Frequently Asked Questions

We urge you to read the information on UC Davis' Commencement website for answers to many of your questions.

When and where are the commencement ceremonies?

See dates on the home page of the commencement website

The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, and the College of Letters and Science have more than one ceremony. All undergraduate ceremonies take place in the Pavilion. Click the appropriate college below to locate the ceremony time by major:

Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

Letters and Science

Who is eligible to participate in the ceremony?

Any student who received a degree in September 2016, December 2016, or March 2017 and who has not already participated in the December (undergraduate) commencement ceremony, is eligible and welcome to participate in Spring commencements.

Additionally, any student who expects to receive a degree in June 2017 or September 2017 AND has completed 160 units by the beginning of the Spring 2017 Quarter, is also considered eligible and welcome to participate in Spring commencements.

While undergraduate students graduating in September 2017 or December 2017 may participate in Spring 2017 commencements, you are encouraged to participate in the Fall 2017 commencement, closer to the completion of your studies. Typically a smaller ceremony, the fall commencement allows for students to invite more guests.
For undergraduates to officially graduate, you must file a graduation application online for the term in which you will graduate during the appropriate filing periods.

If I'm not eligible but still want to request to participate in the ceremony, what do I do?

You can submit your petition by logging on to the registration site

Approval of petitions is based on capacity, units completed, and reasoning.  Decisions will be sent via email after the registration deadline. Petitions received after the registration deadline will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that we cannot guarantee the numbers of tickets for these requests.

How many tickets will I receive? How may I apply for extra tickets if available?

With the exception of Graduate Studies, admission tickets are REQUIRED for each guest except for children under the age of 2.  Undergraduate students who have registered to participate by the April 14, 2017 deadline should receive the number of tickets listed in the table below.

College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences Up to 6 tickets
College of Biological Sciences Up to 4 tickets
College of Engineering Up to 7 tickets
College of Letters & Science UP to 5 tickets

Undergraduate Ceremonies Extra Ticket Process: 

Extra tickets may be requested on the commencement registration site using the "Extra Ticket Petition" tab to submit your request. NOTE: Ticket allocation is predetermined based on the anticipated graduate attendance for each college. Likewise, the amount of extra tickets available for distribution cannot be determined until after the close of registration.

The last day to request extra tickets is Friday, May 19, 2017.

University policy prohibits the selling of commencement tickets for money or for any commercial value. Violation will result in referral to Student Judicial Affairs.

When will I receive my tickets?

Tickets for undergraduate commencements are electronic.  Registered students will receive an email 2 weeks prior to their ceremony with instructions for printing your tickets at home. 

Please note that ticket allocation is based upon the actual number of students participating in the ceremony, capacity of the venue, and reasons for need. Your graduation from UC Davis is a major milestone in your life, and we wish that we could issue an unlimited amount of tickets for your loved ones. However, we must accommodate some guests for all of our students. Should extra tickets become available, information will be updated.


What do I wear?

Graduates will need to rent a cap and gown through the UC Davis Stores

There are a limited number of cap and gown awards available. You will find the application, more informaiton and instructions here. Deadline to apply is April 23, 2017.

We Are Aggie Pride administers the award program and once your application has been received, the Awards Director will contact you with a decision. If you are selected you will be contacted. If you have any questions about your application, you may contact

I think I am an honors/honors candidate and/or department citation recipient. Will my name be announced or listed? How can I get a cord or stole?

If you are graduating in March or September, final calculations for honors are listed in the commencement program (June or December, respectively) as Honors, High Honors, and Highest Honors. If you are graduating in June or December, estimated calculations for honors are listed in the commencement program (June or December, respectively) as Candidates for Honors, High Honors, and Highest Honors. Department citations are only awarded and listed in the June commencement program. Due to various circumstances, (i.e. when you officially graduate, when you file to participate in commencement, if you receive a citation) your name may appear in consecutive ceremony programs (i.e. graduated in December, but received a citation in June).

