Frequently Asked Questions
Are tickets necessary for Commencement or Convocations?
Tickets are not required for Commencement or Convocations. There is no limit on the number of guests per degree candidate.
See Tickets & Seating.
What is the difference between a Convocation and Commencement?
Syracuse University schools and colleges host celebratory Convocations on the Saturday before Commencement to individually recognize degree candidates and to present special awards. Convocations are followed by receptions, where students and families have the opportunity to mingle with deans and faculty. See schedule at Convocations & Receptions.
Commencement is the all-university ceremony in the Carrier Dome on Sunday, beginning at 9:30 a.m. and ending approximately at noon. The Syracuse University Chancellor and President ceremoniously confers degrees at the Commencement ceremony.
What are the qualifications for participation in Commencement?
Bachelor’s and master’s degree candidates who plan to complete their coursework between December 2016 and by August 2017 are invited to participate in the May 2017 Commencement ceremonies. Under extenuating circumstances, candidates who do not meet this requirement may petition their home college(s) for permission to participate.
Doctoral candidates must have completed their degrees by April 24, 2017 to participate.
It is the student’s responsibility to know and fulfill all degree requirements for graduation. Participation in Convocation and Commencement ceremonies does not indicate that degree requirements have been completed.
How can I receive the Commencement information booklet?
The Office of Special Events mails the Commencement information booklets in March to SU bachelor’s and master’s candidates who complete the “File Diploma Request” process on MySlice by February 10, 2017; and to the parents of those undergraduate students who have filed their Diploma Request on MySlice; and to all eligible SUNY ESF students.
Doctoral candidates are sent the Commencement mailing based on eligibility provided by the Graduate School.
Where can SU students complete the “File Diploma Request” process?
SU undergraduates and graduate students may file the Diploma Request online at MySlice . Doctoral students should also file on MySlice, but that filing is not used for Commencement mailing purposes.
When are diplomas given out?
Diplomas are mailed to all degree recipients after the certification and awarding process is complete. Diplomas are sent to the permanent address unless a different address was specified when filing the Diploma Request on MySlice.
I am an international student and I would like to invite a family member from a foreign country to attend graduation ceremonies. How can I get an invitation letter?
You may print this Commencement announcement 2017 that can be used to provide information about Commencement. If you need further assistance, please visit SU Slutzker Center for International Services .
What hotels are in the area?
Visit Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau for hotel and housing options. Central New York hotels generally require a two-day reservation during Commencement weekend. It is important to book early since area hotels often sell out.
Is campus housing available for guests?
Rooms will be available in residence halls on north campus for a weekend package only. Reservations for these rooms can be made beginning March 1.
When and where do degree candidates obtain caps and gowns?
All degree candidates participating in Convocations and Commencement are required to wear academic regalia. The Syracuse University Bookstore coordinates cap and gown distribution. No pre-ordering is necessary.
Undergraduate degree candidates will be provided recyclable gowns free of charge the week prior to Commencement at distribution sites.
ESF cap and gown distribution will take place two weeks prior to Commencement.
Master’s candidates can purchase their caps, gowns, and hoods at one of the distribution sites the week prior to Commencement.
Doctoral candidates rent their caps, gowns and hoods at the distribution site.
See Caps & Gowns.
Where can I park during Commencement Weekend?
Free parking is available in campus lots and garages on Saturday and Sunday of Commencement weekend.
On Sunday, additional parking is available at Manley Field House with shuttle service to and from the Carrier Dome. Handicap accessible shuttle buses will also run between Manley Field House and the Carrier Dome on Sunday.
See Parking & Buses.
Do you offer seating for guests in wheelchairs or with mobility limitations?
Guests in wheelchairs or with mobility limitations may sit in accessible sections of the Carrier Dome during the Sunday, May 14, Commencement ceremony. Passes are required for these sections and can be requested by filling out and submitting a Special Needs Request Form, available after March 1, on the disability page of this website. Requests must be filed by May 5, 2017; passes will be mailed to you prior to Commencement.
It is not necessary to prearrange seating for special needs guests for Saturday Convocations. Ushers at each venue will assist you.
What time should degree candidates arrive for Commencement?
Commencement is on Sunday, May 14, 2017. Students should arrive before 9 a.m. and enter at Gate D.
Where can I order graduation announcements?
Personalized graduation announcements may be ordered at the SU Bookstore. Generic announcements are also available for purchase.
When are senior photos taken?
Typically during the fall semester. For details, see The SU Yearbook. Watch for an email from Student Activities with the December 2016 and January 2017 photo dates.
Where can families and guests eat during Commencement Weekend?
More information about on and off-campus dining, as well as a link to area restaurant options, will be posted at a later date.