General Information

Registration to participate in graduation ceremonies is available starting on Feb 1


Academic Dress

Cap and Gown Rental

UC Davis' commitment to sustainability is reflected in our choice of academic regalia for our graduates. The navy caps and gowns are made from EarthGrad fabric which is created from 100% recycled materials. The manufacturing of one rental gown saves approximately 74 plastic bottles from the landfill.

Graduates must wear appropriate apparel in order to participate in commencement ceremonies. Academic apparel may be rented from the UC Davis Stores. Gown rental includes the cap and tassel, and is available as an a la carte rental or as part of a Grad Pack, which includes select souvenir items. Gowns and Packs must be pre-ordered in advance online. Rental pricing is based on date of order.

  • Online Pre-Order is available from March 1 through the last ceremony date.
  • All a la carte rental pricing increases by $15.00 after May 1.
  • Please visit the UC Davis Stores website for more details and to access the Online Pre-Order System.

UC Davis Cap and Gown Awards

There is a limited number of cap and gown awards available. For the application and more information click here. Deadline for applying is April 23, 2017.

We Are Aggie Pride administers the award program and will review each application. Once your application has been received the Awards Director will contact you with a decision. If you have any questions, please contact the Award Director at

Grad Faire:

Tuesday, March 7 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm, ARC Ballroom A

Gown and Grad Pack Pickup - at the Pavilion

  • Wednesday, May 31, 9:00 am to 6:00 pm
  • Thursday, June 1, 9:00 am to 6:00 pm
  • Friday, June 2, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm

Late Gown Pickup - MU Campus Store, Lower Level

  • June 3 through June 16

    9:00 am - 5:00 pm Monday through Friday
    12:00 pm - 4:00 pm on Saturday
    Closed on Sunday

LATE Gown Pickup - Pro Shop, ARC Lobby

  • June 17 from 8 AM to 7 PM
  • June 18 from 8 AM to 2 PM

Gown Rental Fees:

Gown Rental Fees (based on date of payment):
Please note: Gown rental includes the gown, cap, and tassel

Bachelor gown rental $54.00
Master gown rental $56.00
Doctoral gown rental $60.00
Academic Hood (required for all post-graduate degree candidates) $25.00
Late Order Fee for all orders placed after May 1 $15.00

Note: Additional caps and tassels are available for individual purchase at the Pro Shop and Memorial Union store during Cap and Gown pickup. They cannot be pre-ordered.

See  UC Davis Stores for details and pack pricing. Save money by ordering your rental as part of a souvenir Grad Pack!

Returning Caps and Gowns

Gowns must be returned immediately following commencement, or to the collection station follwing ANY official commencement ceremony. The gown collection station will be located at your ceremony site.

Late Fee: Gowns not returned at the ceremony must be returned to the UC Davis Stores Memorial Union location by the first Monday following the ceremony, during regular store hours. Late return fees (beginning at $5.00 and increasing weekly) will be assessed begining the following Tuesday.

Purchase of Regalia

Rental apparel must be returned. For information and pricing of purchased apparel, please visit the  UC Davis Stores Website for pricing and information, or e-mail questions to the UC Davis Store’s Commencement Coordinator

Wearing Academic Dress

Academic dress is mandatory for graduates and the university reserves the right to refuse admission to students who do not comply with this requirement.

All Davis graduates wear UC Davis Blue gowns with Gold piping.

The bachelor's gown has pointed sleeves and at UC Davis is worn without a hood.

The cap is worn with the long point of the shell to the rear. Undergraduates who have not yet received a degree wear the tassel forward and to the right. After the degree is awarded, the tassel is shifted to the left. Those receiving postgraduate degrees wear their tassel to the left, signifying the possession of an academic degree. Master and doctoral candidates will also wear, or be hooded with, an academic hood depicting their degree and university.

It is customary for those wishing to demonstrate respect for their country to remove their caps during the national anthem or when the U.S. flag is passing. Lightweight clothing is usually worn under the gown.

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Accommodations/Visitor Links

Out of town guests are encouraged to make reservations for accommodations early as commencement events mean more people will also be visiting the area. Make reservations early, especially if you prefer to be in Davis, as local hotels will fill up fast. Lunch or dinner reservations at least two hours post ceremony end time is recommended because of traffic and parking volume. Check the sampling of local hotels in and around Davis as a place to start. Also, is a great resource to find local restaurants.

