Fall Commencement Instructions
The 2016 Fall Commencement is scheduled
Friday, December 16th in the William P. Hytche Athletic Center Arena.
should report 8:00 am to corridor 1510 in the Hytche Center
for final commencement instructions. The commencement will begin promptly
at 10:00 am; doors will close at 9:45 am. Guest are encouraged to arrive early.
All candidates participating in the
Commencement Exercises must attend the mandatory rehearsal held Thursday,
December 15, 2016 at 3:00 pm in the William P. Hytche Center. Mark this
date on your calendar and do not be late. Your promptness is encouraged, so we
can begin and end in a timely manner. Your
attendance at the commencement rehearsal is mandatory. If you are not present, you will not be able to participate in
commencement. Exceptions will be made with prior approval only; for
approval to be absent from the rehearsal, contact the Associate Vice President
for Student Affairs at (410) 651-8440. You do NOT need your cap and gown for
the rehearsal. Immediately following
the rehearsal, the Office of Alumni Affairs invites you to enjoy complimentary
refreshments in the Student Services Center, where you will also receive
a small gift in celebration of your academic achievement.
Commencement day traffic and parking will be a challenge.
Candidates are to report to the Dr. William P. Hytche Athletic Center no later than 8:00 a.m. and
assemble in corridor 1510 for robing, assembly and final instructions. Please leave all
personal belongings (purses, jackets, etc.) with a family member prior to
arrival at the William Hytche P. Center. The University is not responsible for
The ceremony will last approximately 90 minutes to 2 hours. The ceremony will
start with a processional that will enter the arena. The
program begins with the invocation and is followed by the presentation and
conferral of degrees, benediction and recessional. Men should remove their caps for the singing of the "National
Anthem," invocation, benediction, and the Alma Mater. Candidates will be
given a 3x5 card on which their names will be printed. The Provost and President
for Academic Affairs will request candidates to stand for the conferring of
degrees by Schools. As directed by the Marshal, give your name card to the
announcer, who will read your name to the public at the appropriate time. Once
your name has been read, proceed across the stage to the President to receive
your diploma. Undergraduate candidates should return and be seated immediately.
When directed by the President, candidates for undergraduate degrees should
move their tassel from
the right to the left. Candidates receiving graduate degrees should wear
tassels on the left for the entire ceremony. Candidates receiving the Masters
degree will be hooded in the assembly area in the Hytche Center. Candidates
receiving doctoral degrees should carry the hood over their left arm, to be
hooded on the dais. After your name has been announced to the public and you
have been hooded, proceed across the stage to the President to receive your
diploma. Graduate candidates should return and be seated immediately.
are required for the fall commencement for everyone entering the
building, including children. Tickets will be distributed beginning Monday, November
28th, between the hours of 9:30 a.m. and noon, and again between 1:30 p.m. and
4:00 p.m., in the Student Services Center, Suite 2169. Candidates are
responsible for disseminating tickets to their guests. Candidates who are away
from campus and not able to pick up their tickets in person should contact Mrs.
Tina Cottman, Administrative Assistant in the Office of the Vice President for
Student Affairs (410) 651-8440 to discuss making arrangements to obtain their
tickets. Please do not request additional tickets as none are available!
Lost or stolen tickets cannot be replaced! Doors will close to the
general public 9:45 am at the start of Commencement exercises and will remain
closed throughout the exercises. Guest are encouraged to arrive early!
