Your guide to graduation day
Graduation day is your time to celebrate your success with your family and friends and reunite with other graduating students whom you might not have seen since you finished uni. It’s fun and exciting but it can also be a really busy day. To help everything go smoothly and make sure you enjoy the day, here is the rundown on what will happen plus some helpful tips and information so you know exactly what to expect.
1. Arrive at the venue at least one hour before your ceremony starts
This will give you time to find parking, “robe up,” reunite with your fellow graduands* and sit for your official photos.
*You’ll hear this a lot on graduation day. A graduand is a student who has completed the requirements for their degree but not had their degree conferred. Once your degree is conferred you become a 'graduate’.
2. Register on arrival
When you arrive at the venue, head straight to the registration desk. You’ll be given your seat number and proceed through to collect your academic dress. There’ll be lot of other graduands in the queue so please ask your guests to wait away from the registration area – you can join them once you’ve collected your academic dress.
3. Collect your academic dress
Your academic dress is your robe and hat (your hat is called a trencher). You’ll also receive a coloured hood that drapes over your shoulders and down your back. The colour of your hood depends on the degree you’re receiving. Your hood is attached to your clothing - there will be plenty of staff to help you with this. Have a look at the What to wear guide for all the details.
4. Professional photography
You can have professional photos taken before and after the ceremony. Make sure you have photos taken with your friends and family and perhaps even some of your favourite lecturers and tutors.
5. Attend the granduand briefing
The graduand briefing will take place 30 minutes before the ceremony starts. Don't miss it! This is where you'll be given instructions on what you need to do, where you need to be and when you need to be there.
6. Guests are asked to be seated
Guest seating is unallocated and it’s best that your family and friends find seats early as many graduation ceremonies will be at capacity.
7. Graduand entrance procession
Ten minutes before the ceremony begins, you'll enter the room with the other granduands and take your seat. It's important that you find your allocated seat number. You can have some personal items with you but, as you will need to get up during the ceremony and go to the stage, these will need to be tucked away under your seat.
8. During the ceremony
Your row will be ushered to the backstage area to prepare to go on stage. Staff will be in attendance to assist with straightening your hood and will tell you where to stand to wait until your name is called.
When your name is called you’ll walk across the stage and be awarded your degree. Remember to smile and enjoy the moment! The ceremony is videotaped and your family and friends will no doubt be taking lots of photos.
Once you’ve received your degree you’ll walk to the other side of the stage to the backstage area where staff will be in attendance to hand you some official paperwork. You’ll then return to your seat for the remainder of the ceremony.
9. After the ceremony
Once the ceremony concludes, there will be a graduate procession. Your guests will remain in their seats during the procession. You’ll be ushered to the reception area where you can find your guests, enjoy some light refreshments and celebrate together. Official photographs will still be available during this time.
10. Return your academic dress
Your academic dress needs to be returned within one hour of the conclusion of the ceremony. Fees will be charged for late returns or missing items. Your trencher (hat) is yours to keep as a memento of graduation day.