Admission to the Ceremony

UC Davis students, faculty, family and friends of graduates are welcome to attend commencement ceremonies as space allows. With the exception of the Graduate Studies commencement, admission tickets are REQUIRED for each guest (except infants and toddlers under the age of 2 years) for all ceremonies taking place in the Pavilion. Graduate Studies commencement does not require tickets.  Ceremonies for the professional schools are conducted in the Mondavi Center and require ALL guests, including babies in arms, to have a ticket.

Undergraduate students who have registered to participate through the website by April 14, 2017 deadline should receive highest number of allocated tickets.

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.

See chart below for ticket allocation by undergraduate college.  Students needing fewer than the number of tickets sent to them are strongly urged to return the extra tickets to their Dean's Office as soon as possible.  For those that cannot attend the ceremony, all commencements are webcast.

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 Tickets Process: Extra tickets may be requested on the commencement registration site by using the "Extra Ticket Petition" tab to submit your request. This is not an extra ticket guarantee and is based upon number of tickets available for distribution AFTER the close of registration.

Safety inspections by UC Davis Aggie Host Security Officer personnel are done as guests enter the Pavilion.  A safety inspection is a concurrent visual, bag, or pat-down check done with implied consent.  We screen for items to advocate for crowd safety.  We also inspect for restricted items based on venue or campus policy in addition to State and Federal law.

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

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The University Medal, as well as college and school medals are presented at each recipient's ceremony.

The University Medal is the highest university award given to a student completing his or her undergraduate work.  This gold medal is awarded to the outstanding graduating senior in recognition of scholastic excellence as well as superior achievement in all areas of university life. To learn more about the previous university medalists, visit the University Medalists website. 

In addition, each school and college may have its own prizes and awards presented.

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The ceremony typically last about two hours and will include short addresses by distinguished speakers, the conferring of degrees and the recessional. Mondavi and Pavilion doors open one hour before the ceremony.

The ceremony will begin promptly with the entry of candidates and academic procession. Members of the official party will sit on stage; candidates and faculty will be seated in chairs on the main floor facing the stage.

Each graduate will be presented on stage, receive a certificate and return to his or her seat. The stage party and faculty lead the recessional, followed by the graduates.

Specific directions for assembly will be distributed to registered students.

All ceremonies are webcast for your viewing pleasure.

Class Rings

Class rings are available throughout the academic year at the UC Davis Stores.

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Commencement Program

The UC Davis Commencement program is a keepsake and contains:

Names of students, who registered through their school or college website by the appropriate deadline, provided the student meets the eligibility requirements as indicated by their school or college.

Families and friends of the 2017 undergraduate candidates may preorder programs at the UC Davis Stores.  These programs may be picked up at the ARC Pro Shop on commencement day. No commencement programs are for sale in the UC Davis Stores. Graduates receive a complimentary program at the ceremony and the undergraduate programs are sold in the Northwest corner on Concourse level at the Pavilion before the ceremonies. Cost is $10.00.

If sufficient quantities of the program are available post ceremony, they will be available at the ARC Pro Shop.

Undergraduate candidates who cannot attend commencement may obtain copies of their commencement program by purchasing one online.

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Conduct During Commencement Ceremony

Commencement is a time to celebrate and enjoy your achievement. It is also a time to reflect on that achievement and to acknowledge the help and support provided by family, friends, faculty and staff. You are asked to honor the spirit of this important occasion by conducting yourself in a manner that is respectful of your guests and the guests of others, of your fellow graduates and of yourself.

Any student perceived as being under the influence of alcohol or drugs may be detained or removed from the ceremony by staff and/or security for further investigation.

University policy prohibits the unlawful use, sale, distribution, dispensing or possession of alcohol or controlled substances by students on University premises and at official University functions.  Students shall not use illegal substances or abuse legal substances in a manner that impairs scholarly activities or student life. (Adapted from UCD P&P Manual Chapter 380, Section 18).  Students violating this policy may be excluded from privileges and activities when there is reasonable cause to believe that their conduct 1) threatens the safety of themselves and others on University property or at University functions; and 2) disrupts the orderly operations of the campus. (Adapted from UC Board of Regents Policy on Student Conduct & Discipline).


(Veterinary Medicine graduates: see the Veterinary Medicine commencement website)

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. 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. Please see the Office of the University Registrar for details about diplomas listed under Academic Records.

