those receiving an undergraduate degree are eligible to graduate with honors.

Keep the diploma cover that is given to you during the commencement exercises. Once you receive your diploma from the Office of the Registrar, you may insert it into the diploma cover.

Learn More About Your Diploma

All guests including children (infants and toddlers) must have a ticket in order to attend the commencement ceremony. Strollers and infant carriers are not permitted in the Commencement venue.

There will be limited mobility seating in the venue for guests that require special accommodations. On the day of the commencement ceremony please see any staff member in a gold robe for assistance. All specially seated guests must have an admission ticket, supplied by the candidate.


Conferring of Degrees

The order of commencement exercises will be as follows:

  • Academic Procession
  • Address to the Candidates
  • Conferring of Degrees
  • Recession for Platform Party

Master’s candidates will have their degrees conferred while they are standing at their seats. When the signal is given, you will follow your marshal to the stage. As you come to the stage-right lectern, the presenter marshal will call your name. Proceed across the stage to receive your diploma. When you return to your seat, please be seated.

Undergraduate candidates will be presented to the Board of Trustees by school. The dean for each college will call for the baccalaureate candidates to stand and then call for the associate candidates to stand. Once candidates in all colleges have been presented, degrees are conferred.

The presenter marshal will call the graduates to come forward as he asks the marshals to escort them to the platform to receive their diplomas. The narshals will lead the graduates, by college, from the seating area in single-file procession order to the stage. When you come to the stage-right lectern on stage, hand your reader card to the presenter marshal. Once your name is called, you will proceed across the stage and receive your diploma. When you return to your seat, please be seated.

When all diplomas have been awarded and the graduates are back in their seats, the representative of the senior class will speak. There will be a recessional for the platform party. Please remain seated until the music stops.

You and your guests are invited to celebrate with us at the Alumni Reception following the ceremony. More information will be posted here when it is available for the upcoming commencement.

Questions about participating in a Commencement ceremony?

Contact the Office of the Registrar.

Phone: (219) 989-2334

Questions about participating in a Commencement ceremony?

Contact the Office of the Registrar.

Phone: (219) 989-2334