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Sunday, May 17, 2015 at 1:00 p.m.

Center for the Arts at George Mason University in Fairfax

Please note: Photos of graduates taken by Gray Area Photography and Video during Commencement can now be viewed and purchased at this website: A link to more general photos of the event will be posted soon.

Degree or Certificate Conferral Request
Graduation and the commencement ceremony is a long awaited and joyous time for students, families, and friends. To participate, it is important that in addition to taking your final exam and, if required, submitting your final paper, thesis, or dissertation. Please submit your Degree or Certificate Conferral Request through HokieSPA. Doing so will trigger the printing of your name in the commencement bulletin and your student account will be charged $25. Please note that if your student record is marked "confidential," then your name will NOT appear in the Commencement Bulletin. To verify and update the status of your record, please go to HokieSPA: HokiePLUS Confidentiality Options. In the event that you do not graduate in the expected term, you must submit a new Degree or Certificate Conferral Request for the new term in which you plan to graduate.

The Degree or Certificate Conferral Request must be submitted by March 1, 2015 in order to have your name published in the Commencement Program. The approved Plan of Study and other important deadlines must be met prior to this request. Questions pertaining to academic progress or eligibility to participate can be directed to Graduate Student Services at 703-538-8327 or

Doctoral candidates participating in the commencement ceremony will receive their diplomas on stage. All other doctoral candidates and master's degree and certificate recipients will receive their diplomas by mail. Please ensure that your address is updated in HokieSPA. For information on how to change the name that will appear on your diploma, please see Name Change Instructions.

Regalia, Announcements, and International Invitations
All participating graduates must wear regalia. Please see information about regalia, announcements, and more on the Bookstore site: University Bookstore

International Invitations to Commencement: International students with a pending or awarded graduate degree from Virginia Tech may login to HokieSPA and, under their Degree Menu, request the International Invitation to Commencement:

  • select from a list of degrees you earned or you will earn
  • the system will generate the International Invitation to Commencement per guest (no limit) as a PDF for printing or saving to the user's desktop
  • make the request at any time of day and have the letter immediately available

Doctoral, Master's, education specialist, and certificate candidates who are eligible to participate in Commencement please arrive at the Center for the Arts and proceed to Registration at 11:30 a.m. You will be registered and receive a card that you will give to the Reader of Names during the ceremony. Please bring your Hokie Passport ID card to swipe if you have one. Hokie Passports are available through the Resource Center/Library at the Northern Virginia Center.

Following registration you will be guided to the robing rooms. Since personal belongings cannot be stored in the robing rooms please make prior arrangements for securing them. Instructions and support will be provided for hooding, line-up, and for the Processional and Recessional. All graduate candidates will be marching by degree, college, and department. Line-up for the Processional will begin promptly at 12:30 p.m.

Guests, Parking, and Seating
There is no limit to the number of guests that you may invite, and no tickets are required for this ceremony.

Parking is free in the parking garage next to the Center for the Arts. Guests will be seated beginning at 12:15 p.m. Seating for individuals with impaired mobility will be available at the ceremony. American Sign Language interpreters will be provided. The ceremony will last approximately one and a half hours.

Faculty and Commencement Speakers please register at the front table in the main lobby and then go to the second floor reception for refreshments and robing.

There will be a post-Commencement reception for faculty, speakers, graduates, families, and friends in the main lobby. Light refreshments will be served.

Please contact or 703-538-8327 for further information.

Photographs and Videos
Commencement photographs and videos will be taken by Donnie Gray and his team at Gray Area Photography and Video. Following the Commencement, information to access the photographs and videos will be emailed to graduates to access the Virginia Tech site on