Frequently Asked Questions
These frequently asked questions have been updated for Commencement 2013.
Q: Where and how can Connecticut College Commencement invitations be purchased?
Each student will receive four (4) Commencement invitations in his/her college mailbox following Spring Break. Please note that invitations are not required for the outdoor Commencement ceremony. If additional invitations are desired, please contact the Events Office, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: Where and how can Connecticut College Commencement announcements be purchased?
Jostens, in conjunction with the Connecticut College Bookshop, will be selling personalized graduation announcement packages on their web site. For additional information please refer to www.jostens.com. You may place orders directly on the Jostens web site or by calling 800-854-7464. Please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery. Please note that Connecticut College does not determine Latin Honors until the week prior to Commencement so it is not possible to have this honor noted on announcements.
Q: Where and how can students purchase their caps and gowns?Caps and gowns for students graduating with a bachelor’s degree will be available for purchase at the Connecticut College Bookshop beginning in April 2013. There is no need to pre-order. The price for the student package consisting of a sustainable gown made from recyclable materials and keeper cap with a navy and white tassel is $43.95.
Master’s degree students may rent academic regalia from the Bookshop effectively immediately. Rental prices for master’s regalia are $25.95 robe and $25.95 for the hood. Doctoral regalia may be rented for $28.95 for a robe and $28.95 for a hood. The deadline for placing orders to guarantee on-time delivery is April 5, 2013. Orders placed after April 5 will be subject to a special shipping surcharge by the College’s supplier.
Questions? Email may be sent to email@example.com or call 860-439-2375.
Q: Do family members and guests need invitations or tickets to attend Commencement?
The Connecticut College Commencement exercises are held outdoors on Tempel Green. No invitation or ticket is required for this outdoor ceremony. If Commencement must be moved indoors to Palmer Auditorium, due to severe weather, guests will be required to present severe weather tickets. (See the question below regarding the Commencement severe weather plan.)
Q: What time should I arrive on Tempel Green for Commencement exercises on Sunday, May 19th?
The Commencement processional begins at 10:35 a.m. Plan to arrive at Tempel Green no later than 10:00 a.m. A luncheon will be served immediately following the Commencement ceremonies and will be a short walk from the event.
Q: Can I reserve seats for my family on Tempel Green?
Students and their families may label chairs on Tempel Green no earlier than 7:30 a.m. Sunday, May 19th. Any signs posted prior to this will be removed by the Physical Plant crew setting up the green.
Q: How long does the Commencement ceremony last?
Commencement generally lasts 2 1/2 hours.
Q: What happens in the event of rain?
It is important to remember that we will try to hold the Commencement exercises outside under most circumstances (if raining, bring rain gear) and no tickets are needed for an outdoor ceremony. However, if the weather is deemed dangerous and severe, the ceremony will be moved indoors to Palmer Auditorium.
Due to limited seating in the auditorium, each student will receive two (2) severe weather tickets. Seniors must pick up these tickets on Friday, May 17th in the College Center at Crozier-Williams between the hours of 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., regardless of the weather forecast. Tickets will not be issued after 4:00 p.m. on Friday, May 17th. Seniors who are unable to pick up their tickets themselves may send a friend with written permission from the absent senior. If a family member/guest does not have a ticket, he/she will not be allowed into Palmer Auditorium.
Commencement ceremony viewing will be available via the campus televideo system in the following locations:
- Cummings Arts Center (John C. Evans Hall and Oliva Hall)
- F.W. Olin Science Center (Room 014)
- Blaustein Humanities Center (Ernst Common Room, Hood Dining Room and classrooms)
- College Center at Crozier-Williams (1962 Room and 1941 Room)
- and residence hall living rooms
Q: When and where does Baccalaureate take place?
Baccalaureate will be held on Saturday, May 18, at 4:00 p.m. in Palmer Auditorium. This interfaith service of prayers and reflections is an occasion for reminiscence and a form of collective thanksgiving that will include readings, music, and song. No invitation or ticket is required to attend Baccalaureate.
Learn more about Baccalaureate and other Commencement traditions.
