Do I need to register for the ceremony?


When a student fills out their application for graduation in their

Candidates who wish to change their responses can do so at any time by going back to their, going to their "Graduation Checklist," going to their "RSVP for the Ceremony," then changing their responses. The deadline to register or change the registration information is August 2.

For a number of years our candidates have provided feedback that the system to register for ceremonies, provide name pronunciation and receive information about the Commencement ceremonies would be best in one place. Also our use of name cards is antiquated at best and in general a real hassle. In response to this feedback we have purchased MARCHING ORDER.

MARCHING ORDER is a graduation software suite that will streamline the process for our candidates and eliminate the use of Name Cards for those who register (opt-in) for the service. MARCHING ORDER also features a PRONounce feature where candidates can record their names on an audio file and a professional voice actor will record their name with the best pronunciation possible. This will greatly reduce the mispronounced names during ceremony. Our name readers do an amazing job given the short window provided to learn so many names, any opportunity to reduce that burden is a win for us collectively.

Details will be sent to candidates in early June 2024.

I thought there were two ceremonies?

In the spring semester we have over 10,000 graduates and thus have a different model for graduation weekend, holding a University Wide Ceremony for all colleges simultaneously in the stadium, as well as college recognition ceremonies where graduates are recognized individually.

Because we have significantly fewer graduates in the summer (just under 3,000) we do not approach commencement with the same model. We are also statistically more likely to have severe weather in August.

Instead, in the summer we hold one ceremony for our doctoral grads, then split our bachelor/master/specialist candidates in half, holding two ceremonies to individually recognize and celebrate those candidates indoors in the Stephen C. O'Connell Center.

Each ceremony runs approximately 2 hours plus a processional.

Tickets: Do I need them? How do I get them? How many can I have?

We will not ticket the Summer 2023 Commencement ceremonies nor restrict the number of guests per candidate.


Where do we park? Do we pay to park? Are there shuttles? What about parking tickets!?!

Parking restrictions are lifted at the O'Connell Center starting on Friday, August 9 starting at 12pm. Parking is lifted on the rest of campus starting at 5pm on August 9 through the remainder of the weekend.

Parking for the ceremonies is at the O'Connell Center in the flat lot adjacent to the building or in the garage next to the building (garage #7). See O'Connell Parking & Entry map.

For the Bachelor/Master/Specialist Ceremonies, overflow parking with shuttle service is at the Graham Lot. Summer '23 Shuttle Map
- Shuttles are 2 school buses from Alachua County and 1 Campus Connector for those who need ADA Accessibility.
- Shuttles will run Friday, August 9 from 5pm-9:30pm and Saturday, August 10 from 8am-12:30pm.



How long will the ceremony be?

Plan on the ceremony lasting the full 2 hours from the posted start time. The candidate processional will begin approximately 20-30 minutes prior to the posted start time.

How do I order regalia?

A student must apply for graduation before they can order regalia. Regalia ordered after June 28 will incur a late fee. 

Regalia is shipped directly to the candidate

  • Doctoral candidates rent a tam with orange tassel, blue open sleeved robe, and hood. There is an option to purchase the hood as a memento. The tam and tassel are yours to keep. The robe must be returned to the bookstore by Monday, August 12 at 5pm.
  • Master's and Specialist's degree candidates purchase a cap with black tassel, gown with slitted sleeves, and hood depicting the color of the college.
  • Bachelor's degree candidates purchase a cap with a tassel depicting the color of the college and/or degree and gown with pointed sleeves.

Regalia orders are managed through the UF Bookstore. For questions contact Further information can be found here: Regalia Services

Please note, the commencement office cannot assist with regalia orders, they must go through the UF Bookstore.

Caps- can we decorate them? do we throw them?

You can decorate your cap so long as the decorations are family friendly.

We don't facilitate a grad-cap toss at any of our ceremonies. In fact, most universities don't. That's more of television thing than a real-life thing.


What about other stuff to wear- like cords and sashes?

Honor Cords
Cords that represent academic honors, such as magna cum laude, are purchased at the bookstore. A student can only purchase the level of cords they are qualified for. The bookstore is given a list from the Registrar's Office that lists which candidates qualify for which honors. They can be pre-ordered or purchased at the time of regalia pickup the week of August 7-12. Honors levels are only for undergraduates. 

Machen Florida Opportunity Scholars Cords
Cords that represent this program are purchased at the bookstore. They can be pre-ordered or purchased at the time of regalia pickup the week of August 7-12. 

Veteran's Stole
The Veteran's Stole can be purchased at the bookstore. This is to signify a candidate's military service and can only be purchased by those who have served in a branch of the U.S. Military.

The Stole of Gratitude
When you purchase your regalia, you will see the option to purchase the "stole of gratitude," this is a special stole with the express purpose of a Gator Grad passing it on to someone in their life who has played an important role in their success.

