Graduating Students

University Commencement

Based on feedback from our students, we have decided to focus attention on our Class Days and school-level graduation ceremonies, where students are honored individually alongside their peers, and to forego the university-wide ceremony that is scheduled for May 15. Details about degree conferral are forthcoming.

Visit Announcements for more details.

School Ceremonies

Each of Columbia’s nineteen schools and institutions conduct their own ceremony to honor the accomplishments of their graduating class, where each graduate has the opportunity to be announced and walk across the stage. Sometimes called Class Day or Graduation Ceremony, these celebrations are typically smaller in size and more intimate than University Commencement.

Regalia

Regalia is mandatory for University Commencement. However, individual schools may have different requirements for their class day and graduation ceremonies. All academic attire, including the cap and gown, is ordered through the Columbia University Bookstore. Check with your individual school on regalia requirements and any unique instructions prior to placing your order.

OTHER UNIVERSITY CELEBRATIONS

In addition to University Commencement and each school's ceremony, there are a variety of other celebrations organized within the University for graduating students and their families. Learn more below.

The Baccalaureate Service, an annual multifaith service that celebrates the completion of each undergraduate's academic career.

Multicultural and Affinity Graduation Celebrations, organized by our undergraduate students with campus partners, allow graduates to celebrate the cultural intersections in their lives and honor the communities to which they belong. These celebrations are open to anyone in the Columbia community who wants to celebrate a particular culture or group.

The Commissioning Ceremony for graduates as they matriculate from their Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) program and become commissioned officers in the United States Military.

Performance & ASL Auditions

Calling all Columbia Performers! Audition for the opportunity to perform at University Commencement on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. Deadline Extended: Submit your audition video by Monday, April 1, 2024, at Noon.

GRADUATION CHECKLIST

This checklist will help you prepare for graduation. If you need additional information, please email the Commencement Office at [email protected].

To be considered for a degree or certificate and to obtain a diploma, you must file an application with your school or department. If you have not already done so, please visit the website of the Office of the University Registrar.

  • Get your cap and gown! Regalia is mandatory for University Commencement. However, check with your individual schools that may have different requirements for their class day and graduation ceremonies.
    • 2024 Grad Fair dates
      • Morningside Campus: Tuesday, February 27 to Thursday, February 29 (11:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.)
  • Get your cap and gown! Regalia is mandatory for University Commencement. However, check with your individual schools that may have different requirements for their class day and graduation ceremonies.
    • 2024 Grad Fair dates
      • CUIMC Campus: Friday, March 1 (11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.)
  • Calling all Columbia Performers!
    • Audition for the opportunity to perform and/or sign at University Commencement on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. Deadline Extended: Submit your audition video by Monday, April 1, 2024, at Noon. Learn more here.
  • Verify your address!
    • Diplomas will only be sent when a "Diploma (DP) Address" is on file and may be updated on Student Services Online (SSOL) under "Degree Application Status". It is best to use an address that is valid for more than eight weeks after graduation. Please contact [email protected] with any additional questions.
      • To update your diploma address, follow these steps:
        • Log in to SSOL
        • Go to "Degree Application Status"
        • Click "Update Diploma Address" and enter or update with an address that will be valid more than eight weeks after graduation.
    • For Barnard College graduates, use my.barnard.edu and submit your diploma address through the graduation application.
    • For Teachers College graduates, use my.tc.columbia.edu to update your diploma mailing address under Student Resources.
  • Check your name for your diploma!
    • Check your name as it appears on Vergil, your full legal name will be printed on your diploma unless you inform the Registrar’s Office otherwise.
    • Please contact [email protected] if you require any of the following: 
      • If you would like to use your preferred/chosen name on Vergil to be printed only on your diploma and not changed system-wide.
      • If your name on Vergil does not display as you would like it presented on the diploma.
      • If you would like to abbreviate or remove your middle name from your record.
      • If you would like to include any diacritical or accent marks to your name, for diploma use only.
    • Fill out a Name Change Affidavit to make system-wide changes to your first or last name (transcript, diplomas, academic documents, etc.)
  • Register to participate in the Baccalaureate Service
  • Get your cap and gown! Regalia is mandatory for University Commencement. However, check with your individual schools that may have different requirements for their class day and graduation ceremonies. All academic attire, including the cap and gown, is ordered through the Columbia University Bookstore.
  • Students, and their guests, requiring accommodations during UC or school graduation ceremonies, including graduating students whose disabilities limit their ability to walk or negotiate stairs, should contact Disability Services at [email protected] by Wednesday, May 1. 
  • Verify your name and address for diploma delivery. Look above at the March 2024 section for more details. 
  • Good luck with your final exams!
  • Connect with the Columbia Alumni Association (CAA) about the great benefits available to you after graduation.
  • How should I prepare?
    • Don't leave home without it! Here's how you can prepare:

      • Ticket saved, loaded, and/or ready to scan.
      • Identification (e.g. CUID, license, passport, etc.)
      • Pre-filled, reusable water bottle.
      • Prepare for inclement weather.
      • Wear comfortable footwear, heels are not recommended.
      • Fully charged phone (and maybe even an external battery).
      • Pack light! Bags, backpacks, and purses larger than 5x7 inches are not permitted. All guests will be subject to bag check at entry.
      • Feeling sick? Stay home and tune in virtually.

        * It's important to remember what to bring, but also think about what not to bring. Balloons, sky lanterns, and other celebratory embellishments such as large placards, signs, or flags are not permitted at Commencement events. We hope to work together as a community to reduce waste, avoid potential tree entanglements, and provide an unobstructed and positive experience for all our graduates and guests. Prohibited items include: outside food or drinks; glass bottles; pets or animals (certified service animals are allowed); clothing deemed obscene or offensive; weapons of any kind, firearms, and knives; laser pointers; pepper spray/mace; lighters or matches; balloons, signs, posters, banners, flyers, or any items that could obstruct the view of guests and graduates; flags or flag posts; amplified sound items and noisemaking devices including cowbells and airhorns; and any item that may interfere with and/or distract graduation speakers, graduates, or guests.
  • All school ceremonies scheduled for the South Lawn of Morningside Campus will relocate. 
  • Based on feedback from our students, we have decided to focus attention on our Class Days and school-level graduation ceremonies, where students are honored individually alongside their peers, and to forego the university-wide ceremony that is scheduled for May 15. Details about degree conferral are forthcoming.

    Visit Announcements for more details.

If you haven’t already:

  • Verify your name and address for diploma delivery. Look above at the March 2024 section for more details. 
  • Update your information in the Alumni Directory for exclusive invitations, alumni benefits, and opportunities that you are now eligible for as a member of the Columbia Alumni Association.

GRADUATE COMMUNICATIONS

Are you receiving graduate communications from the Commencement Office? If not, check your spam folder or contact your individual school to get on the list for the next e-blast. If you missed the last message from us, click below to see what was sent!

ACCESSIBILITY

Columbia University is committed to ensuring that Commencement Week is accessible to all graduates, family, and friends. If you need an accommodation for a ceremony, please contact Disability Services.

CREATE & SHARE YOUR STORIES

Walk down memory lane! Who made your time at Columbia exceptional? Who are you celebrating Commencement with? Tag Columbia and use #Columbia2024

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