Planning Your Visit

Make sure you have all of these items listed below.

  • Ticket
  • Proof of Vaccination, or Negative COVID-19 Test (time-stamped photo of an at-home antigen test on the day of each event or email results of a PCR test within 48 hours of the first attended event) 
  • Non-cloth Mask
  • Water Bottle
  • Prepare for inclement weather
  • Feeling sick? Stay home and tune in virtually.

There are a variety of options for off-campus accommodations during Commencement Week. Discounted rates may be available to Columbia University students and guests at some local hotels upon inquiry. Neighborhood hotels do fill up well in advance, so it is recommended that you make your reservation as soon as possible. There are many other hotels in New York City, many of which are only a short subway ride from the University.

Please see Parking & Directions for more information.

Parking in Morningside Heights on University Commencement morning is challenging and on-campus parking is not available to the general public during Commencement Week. Public transportation, such as a subway, bus, or taxi, is recommended. If you must drive, please leave plenty of time to find parking and allow time for walking to campus. There are only a few parking garages near campus that fill up quickly during Commencement Week and cannot be counted on for convenient parking.

A shuttle bus is available to take guests with disabilities and their families to designated campus gates near the accessible seating area on Commencement Day. These passengers can be dropped off anywhere around the perimeter of the Morningside campus and will be shuttled to the designated gate. There is no designated parking for guests with disabilities.

Finally, city parking rules will be in full effect during Commencement Week; please take note of meters and other parking regulations. Many streets surrounding campus are blocked off very early on the morning of University Commencement. If you park in a location near campus the night before University Commencement, please diligently check for any signage indicating street closures. Failure to notice these signs may result in your car being towed.

Please contact the International Students and Scholars Office with this request. Their contact information is below.

E: [email protected]
P: 212-854-3587
International House North
524 Riverside Drive, 1st Floor
New York, NY 10027

For more information on visas and travel, you can visit the International Students and Scholars Office website.

Check the weather and plan accordingly, ceremonies will happen rain or shine. Bring your own reusable bottle to fill up at water stations and hydrate regularly.

Columbia is committed to global sustainability efforts. We encourage you to bring your own reusable bottle and fill up at any of our water refill stations available on Morningside Campus during Commencement Week. Locate water filling stations or find an Event Host, wearing a blue shirt, for assistance. 

Learn more about Columbia's Green Initiatives

Download several maps and guides to help you navigate when planning your visit to campus during Commencement Week by