The procession will leave corridor 1510 at 9:50 am
sharp. The Commencement exercises begin promptly at 10:00 am with the
procession led by the Grand Marshal, the President, members of the
administration, honorary degree recipients and the faculty. Candidates will
follow in the order of academic Schools (i.e., School of Graduate Studies,
School of Agricultural and Natural Sciences, School of Arts and Professions,
School of Business and Technology and School of Health Professions), as
directed by the Marshal.
graduates will recess from the William P. Hytche Athletic Center under the
direction of the Grand Marshal and proceed out the building. Graduates should
arrange to meet relatives and friends in the Student Services Center after the
Commencement exercises. Guest are asked to stand during the recessional and to
remain standing at their seats until all graduates have recessed out of the
a spirit of joy and enthusiasm is encouraged, commencement is a dignified
academic event that recognizes the achievements of all our graduates, honorees
and our guest speakers. Students and guest are expected to maintain a measure
of decorum consonant with the regal nature of commencement. Graduates are expected
to return to their seats after receiving their diploma, and to remain seated
for the rest of the commencement exercise. Family and guests are asked to
remain seated for the entire exercise, refraining from leaving their seats in
order to take pictures or to talk to graduates. Students and guests who elect
to participate are expected to respect the rights of others, and to observe
some simple guidelines.
- Cell phones and other electronic
devices must be turned off for the duration of the exercise.
- Noise-making devices, banners and
posters are prohibited, as are all objects that would detract from the
formality of the event. Participants and guest are asked not to bring
these items into the venue.
- Students and guests should remain
in their seats until the faculty has proceeded in and out of the arena.
- The aisles must remain clear
throughout the commencement exercise.
- Applause should be held until all
students have received their degrees. Names will be read quickly, and it
is important that every name is heard.
- Guests are
requested to cooperate with any requests made by Commencement Marshals and
UMES Event Staff.
- No alcohol or
illegal drugs will be permitted in or around the Civic Center.
Graduates who appear to be under the influence of either will be removed
from the lineup and will not participate in the ceremony. Improper conduct
may result in disciplinary actions.
degree recipients are requested to refrain from inappropriately celebrating
(i.e., gyrating and dancing on stage, calling out names of others, loud,
offensive noises and gestures, etc.) during the exercise.
- Candidates should
NOT have personal belongings in their possession during the commencement
exercise, these items should be given to family or friends. UMES will not
be responsible for these items.
commencement program will be given to each candidate when they assemble for the
procession. Candidates are asked not to pick up additional programs prior to
programs are available to guests at the entrances to the arena.
Commencement is a
formal occasion with a time honored academic history. All graduating students
undergraduate, master and doctoral, must wear the official university approved regalia.
Undergraduate and master candidates (black cap and gown, maroon and gray
tassel); doctoral candidates must wear the official doctoral robe and hood. All
commencement items can be purchased during the Grad Fair in the University
Bookstore and/or online. It is recommended that you purchase your cap and
gown early at the Grad Fair to avoid any unnecessary delay or inconvenience on
graduation day. Doctoral
gowns and faculty gowns must be ordered at least eight weeks in advance, with
distribution in December. A representative will be on hand at the Grad Fair,
in the University Bookstore to take orders. Only official academic regalia may be worn during the commencement
exercises. No visible jewelry or
other decorations on the academic robe or mortarboard (cap) is permitted.
graduate and undergraduate candidates should attend the Grad Fair Tuesday and Wednesday,
October 25th and 26th, between 11:00 am and 3:00 pm, in
the University Bookstore, located in the SSC, to purchase commencement regalia.
The Grad Fair is the place to purchase your cap and gown and other graduation
supplies. Contact the bookstore for pricing information. Commencement cap and
gowns can also be ordered online at: www.herffjones.com.
Herff Jones representatives will be at
the Grad Fair to assist you with your on campus order. Personalized
commencement announcement orders will be shipped directly to the address you
specify. The delivery date for campus announcement orders is approximately 4
weeks. For more information, please call the bookstore at (410)-651-6437.
will be mailed to each graduate approximately six to eight weeks following the
Commencement exercises. Diplomas will be mailed to the address listed on file
with the Office
of the Registrar. Please check with the Office of the Registrar to make sure
your correct and current address is on file.
Guests should be seated 30 minutes
before the start of commencement exercises, doors will close at 9:45 am and not
reopen. Seating will be on a first-come, first-serve basis. Once the doors have
closed, guests will be directed to the Theatre in the Student Services Center
(SSC), where they can watch the ceremony via closed circuit.