Stoles and cords that signify participation, completion or membership of programs or organizations are managed through those respective areas. 

For example, if you served as a student ambassador for your college and there is a stole that signifies that, the college will provide that stole to you. 

What is the policy about cameras and camera bags?

Video, film, and digital cameras are permitted, including those with interchangeable lenses. For both the safety and consideration of those around you, the following rules are in place:

  • Camera bags are permitted in the Stephen C. O'Connell Center, but they are subject to individual security inspection.
  • Tripods, monopods, selfie sticks, or similar apparatuses that can obstruct aisles or others' view are not permitted in the Stephen C. O'Connell Center.
How can I get a copy of the commencement program?

Graduates will receive two copies of the printed university commencement program when they pick up their regalia at the UF Bookstore. These keepsake programs have the names of all students graduating this summer.

(Please note this may not be an exhaustive list, as it reflects applications submitted by the deadline. Academic honors designations listed in the program are also determined at this time. We understand students may apply to graduate after this date, and GPAs may fluctuate through the course of the semester. However, due to the printing schedule, we must use the application deadline as the final submission point for the program)

Approximately two weeks before graduation weekend, the full PDF of the program will be available online at This version can be viewed and/or downloaded at any time after it has been posted.

When, where or how will diplomas be distributed?

Students finish taking finals on Friday, August 11 at 5pm, so grades aren’t finalized graduation weekend; they’re finalized the following week.

It then takes about 8 weeks to input grades, update records, certify degrees, print diplomas, sort them for mailing and put them in the mail to students’ DIPLOMA MAILING ADDRESSES listed in their One.UF. Hence, graduates receive their diplomas in late September or early October.

Diplomas, paper and electronic, are managed by the Registrar's Office. They are the appropriate contact for specific questions regarding diplomas. More information about diplomas can be found here:

Will pictures be taken at the ceremony? How can I get copies?

Professional photographers from University Photography take photos during our ceremonies, they’ve been our ceremony photographers for more than 30 years. Proofs of those photos are sent to graduates approximately 10 days after the ceremony weekend; a link is sent to the UF email address.

We use the name cards distributed at regalia pickup to provide the photographers with grads' information. When grads arrive at the ceremonies, it is important that they bring the name card with the info filled out on the front and back of the card NEATLY.

Contact information for University Photography:
University Photography, P.O. Box 2454, Tuscaloosa, AL 35403-2454

Family members nor privately hired photographers will be allowed in the graduate seating area or stage.

For privacy reasons, proofs of photos must be sent to the grads directly.

How can I receive up-to-date info ?

We have two great resources:

Will the ceremonies be online for those who cannot attend in person?

Yes, we livestream all University commencement ceremonies.

About two weeks before graduation weekend, the links for our ceremonies will appear on this page.

What if a student is a double major?

If a student is a double major...

COMMENCEMENT PROGRAM INFO: (if we have permission to print their name, and their applications for both degrees were submitted on time)

  • If they are graduating from more than one college, they will be listed in the commencement program as a graduate of each of those colleges.
  • If they are graduating with two different degrees from the same college (example: a BS and a BA) they will be listed under each heading in the commencement program.

DIPLOMA INFO: They will receive a diploma for each degree.


  • If they are a double major in the same college, they will walk once during their college’s recognition time in that ceremony.
  • If they are a double major and both colleges are in the same ceremony, they choose which college to walk with. Everyone walks once in a ceremony.
  • If they are a double major and the colleges are in different ceremonies, they choose which ceremony they wish to walk in and register for that one. They can walk in both if they wish to, but this may be a choice to first discuss with the family. Please note that, aside from which grads walk across the stage, the ceremonies are identical.
What if two members of our family are in two different ceremonies this weekend?

If you have two family members participating in two different ceremonies this weekend, we can try to arrange for your family's graduates to walk in the same ceremony if there are additional spaces in one of the ceremonies available. We may not know until the middle of the semester whether that will be a possibility, as registrations are an ongoing process.

Affected candidates should email Steph McBride, Director of Commencements, at to request arrangements.

What if I want to walk in another ceremony weekend, such as fall 2023?

If a candidate wishes to walk in a ceremony different than the semester they're graduating in, this is called Walking Out-of-Term (WOOT).

If this is something you are contemplating, please see the WOOT Info Page for information about the criterion for WOOTing, the WOOT application form and the submission information for your college.

Please know that accommodations will always be made for military deployments/station changes of our students and VISA expirations for our international students. 

Beyond that, colleges approve appropriate WOOT requests based on seat availability, as all ceremonies have a capacity. We do our best to meet the needs of our requestors, so long as they meet the criterion, deadlines are followed, and space is available.

What about inclement weather?

The ceremonies are rain-or-shine events.

Weather will NOT impact these ceremonies, as the Stephen C. O’Connell Center is an indoor facility.