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Spring 2023 Commencement FAQs 

See below for answers to frequently asked questions about Spring 2023 Purdue Commencement events and activities.

What is the Spring 2023 Commencement schedule?

Ceremonies will be held Friday, May 12, 2023 through Sunday, May 14, 2023 at Elliott Hall of Music, and will follow the schedule below:

Division I - Friday, May 12, 2023, at 9:30 a.m. ET

  • Agriculture (Undergraduate only)
  • Engineering (Undergraduate only)
    • Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABE)
    • Mechanical Engineering (ME)

Division II - Friday, May 12, 2023, at 2:30 p.m. ET

  • Engineering (Undergraduate only)
    • Aeronautics and Astronautics (AAE)
    • Biomedical Engineering (BE)
    • Civil Engineering (CE)
    • Chemical Engineering (CHE)
    • Construction Engineering (CNE)
    • Environmental and Ecological Engineering (EV)
    • Interdisciplinary Engineering (IDE)
    • Nuclear Engineering (NE))

Division III - Friday, May 12, 2023, at 7 p.m. ET

  • Engineering (Undergraduate only)
    • Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE)
    • Industrial Engineering (IE)
    • Materials Engineering (MSE)

Division IV - Saturday, May 13, 2023, at 9:30 a.m. ET

  • Health and Human Sciences (Undergraduate and Professional)

Division V - Saturday, May 13, 2023, at 2:30 p.m. ET

  • Science (Undergraduate only)

Division VI - Saturday, May 13 at 7 p.m. ET

  • Polytechnic Institute (Undergraduate and Professional)

Division VII - Sunday, May 14, 2023, at 9:30 a.m. ET

  • Veterinary Medicine (Undergraduate and Professional)
  • Pharmacy (Undergraduate and Professional)
  • Liberal Arts (Undergraduate only)

Division VIII - Sunday, May 14, 2023, at 2:30 p.m. ET

  • Management (Undergraduate only)
  • Education (Undergraduate only)

Division IX - Sunday, May 14, 2023, at 7 p.m. ET

  • Masters and Doctor of Philosophy (all colleges/schools)

ELLIOTT HALL OF MUSIC Q&A  

What time do the doors open before a performance? 

Doors generally open 90 minutes prior to the published ceremony start time.  

Can I bring a bag into the venue?

Guests are encouraged not to bring any type of bags, and only the following are permissible:

  • One bag that is clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and does not exceed 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches.
  • One one-gallon clear plastic bag (Ziploc bag or similar).
  • Also permissible is one small clutch bag (no larger than 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches)-approximately the size of a hand-with or without a handle or strap.

Exceptions will be made for guests with medically necessary items and/or diaper bags (with a child/children present).  All bags are subject to a security search, which creates a slower entry process.  

What are acceptable and non-acceptable items for Elliott Hall of Music?

  • Acceptable Items
    • Cameras
    • Flowers
    • Guests that are 2 and under do not require a ticket
    • Service Animals Only  
  • Not Acceptable Items  
    • Camera bags or tripods
    • Balloons  
    • Beverages or food products-Unless a medical need
    • Noisemakers/posters
    • Wrapped gifts
    • Strollers or car seats
    • Alcohol/tobacco/vape
    • Emotional Support animals
    • Weapons   

Where can guests park?

Guests may refer to the Purdue parking page for information. https://www.purdue.edu/parking/  

I am bringing a guest with physical limitations. How to I ensure they are accommodated?

Guests with physical limitations may use the ADA accessible entrances in the Hall of Music. *Gold squares noting the two entry doors with ramps.  

Map of ramps
 
If your guest has more specialized seating needs, have your graduating student email commencement@purdue.edu at least a month prior to the event to secure special seating. Special seating will be accommodated for the person with needs and one chaperone.  

COMMENCEMENT TASK LIST Q&A  

Do I need to let Purdue know if I plan to participate in Winter 2022 commencement in December?

Yes.  The commencement task list will be available on the student myPurdue portal at 8:30 a.m., Friday, September 23, 2022.  Those students who declare their intent to participate before 10 p.m., Friday, November 4, 2022, will be permitted to participate in the winter 2022 commencement exercises. This will not affect the degree award date.  

