Spring Commencement and College/School Degree Celebrations

Please note that there are two different ceremonies that each graduate is eligible to attend:

1. The University Commencement ceremony on May 20 at 10 am.

2. The individual graduates specific college/school degree celebration.

Please see the complete schedule for all times and locations.

Difference between Commencement and College/School Degree Celebrations

Tickets are not required for the 2017 University Commencement Ceremony


Commencement Day of Information for families


Congratulations Graduate!

Make sure to look for all the great photos from the graduation ceremony captured by GradImages.   www.gradimages.com

Spring Commencement begins at 10 a.m. at the EagleBank Arena, which opens for guests at 9 a.m.,  Saturday, May 20th, 2017.

COMMENCEMENT SPEAKER ANNOUNCED! – This year our Commencement speaker is Martin Baron, Editor of the Washington Post

Bio: Martin “Marty” Baron is an Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist who has served as the editor of the Washington Post since 2012. At the Post he oversees print and digital news operations and a staff of about 650 journalists.

In 2014, the Post won two Pulitzer Prizes, one in the category of public service for revelations of secret surveillance by the National Security Agency and the other for explanatory journalism about food stamps in America. Before joining the Post, Baron was the editor of The Boston Globe for 11 years. Under his leadership, the Globe won six Pulitzer Prizes—for public service, explanatory journalism, national reporting and criticism. The paper won the Pulitzer for Public Service in 2003 for its investigation into a pattern of concealing clergy sex abuse in the Catholic Church. Baron has also held top editing positions at The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and The Miami Herald. Under his leadership, the Herald won the Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Coverage in 2001 for its coverage of the raid to recover Elián González, the Cuban boy at the center of a fierce immigration and custody dispute. Baron was named Editor of the Year by Editor & Publisher magazine in 2001, and Editor of the Year by the National Press Foundation in 2004.

He began his journalism career at The Miami Herald in 1976, serving as a state reporter and later as a business writer. In 1979, he moved to the Los Angeles Times. There, he became business editor in 1983; assistant managing editor for page-one special reports, public opinion polling and special projects in 1991; and editor of the newspaper’s Orange County Edition in 1993. In 1996, Baron moved to The New York Times. He was named associate managing editor for nighttime news operations of the newspaper in 1997. He became executive editor at The Miami Herald in 2000.

A native of Tampa, Florida, Baron speaks fluent Spanish. He graduated from Lehigh University in 1976 with both bachelor’s and MBA degrees.  He achieved heightened prominence in 2015 and 2016 due to his portrayal in the film Spotlight and his involvement in the release of imprisoned journalist Jason Rezaian.

Assembly and Procession

9:00 a.m. – Please arrive PROMPTLY at
9:00 a.m. for lineup on the JOHNSON CENTER NORTH PLAZA (by the George Mason statue). Faculty marshals will
assist you throughout the assembly.

Families may obtain programs inside the EagleBank Arena. Please leave your purses and valuables with family or friends, as there is no secure area for these items. All College of Humanities and Social Sciences and College of Science Undergraduates will be on the North side of the floor seating in the EagleBank Arena. All other graduates will be seated on the South side.

9:40 a.m. – The academic procession moves from the Johnson Center North Plaza to the EagleBank Arena under the direction of the faculty marshals. Your double line joins the double line of another college. You march four abreast into the EagleBank Arena. (You enter the lower level; there are steps to navigate on the walk from the North Plaza. It is assumed that any graduate who uses a wheelchair or needs special assistance has indicated this to Events Management. If you have not indicated this or you find at the last minute you must use a wheelchair or crutches, please contact the Office of Events Management. Those individuals with special needs may, if preferable, report directly to the loading dock door on the lower level of the east side of the EagleBank Arena.)

RAIN CONTINGENCY: In case of rain on Commencement morning, there will be no procession for bachelors and masters candidates from the North Plaza. Instead, you should enter the EagleBank Arena via the loading dock door on the lower level of the East side. You will be seated by college and by major on the floor. Look for signs indicating your college and major.

Faculty marshals will be there to assist you. You may call (703) 993-1000 if you are unsure about the line-up location because of weather conditions.

**PhDs candidates will meet at the Johnson Center Atrium**

Reminder: Beverages alcoholic or nonalcoholic and smoking are not permitted in either the academic procession or the EagleBank Arena. Graduates violating this policy will not be permitted to participate in the Commencement exercises.

Commencement 2017 Information Details

Remember — You must first apply to graduate! You will find more information about applying for graduation at the GMU Registrar’s web site.   Office of the Registrar, Graduation Section, Student Union Building I, Call 993-2441.