Q: When and how will students find out if they have been elected to Phi Beta Kappa?
Students will receive written notice of their election to Phi Beta Kappa through campus mail in April. They should read the letter of invitation very carefully, as they must affirmatively indicate their willingness to join the chapter and to participate in the initiation ceremony. The Phi Beta Kappa initiation ceremony will be conducted on Saturday morning, May 18th at 10:00 a.m. in John C. Evans Hall of the Cummings Arts Center.
Q: Where should guests park for Commencement Weekend activities?
Please be aware that parking will be tight on campus during Commencement Weekend. Guests may park on campus in the south lot, the north lot and at the Athletic Center. While parking restrictions designating spaces for faculty, staff and students will not apply on Saturday, May 18th and Sunday, May 19th, guests may not park in handicapped designated spots without appropriate vehicle tags. Families are strongly encouraged to carpool from their homes or hotels to reduce the number of cars to be parked on campus.
Q: Is there a listing of area hotels to stay at as well as a listing of area restaurants?
View the suggested list of area hotels and dining, compiled for your convenience. The College neither recommends nor endorses these establishments.
Also, the Mystic Country website contains a complete listing of hotels and bed and breakfasts in our area, as well as a list of restaurants.
Q: Will there be special parking for individuals with disabilities or health concerns?If you, or a family member, have special needs, please stop at the gatehouse upon entering campus and you will be directed to special parking. If you wish to reserve a wheelchair, please call the Office of Events and Catering at 860-439-5462 by Monday, May 6th, 2013.
Q: Is everyone (family members, friends, etc.) invited to attend the luncheon following Commencement on Sunday, May 19th?Connecticut College cordially invites all of our Commencement guests to attend the luncheon that follows the ceremonies on Tempel Green.
Q: What is the Family Gala for Seniors and Parents/Families?Saturday May 18, 2013 this event is the culmination of the Senior Week activities sponsored and hosted by the Junior Laurel Chain and Usher Corps. Scheduled from 8:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. in the College Center at Crozier Williams, all family members are welcome to attend and no invitations are necessary. It is a casual to business casual dress code, after dinner reception and one more opportunity for students to gather with friends, faculty and staff. Light refreshments and beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic are provided and a variety of music is offered throughout the building. Stop in for a few minutes or stay for the duration. Enjoy!
Q: Can seniors host private parties on campus with families and friends?
Connecticut College recognizes the desire of its graduating seniors to celebrate with family and friends during Commencement Weekend. In order to balance this desire with the College’s need to devote its resources to the “official” weekend events, a policy has been developed regarding private party requests from students.
Please view the Guide for Hosting Private Parties page.
Q: Are meals and snacks available for purchase on campus during Commencement Weekend?
Jazzman’s Café at Ruane’s Den will be open within Harkness Hall on Tempel Green on Sunday, May 19, from 7:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
In addition to the complimentary post-Commencement luncheon on Sunday, May 19, Connecticut College Dining Services has set the following hours for other facilities:
Oasis Snack Shop, located in the College Center at Crozier-Williams:
Saturday, May 18, from 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 19, open for cash sales from 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Harris Dining Hall
Saturday, May 18, for breakfast/lunch from 8:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. for dinner.
Sunday, May 19, Harris will offer dinner from 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Per person guest meal rates are: $5.00 for breakfast, $7.25 brunch/lunch, $9.50 dinner.
Q: Will there be a photographer at Commencement to take pictures of each graduating senior?
The College has retained GradImages™ to take a candid photo of each senior. Prior to the ceremony you may register your permanent email address at www.gradimages.com (click on the Pre-Event Registration tab) and receive a coupon for $5 off a purchase of $25 or more. After the ceremony proofs will be posted on the internet and mailed to graduates within one week after the ceremony. You may select from a variety of photo packages, place orders, and obtain answers to questions at www.gradimages.com or by calling 800-261-2576.
Q: Are there flowers that can be purchased for the graduates?
Fresh flowers will be available for purchase at the Connecticut College Commencement Ceremony or may be pre-ordered by clicking the following link: http://www.commencementflowers.com/index.php?id=CTCO1