I just applied to graduate, when will my commencement task list appear?

The task list will appear 24 hours after your degree status changes to Pending status.  

The name presented on the Name Coach task list item shows something different. Can I change this?  

No, the name presented on the Name Coach section of the Commencement Task List is not going to be used for the announcement of your name during the ceremony. We are only providing the recorded name that you recorded in Name Coach to the Orators so they can pronounce your name correctly.  Only first and last name are read at commencement.

COMMENCEMENT ATTIRE Q&A  

Do I need to rent the Purdue cap and gown for my commencement ceremony?

Yes, in order to participate, you must be on the participation list, along with renting a Purdue University custom cap and gown.  Our distributor  Herff Jones will ship to you the cap and gown, along with a prepaid mailing label for you to mail back your gown and hood if you are a graduate or professional candidate. You should receive your cap and gown within 10 business days of submitting your order, and you must return the gown by December 31. Please note, the rental of the cap and gown does not mark you as participating in the event. You must indicate attendance on the commencement task list.  

Can I wear a keepsake gown that I have at home?

No, a rental gown is required to participate because it’s a custom rental gown unique to Purdue University.  

How can I purchase only the keepsake items (mortarboard, tassel, stole)?

Please reach out to a representative of distributor Herff Jones via email to purchase these items.  

What is the deadline for cap and gown rental?

The rental deadline at a discounted price is Monday, November 7 with distributor  Herff Jones. The last day to order cap and gown at full price is Monday, November 14. Those interested in rentals after November 14 should check with  University Book Store for availability.  

Can I get a refund on my cap & gown?

Yes. If you cancel your order prior to receipt or you return it unopened, you can receive a refund. However, we do encourage you to consider renting the cap and gown for your special graduation photos.  

For the cap & gown rental, what do I return? The information from Herff Jones said to return the cap & gown.

If you rented a cap & gown you need only return the gown. Undergraduate students may keep the tassel, stole and cap. Graduate students may keep the tassel and mortarboard cap. The gown and masters/PhD hood must be returned. If you are a PhD or Professional student and rented the tam, then it should be returned unless you purchased it. When you receive your order, there is a return prepaid postage sticker in the box to return your items – don’t throw this away.  

How do I access the link to order my cap and gown?

You must indicate participation in the ceremony on the Commencement Task List, then the link for the cap and gown will appear.

I am completing two degrees from the same college; is there any way I can order two tassels?

You will order one tassel from Herff Jones and stop by University Bookstore on State Street if you would like to purchase the second tassel.

I am eligible for Honors medallion. How do I get that?

The Honors College handles distribution of their medallion.

I am eligible for Athlete medallion. How do I get that?

Purdue Athletic leadership handles distribution of their medallion.

Can I decorate my cap/mortar board?

Yes, as long as your decorations are not offensive or obstructing the view of students behind you.

I am eligible for distinction. How do I get my cords?

If you meet the GPA criteria, you will receive your cords at check in for the commencement event.

Where do I go if my academic gown or attire is incorrect?

If you notice this prior to your event, contact our Herff Jones rep. If it’s commencement weekend, try the University Bookstore.

I am completing a degree in two colleges. I selected the college I plan to walk with on the commencement tab. How do I ensure this is correct?

You select the event for Herff Jones academic attire ordering only. We assign you to walk with the college that is listed first on your Apply to Graduate application.  

CEREMONY and TICKET Q&A  

How long does the ceremony last?

We strive to keep our ceremonies to 90 minutes or less.  

Does Purdue allow students to only walk with "their class"?

No. Students routinely elect to participate in a ceremony with students they didn’t enter college with for a variety of reasons, including early completion, delayed completion, and travel constraints. We ensure that each traditional in-person ceremony looks the same, with a personal recognition of each participating graduate.

Does this ceremony information also apply to Purdue Northwest, Purdue Fort Wayne, Polytechnic Statewide, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), Purdue Global?

No. It is for Purdue West Lafayette only. Candidates should visit the websites of each campus for campus-specific graduation information.

I am graduating but am performing at the graduation ceremony. Do I indicate participation?

