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Commencement Office
Center for Professional and Continuing Education

Commencement FAQ

What is the difference between the Commencement Ceremony and the Diploma & Hooding Ceremonies?
The Commencement Ceremonies are where degrees will be conferred by the President. The May 14th Commencement Ceremony will feature Honorary Degree recipients, Commencement Speaker, Student Speaker and Order of the Pacific. The Diploma & Hooding Ceremonies are school specific giving students the opportunity for individual recognition and to be "hooded" as a graduate of Pacific.

How many guests can I bring to my graduation?
The Commencement Ceremony that takes place at 9:00 A.M. in the Alex G. Spanos Center on May 14th is a ticketed event.  Graduates are guaranteed five (5) tickets per Commencement Ceremony. 

May 14th Commencement Tickets will be available at the The Alex and Jeri Vereschagin Alumni House beginning TBA. Student may pick up tickets in person with their student ID or by phone at 209.946.2391.

Is there a charge for tickets?
There is no charge for tickets.

How long will the ceremony take?
Each Diploma & Hooding ceremony will be approximately 60-90 minutes.  The Commencement ceremony will be 1.5 - 2 hours

How early should I arrive to get a good seat?
For both, Commencement and School Diploma and Hooding Ceremonies, it is suggested that everyone arrive 45 to 60 minutes prior to start time.

Where should I park?
Parking is available across the entire campus. We suggest that you park in the first available spot you find. Wear comfy shoes, because some lots are located on the opposite of campus from the commencement area. For more information, see Maps and Parking on the commencement website.

Are disability accommodations available?
Yes. There are a limited number of disability parking spots available on the East side of campus. You are required to have a state issued disability placard in order to take advantage of this parking. A shuttle service is also provided for the outlying lots for those who have difficulty walking. If you have guests with disabilities, please communicate your needs with your dean's office.

Can a family member videotape Commencement?
Families are welcome to video tape any of the ceremonies for Commencement or any of the Diploma & Hooding ceremonies. For the Commencement ceremony, people may set up cameras in the back of A. G. Spanos Center (where handicap seating is). But, people need to be flexible as sometimes we need videographers to move for handicap seating.

Is there any place to buy food?
On May 14th the University will have snack sites around campus before the 1:00 P.M. Diploma and Hooding ceremonies and receptions immediately thereafter each Diploma and Hooding ceremony. Each snack and reception site will provide food for all Commencement participants and guests. If any participant or guest has food requirements, it is recommended that individuals bring food for themselves on Commencement day. In addition, The Grove will be open from 8:00 A.M. -5:00 P.M. to purchase food and other items.

Is there any place to buy gifts?
After the Commencement morning ceremony the University bookstore will have a booth by the hospitality tent to purchase items for your graduate.  The University bookstore will also be open from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.  

When should I make hotel reservations?
Hotels located in the vicinity of the University fill very early. We suggest that you make your reservations as early as possible. For a list of hotels, see Accommodations.

Are graduating students allowed to decorate their cap and gown?
The only decorations students are allowed to wear are honor cords.

Are balloons and noise makers allowed at ceremonies on Commencement day?
No. Please refrain from bringing any air horns, noise makers, balloons or whistles to any Commencement day ceremonies.

What should attending guests wear on Commencement day?
For those who attend the morning ceremonies dress comfortably. The mornings usually begin very cool and warm quickly. For a current forecast, see The Weather Channel.

Where do I get my graduation pictures?
Grad Images is our graduation photographer. Your pictures are available online approximately five days after graduation. You can view and order your pictures from GradImages.

After graduation my family and friends want to have lunch/dinner together. Are there restaurants that will allow big groups?
There are several restaurants in Stockton that have the ability to host your post-graduation events.