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Graduate Commencement Ceremony

Clearance for Graduation and Candidates for GraduationCaps and Gowns | Hood Color by Division | Ceremony Schedule | President's Reception | Diplomas | Parking | Graduates and Guests with Disabilities | Photographs & DVDs | Important Contact Information

Clearance for Graduation and Candidates for Graduation

To confirm you have been cleared to participate in graduation as well as to indicate if you will attend, please log into your Web4 account. Click on Student, Student Records, then View Graduation Application. 

It is essential that we know the exact number of students attending the ceremony. If your situation changes, and you will not be able to attend, please contact the Registrar’s Office by Friday, April 27 at 978.665.4196 or

Note: If you took courses at another university, transcripts must be received by May 21.

Caps and Gowns

All caps and gowns can be purchased through the bookstore in Hammond Hall beginning April 18. The cost for the entire package is $68. The hood distinguishes the institution from which the wearer is graduating and the degree being awarded.

The bookstore hours for the week of graduation are: Monday through Wednesday, 8:30 am to 6 pm; and Thursday, 8:30 am to 7 pm. Please contact the bookstore directly with any questions concerning academic regalia at 978.665.4026. 

Hood Color by Division


Applied Communication – White
Arts Education – Light Blue
Counseling – White
English Studies – White
History - White
Interdisciplinary Studies – White


Business Administration – Drab
Computer Science – Golden Yellow
Occupational Education – Light Blue
Technology Education – Light Blue


Curriculum and Teaching – Light Blue
Early Childhood Education – Light Blue
Educational Leadership and Management – Light Blue
Elementary Education – Light Blue
Middle School Education – Light Blue
Secondary Education – Light Blue
Special Education – Light Blue


Biology – Golden Yellow
Nursing – Apricot
Science Education – Light Blue

Commencement Ceremony Schedule

Commencement is scheduled for Thursday, May 17 at 6:30 pm in the Athletics & Recreation Center. There is no commencement rehearsal. Please arrive by 5:45 pm. Volunteers will be available to assist you. The ceremony will be approximately an hour and a half.

Guest seating area will open at 4:30 pm. Graduates will be lined up alphabetically within their division and major. You will then be given an index card on which your name has been typed. If you have a name that is difficult to pronounce, please provide the phonetic spelling. When you approach the platform, this card will be handed to the reader. The chair of your program will lead the graduates on stage and present them to the president and division dean. Your name will be read as you cross the stage to be hooded by the deans and receive your diploma cover from President Richard S. Lapidus. Please return to your seat promptly upon exiting the stage.

President’s Reception

President Lapidus will hold a reception for graduates, guests, and faculty in the Athletics and Recreation Center following the ceremony. All are invited. Please take this opportunity to say farewell to faculty and friends.


All diplomas will be mailed to graduates the week of June 4 to be placed in the diploma cover you receive at the ceremony. Your name will be engraved on your diploma as you indicated on your commencement application. 

Parking and Services

Guests should park in either the Intermodal Center parking garage, which has been reserved for this event, or the North Street or Green Street lots. Shuttle buses will be in operation between the Intermodal Center parking garage and the Recreation Center between 5 and 9 pm.

Parking attendants provided by the university will be stationed at the Intermodal Center parking garage to welcome guests.

In addition, student groups will be on hand selling flowers, water and snacks.

Graduates and Guests with Disabilities

Graduates and any guests who have a disability can request accommodations through the Disability Services office. To request accommodations, please complete the online form found at by May 4 or contact the Disability Services office by phone, 978.665.4020, or email All requests will be reviewed, and seating and/or parking passes will be mailed to the address provided.

The ceremony will be ASL interpreted for hearing impaired guests. The captions are also broadcast live. Large print and Braille copies of the commencement program are available with advance notice. Guests with a disability are allowed to have one additional guest seated with them.

Photographs/DVD Recording

During the ceremony, access to the stage area for picture taking or videotaping by guests will be prohibited. Please relay this information to your guests.

A professional photograph will be taken as you receive your diploma cover and congratulations from the president, and a free 5x7 print will be mailed to your home address courtesy of the Fitchburg State University Alumni Association.

The contract for graduation photographs has been awarded to Hockmeyer Studios, Inc., P.O. Box 687, Amesbury, MA 01913.

The photographer will be contacting you in writing at your home address with specifics on ordering additional photographs and the cost. Any other photography company that telephones you is not sanctioned by the university. 

DVDs and Blu-ray discs of the entire ceremony will be available for purchase through Fitchburg Access Television. Please contact them directly at 978.343.0834 to order a ceremony DVD or Blu-ray disc. The cost is $16 for a DVD or $21 for Blu-ray, plus shipping.

Important Contact Information

Registrar — 978.665.4196
Academic Affairs — 978.665.3168
Graduate and Continuing Education — 978.665.3182
Bookstore — 978.665.4026
Alumni — 978.665.3025
Campus Police — 978.665.3111
Disability Services — 978.665.4020