Yes, please indicate your intent to participate and request your needed guest tickets. Please also be sure to notify your director/conductor of your graduation status so we make sure you get your diploma.

When should I expect to receive my guest tickets?

Graduates will receive an email link to their tickets the week leading up to the event.

How many guest tickets can I receive?

Each candidate who plans to take part in the winter 2022 commencement is guaranteed four guest tickets at no charge.  The university does not offer guest tickets for sale. There will be a livestream link available on the commencement website for guests without tickets.  

Can I sell or give away any guest tickets that my family doesn't need?

No. Selling something Purdue provided for free would violate our student code of conduct and could result in disciplinary action that could also jeopardize a graduate’s degree .  

Can we request more tickets for the Winter graduation ceremony?  

Due to the size of our graduating class, the university can only guarantee four guest tickets. We are not creating a list of names with unused tickets.  
 

Do children require guest tickets?

Anyone age of 3 and above will require a guest ticket.  

My guests are having difficulty accessing the tickets.

Please refer your guests to the box office with the Hall of Music for assistance.  

What accommodations do you provide for patrons with disabilities?

Click here to learn about audio enhancement, special seating options, service animals, and other accessibility considerations. Please note that Elliott Hall of Music does not have elevators and all accessible seating is located on the main floor, and by reservation only.  

Are there any COVID-19 restrictions ceremony visitors should know about?

All visitors need to be fully aware of and completely adhere to the Protect Purdue Plan  

Will my name be read in the Winter 2022 ceremony?

All participating candidates that present their orator card will have their first and last name announced by our Public Orators as they walk across the stage.   

If I choose not to attend the ceremony, will my name still be announced?

Unfortunately, only candidates that indicate participation by the deadline and cross the stage with their orator card will have their name announced.  

Can I change my name that is announced?

N o, your name as it appears in your university record will be announced by our Public Orators. The purpose of recording your name is to assist our Public Orators with your name pronunciation.  

Will my middle name be announced during the ceremony?  

Due to the size of the graduating class, we are only able to announce first and last name.  Even if you write out your full name, only first and last name will be printed on the orator card.  

Can I walk in a future graduation ceremony?

Yes. Deadlines to request participation, registration links, and additional information can be found on our  Returnee Participation Information page.  

Will the ceremonies be live-streamed?

Yes.  Ceremonies will be available to watch on our website at  www.purdue.edu/commencement .  

I failed a class. Can I still walk in the ceremony?

Yes, providing you indicated you were participating before the published deadline we will not remove you from the graduate line up. You will look like any other graduating student at the ceremony.  

DIPLOMA Q&A  

When can I expect to receive my diploma?

Diplomas will be mailed four-six weeks following the end of the term.  Please provide a diploma address through the commencement task list by December 17.  If you do not provide a diploma address, your diploma will be sent to your permanent address on file. If you do not provide a current address, and your diploma is mailed to an old address, you will need to purchase a duplicate through the vendor website.   

If you are using an international mailing address, we highly recommend that you pay the $25.00 for Federal Express. If you do not pay the $25.00 for Federal Express and your diploma is lost in the mail, then you will be required to order a duplicate diploma directly from the printing vendor and the international shipping cost is $175.00. Check the Commencement Task List for the $25.00 Federal Express option.   

When can I order a Digital diploma?

Candidates who have met requirements will receive an e-mail from our diploma vendor 4-6 weeks after the end of term when the digital diploma is ready for download.    

Who do I contact if I haven't received my diploma?

If you still haven’t received your diploma after February 4, 2023, you can contact Commencement staff via  email, making sure to include your PUID number so that we can investigate.  

Why isn't my major printed on my diploma?

Per Purdue University regulations, very few majors are part of the degree name. Your degree name only is printed on the diploma. Majors, minors, and areas of concentration will appear on your transcript.  

Why did I receive only one diploma when I completed two degrees?

Those who complete more than one major within the same college receive one degree and one diploma. All majors, minors and areas of concentration will appear on your transcripts.  

When should I expect to see my degree posted on my transcript?

Our goal is to post this information by Wednesday, January 4. We can only post degrees for those candidates who were cleared by their college.