Commencement Events, Regalia, & Exercises

I. Events

Please take careful note of the following:

A.   Breakfast for graduates (graduates only, no spouses or friends) and faculty is scheduled for 8:00 a.m., in the Commons Lecture Hall located on the Lower Floor of the Commons Annex (between the library and the bookstore) at Calvin College. Host: Student Senate President Adrian DeLange – Speaker: Prof. Bosma.

B.   Rehearsal follows immediately upon the conclusion of the breakfast. For those not at the breakfast, be sure to join the others and come to rehearsal at 9:15 a.m. at the Covenant Fine Arts Center of Calvin College. A graduating class picture will be taken at this rehearsal time. This picture will include graduates in all the degree programs. Please wear something appropriate for a picture that might be displayed at your 50th class reunion. This rehearsal should end at approximately 10:15 a.m. (sooner if all goes well). Please note that you must attend this rehearsal in order to participate in commencement.

C.   Commencement begins at 11:00 a.m. Doors will be open for guests at 10:30 a.m. (Guests should not bring strollers into the CFAC.) All graduates are expected to assemble in room CF 135 (Band Room) of the Covenant Fine Arts Center for robing at 10:30 a.m. sharp, and then proceed to the respective hallways alongside the auditorium as soon as possible. Graduates will be met there by one of two marshals who will assist in the formation of the lines.

D.   A Reception follows immediately after commencement on the lawn near the seminary side of the pond. Faculty, staff, graduates, friends, and relatives are encouraged to proceed there from the Covenant Fine Arts Center as quickly as possible. In case of inclement weather, the reception will be held in the Student Center of the seminary building.

II. Academic Regalia

A.   Gowns, hoods, caps and tassels will be ready for graduates to pick up in the afternoon May 19. They will be located in or outside the seminary auditorium (175S). Please check on or soon after the day they arrive to ensure that your regalia have arrived. You are strongly encouraged to take them home, make sure that your robe and cap fit (caps are adjustable – one size fits all), and take them with you on commencement day. It is your responsibility to have them with you on that day. If there is a problem with any of the regalia, please contact the Willsie Company representative, Andy Gillespie, at 888-678-GRAD (office), 517-282-9876 (cell), email hidden; JavaScript is required (e-mail).

B.   Please return gowns and hoods to the seminary auditorium (175S) as soon as possible after the reception. The Willsie representative will be there for one hour after the ceremony. If you do not return your regalia in time, you will be responsible for returning it to the company, including shipping costs. If the regalia are not returned, you will be charged the full cost of the regalia. Graduates may keep their caps and tassels.

Special Note to Th.M. Graduates:
The Academic Office has made arrangements to rent regalia for you. If you choose to purchase the master’s hood, you are responsible for the cost. To buy a hood or gown, and to find out current pricing, please e-mail email hidden; JavaScript is required, identify yourself as a CTS Th.M. student, and state that you wish to buy a hood and/or gown. Payment in cash or by check is made directly to Andy Gillespie at the time of commencement. Please also inform Denise Mokma that you will not be renting regalia.

III. Commencement Exercises

A.   The order of procession is as follows: platform party, seminary faculty, trustees, seminary graduates. The graduates will proceed in order of degree programs and then alphabetically. (The order of procession and seating will be distributed at graduation rehearsal.) Tassels should be on the left side of the cap where they remain throughout the ceremony.

B.   Graduates remain standing after proceeding into the auditorium. They are seated when the President and the remainder of the platform party are seated. When seated, men should remove their caps; women have the option of not doing so.

C.   At the time of presentation, the Academic Dean will ask the graduates to stand. All the graduates will stand simultaneously, being sure their hats are in place and holding their hoods over one arm. Graduates should remain standing until after the entire diploma ceremony is completed. Be seated only after you are invited to do so from the platform.

D.   No diplomas are presented at the time of commencement. Only the decorative covers are given to you by the President. The awarding of the diploma itself is contingent on the completion of all degree requirements. Your diploma will be mailed to you when all requirements have been met, and your account has a zero balance. Please provide the Academic Office with an email address you will check in the summer, so that we can contact you about mailing your diploma.

E.   For the recessional, the platform party, the faculty and the trustees leave first. When the last faculty member or trustee has walked past the graduates, the front rows of graduates leaves, followed by the back rows.

A Final Note:
Participation in the commencement ceremony is required of all graduates. If you haven’t already done so, please contact Registrar Joan Beelen (email hidden; JavaScript is required) if you are requesting permission to be excused from the ceremony. Permission will be granted only for sufficient reasons.