Disability Access and Seating
will be available for people with disabilities, or in need of assisted
seating. No more than one additional guest may be seated in the area reserved
for people with disabilities. Candidates with guest needing assisted
seating should contact, Dr. Dorling Joseph in the Office of Student Affairs and
Enrollment Management: (410) 651-8440, at least two weeks prior
to the ceremony.
parking near the William P. Hytche Athletic Center is limited. Persons
transporting mobility-impaired visitors may use Student Center Lane, off
College Backbone Road to drop off passengers. Drivers will be asked to park
their vehicles in a general parking area after dropping off their passengers.
For visitors who park in handicapped spaces, please be sure to bring, and
display your personal State Handicapped Parking Tag or verification. This tag
or tag verification will allow you to park in an available handicapped space on
special Aid Station will be located at the east end of the corridor in the William
P. Hytche Athletic Center. Ushers and safety personnel will be able to
direct you to the Aid Station.
Parking on campus
is open and free for Commencement. UMES will provide free shuttle
transportation to and from parking lot S-College
Backbone Road. The best parking for access to the William P.
Hytche Athletic Center will be in lots B-Student Development Center, C-West of the Tennis Courts, D-Wicomico Hall and S-College Backbone Road.
Commencement visitors may park in any of the University parking lots and
spaces, except for those designated as disabled or loading zones. Parking along College Backbone Road is not permitted.
In consideration for
our graduates and others, guests may only take photographs from their
seats during the exercises. A professional photography
company will take individual pictures of each graduate prior to and during the
exercises as they receive their diploma from the President, and as they leave
they stage. Each graduate will be contacted by the photographer, however they
are not obligated to purchase photograph packages. After the ceremony
(when the platform party and faculty have left the area), guests are welcome to
come to the stage area to take photographs with their graduates.
Update your Address
do not forget to update your home mailing address. By informing the Office
of the Registrar of changes to your local, permanent, and diploma mailing
addresses, you will ensure that your diploma will get to you promptly. Please
allow six to eight weeks following commencement for your diploma to arrive.
candidates for graduation, who have family members that require an invitation
letter to support family members’, obtain visitor’s visas to attend
Commencement Exercises, should contact Dr. Lombuso Khoza at (410) 651-8385,
and complete a request for invitation letter. The letter from the
University is prepared for students making the request, who must deliver the
letter to their family members. Please allow three weeks for the letter to
reach addresses outside the U.S. Please note that when requesting your
invitation letter, you must include a copy of your letter of candidacy for
information must be included on the request for invitation letter form:
- graduate's name
- graduate's local
- graduate's degree
being earned; school/department
parents/family member names, relationships and mailing address
- accompany with a
copy of your letter of candidacy for graduation
Security and Safety Advisory
All bags may be subject to search
at all entrances to the commencement exercises. No large items, such as banners
or posters, or amplification equipment i.e., bullhorns or megaphones, or air
horns, will be allowed; alcohol is not permitted!
the event the William P. Hytche Athletic Center reaches capacity, and/or the
doors have closed to the public (9:45 am), guest will be directed to the
Student Services Center, where they will be able to watch the ceremony via
In consideration for our graduates, we ask that
you please turn off all cell phones, blackberries and other digital devices
when the academic procession starts, and to keep them off throughout the
exercises. Likewise, noise-making devices, banners and posters are prohibited, as
are any objects that would detract from the formality of the event. Your cooperation will
be greatly appreciated.
Commencement Schedule at a Glance
am Graduates begin to arrive
at William P. Hytche Center, Corridor 1510
am Doors open
to the general public
am Gospel Choir
prelude; faculty and special guest begin to arrive to robe
am UMES Wind
am Line up; candidates,
faculty, platform participants and special guest
am William P.
Hytche Center doors closed
am Commencement begins with
procession moving into the arena to the platform