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

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Food and Refreshments

While on campus there are a number of restaurants for you to choose from.  From all-you-can-eat dining rooms, to quick service eateries, you're sure to have great food and exceptional service!  For a complete list of dining locations, visit

Conveniently located next to the Pavilion, Starbucks at the ARC is open before, during and after the commencement ceremonies.

Water is available for purchase outside the Pavilion and vending machines are located inside the Pavilion.

For off campus dining visit

Graduation Announcements

The UC Davis Stores sell official UC Davis commencement announcements, blank notes, thank-you notes, envelope seals and certificates of appreciation. For personalized announcements, please allow one week for shipment. If you have questions, or for more information, please e-mail the UC Davis Store Commencement Coordinator.

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Information and Assistance

The Visitor Information booth on Old Davis Road is open Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Welcome Center is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 pm., Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and is closed on Sunday.

To make special accommodations for graduates or guests at commencement ceremonies, see Special Accommodations.


Parking is complimentary for commencement attendees. Electronic directional signs will be placed near the Pavilion and Mondavi to help direct atteendees to appropriate parking areas.

At the Pavilion, a portion of Lot #25 is reserved for vehicles displaying disabled person placards or plates. See the campus map or the Pavilion map (PDF) for convenient parking areas. Shuttle service is provided for guests with limited mobility to transport them to and from the parking lot or structure.

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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 Mondavi Center and Pavilion. Photos may be taken outside of the venues after the ceremony.

GradImages is the official photographer for our commencement. Proofs will be sent to your home and e-mail 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 may be contacted at (800) 261-2576 or via their website.

GradImages will be at the Grad Fair on Tuesday, March 7 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in ARC Ballroom A.  They will take professional photos in Cap and Gown or Business Attire for no sitting fee.  No appointment needed. No purchase necessary.

Portrait photography is available through a local photographer contracted by the UC Davis Stores. For on-campus sitting dates and package pricing, please see

Special Accommodations

Students registering for commencement should indicate any special needs on their registration application online, or by contacting their school's commencement representative.

Pavilion Commencements:

Shuttle Service is provided for guests with mobility problems to transport them to and from the parking lot and West Entry parking structure.  There will be a tent outside the Pavilion where elderly and disabled guests may sit while waiting for the Pavilion to open.  The northeast entrance is reserved for elderly and those with disabilities to enter the Pavilion. 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.  All seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Letters and Science commencements have additional limited mobility sections located in sections 219, 214, 206 and 201.

For those guests with limited/no hearing attending commencements in the UC Davis 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 all ceremonies.

Please note: UC Davis does not provide wheelchairs.

Mondavi Center Commencements:

Guests with mobility issues, may be dropped off directly in front of the Mondavi Center and wheelchair access is available.  For those guests with limited/no hearing, assisted listening devices are available to check out at the patron's services desk.  A driver's license or credit card are required as security until the device is returned. Sign language interpreters will be signing at all ceremonies.

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Student Speaker for Undergraduate Commencement Ceremonies

Graduating seniors may apply to be the student speaker for their respective college's commencement. Please note that the deadline to apply varies depending upon your college.

If you are selected to be the student speaker, you will be seated on stage during the ceremony, will have the opportunity to have pictures taken by a professional photographer, and are eligible to receive additional commencement tickets (based on availability) with VIP reserved seating.  Your name will be printed in the program and you will be given an introduction by the presiding Dean. Your speech must be 3-5 minutes in length.

To qualify students must:

Be enrolled and in good academic standing.

Have a minimum of 160 units completed by the end of Winter quarter 2017.

Have registered to participate in Commencement.

Application Procedure:

You can download the commencement speaker application for your college by clicking on the appropriate link below or pick up a copy at your College's Deans Office:

Application Deadline for College of Engineering: Friday, April 7, 2017 at 4:00 pm
Application Deadline for College of Ag & Environmental Sciences: Friday, April 14, 2017 at 4:00 pm
Application Deadline for College of Biological Sciences: Friday, April 14, 2017 at 4:00 pm
Application Deadline for College of Letters and Science: Friday, April 14, 2017 at 4:00 pm

Applications may be emailed, mailed to or dropped off to the appropriate commencement coordinator.  Applicants will be contacted to arrange for an initial interview.

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