Cords may be purchased at UC Davis Stores

Honors = Cum Laude = Blue/Gold
High Honors = Magna Cum Laude = Silver/Silver
Highest Honors = Summa Cum Laude = Gold/Gold

Some departments order their own cords/stoles to give to their students.

What time will the doors open?

The doors open one hour before the ceremony. 

If I participate in the ceremony, will my name appear in the commencement program?

Your name will appear in the Undergraduate Commencement Ceremony Program if:

  1. You graduated in March 2017 or will graduate in June 2017, OR
  2. You have registered to participate online by the deadlines listed above.

For Graduate schools, check with your commencement coordinator or the appropriate website for information.

Will I receive my diploma at the commencement ceremony?

You may have your diploma mailed to you when it is ready, four months after the end of the quarter in which you completed your degree requirements. Domestic or international postage is free for your undergraduate diploma. If you choose not to have it mailed, please contact the Office of the University Registrar at (530) 752-3639 before visiting to ensure the diploma is ready. Remember, they take a minimum of four months to prepare. More information on diplomas and reprints can be found on the Registrar's webiste under Academic Records, Diplomas.

A certificate commemorating the ceremony is presented to each participant at commencement

What if I have completed a double major?

UNDERGRADUATES: You must indicate on the online registration form with which major you will walk and be seated.

Will photographs be taken of the students during the ceremony?

Photos taken by family or friends will be permitted from their seats or from the designated photo areas available during the ceremony. Tripods will NOT be allowed into the Pavilion or Mondavi Center. Photos may be taken outside of the Pavilion after the ceremony.

GradImages is the official photographer for our commencement. Proofs will be sent to your home and e-mailed within three to five days after graduation. After you register with GradImages, they will provide you with the information needed to deliver your proofs to you. Providing an accurate mailing and e-mail address will allow them to send your proofs to you on the first try. Pictures can be ordered online, by phone or by mail. GradImages can be contacted via their website.

Where do I meet to line-up for the ceremony and where do I sit?

For ceremonies at the Pavilion, students will assemble and line up by major outside on the field south of the Pavilion. You are not required to be in alphabetical order within the major. During the ceremony students will be seated on the main floor of the Pavilion.

For ceremonies at the Mondavi Center, please contact your commencement coordinator for line up location.

What if I am participating in the ceremony and have limited mobility or special needs?

Your college can offer special seating arrangements for candidates with mobility problems. If you have a hearing impairment, please contact Student Disability Services.  Please contact your commencement coordinator or Student Disability Services as far in advance as possible to explain your needs.

What if my guest has limited mobility or special needs?

A shuttle service is provided for guests with mobility problems at the Pavilion. The shuttle transports limited mobility guests to and from parking lots 25 and the parking structure to the north east entrance of the Pavilion.  A tent is outside the parking structure and the ARC Pavilion for elderly and disabled guests to sit while waiting for the shuttle and/or the Pavilion to open.  Limited mobility guests may enter the northeast entrance. Disabled seating sections are available for guests with limited mobility or who use a wheelchair (who may be accompanied by one other member of their party). There are reserved limited mobility sections in rows E & F in sections 226, 220, 213 and 207.

For those guests with limited/no hearing attending commencements in the Pavilion, assisted listening devices may be picked up in the Pavilion Guest Services Center (located at the NE Lobby corner in the Pavilion). Sign language interpreters will be signing at each ceremony.

Please note UC Davis does not provide wheelchairs.

Will the ceremony be shown on the Internet?

The ceremony is shown live and can be seen afterward on demand at

I'm a faculty member/administrative staff member participating in the ceremony. What do I need to know?

Please contact your commencement coordinator for your school or college to participate in the ceremony.

For UC gowns, caps, tassels and UC faculty hoods visit Distribution Services Caps and Gowns  For academic hoods from another university contact the UC Davis Stores

For questions or additional information, please contact your Commencement Coordinator.