Baccalaureate is a non-denominational celebration to honor the College’s graduating senior class. Unlike the larger Commencement exercises, the service offers a quieter, more intimate opportunity to pause and reflect on this rite of passage, hear faculty members, classmates, and others offer advice to the graduating class, and enjoy students’ musical talents. Organized by the College chaplain, baccalaureate is designed to be an inspirational, interfaith celebration. Seniors do not march in a processional or wear caps and gowns for this event. Family members and the campus community are invited to attend.
The Baccalaureate Service will be held in the Allan P. Kirby Sports Center Arena.
A complimentary luncheon will be available for graduates and their immediate families to dine informally in the air conditioned Allan P. Kirby Sports Center, Kamine Gymnasium immediately before the Commencement ceremonies. Please use the Hamilton Street entrance of the Kirby Sports Center. Please respond here to let us know how many in your party plan to attend.
Assembly for seniors will be at 1:30 p.m. in Kirby Sports Center, west end of the arena. It is imperative that candidates meet promptly. Please turn off all cell phones. Caps, gowns, and hoods are to be worn at the Commencement ceremony. They are purchased from the College Store beginning April 25 for $59. To be comfortable, you do not wear a jacket underneath your academic robe. Women are advised to leave purses with guests or at home. Caps, gowns, and hoods are yours to keep after the ceremony.
Families, friends, and members of the faculty and administrative staff are invited to join the graduates at 2:30 p.m. for the Commencement Exercises held in Fisher Stadium. Guests should plan to arrive and be seated no later than 2 p.m. to prevent traffic delays. Tickets are not required for Commencement held outside. Audience seating for Commencement at the outdoor site will be on a first-come, first-served basis. We will not be able to reserve seats or control access to these areas; only those occupying them can hold seats. Special seating arrangements can be made for those with medical problems or mobility issues by contacting the President’s Office, (610) 330-5200, before May 1. Note that the outdoor ceremony is held in an unshaded area.
In case of rain, ponchos are preferable to umbrellas. If Commencement needs to be moved indoors, that information will be available in a recorded message on the Lafayette Weather Information Hotline (610-330-5809) as soon as it is known. Indoor seating is limited. Each graduate will be entitled to four “rain site” tickets to the indoor ceremony for distribution to family members and guests. These will be available for pick up at the Grad Finale on April 25-26, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m., and at the Athletic Ticket Office in Kirby Sports Center 10 a.m.-4 p.m. beginning Monday, April 29th through May 24th and on Commencement day from 9-11:30 a.m. These tickets will be needed only if the Commencement ceremony must be held indoors. Admission to the Kirby Sports Center Arena by ticket will be between 1-2:15 p.m. At the conclusion of the indoor program and as a courtesy to other graduates and their families, guests should remain seated until the entire procession (graduates, faculty and platform party) has departed the Arena. Families can meet their graduate in Kamine Gym for the President’s Reception. PLEASE NOTE: Rain or shine, the ceremony will also be broadcasted into an on-campus, indoor facility for viewing – no ticket required.
A professional photographer will take individual photos of the graduates receiving their diplomas. Details will be provided by mail directly from GradImages. For the safety and security of all of our guests, pets will not be allowed at the ceremony.
Following Commencement, President Alison Byerly will host a reception for graduates, parents, families, and friends on The Quad. No tickets are required. In case of rain, the reception will be held in Kamine Gymnasium, Allan P. Kirby Sports Center.
A Roman Catholic Mass for graduates, their relatives, and guests will be held 11:30 a.m. Sunday, May 26, in Colton Chapel.