Graduate Commencement

Learn more about our Graduate Student Leadership Award recipient Ali Raza.
Graduate students lined up by stage at commencement

Action Items for Graduation

Graduate Commencement Booklet (PDF)

The Graduate Commencement ceremony is a ticketed event. Each graduate may reserve four (4) guest tickets for this event. Instructions on how to reserve tickets has been shared with graduates at their email address.

Clearance for Graduation and Confirmation of Attendance

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

It is essential that we know the exact number of students attending the ceremony. If you will not be able to attend, please contact the Registrar’s Office by Friday, May 3 at 978.665.4196 or


If you took courses at another university, transcripts must be received by June 2.

Caps and Gowns

All cap and gown packages can be purchased through the bookstore in Hammond Hall or through the bookstore’s website. Packages will be available to purchase approximately 4 weeks prior to graduation and will appear on the bookstore website when available. Masters packages are $65 and CAGS packages are $67. The hood distinguishes the institution from which the wearer is graduating and the degree being awarded. The bookstore hours the week of commencement will be Monday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Tuesday - Thursday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Please contact the bookstore with any questions regarding graduation regalia at 978.665.4026.


At graduation, you will receive a diploma cover with a certificate enclosed. All diplomas will be mailed to graduates by early July. Your name will be engraved on your diploma as you indicated on your commencement application.

Ceremony Information

Commencement Ceremony Schedule

Commencement is scheduled for Thursday, May 16 at the Athletics and Recreation Center. There is no commencement rehearsal. Please arrive no later than 5:30 p.m. Volunteers will be available to assist you. The ceremony will be approximately an hour and a half.

The ceremony will also be streamed live on FATV (and digital downloads of the ceremony will be posted later at

Guest seating area will open at 4:30 p.m. Graduates will be lined up alphabetically within their school and by graduate degree. You will 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 school dean. Your name will be read as you cross the stage and receive your diploma cover from President Richard S. Lapidus. Please return to your seat promptly upon exiting the stage.

Commencement Ceremony Decorum

Commencement is a true milestone for each and every student. We welcome your excitement and enthusiasm as we celebrate this grand occasion. We also ask that our graduates and their guests respect the importance and dignity of the proceedings by staying for the entire ceremony. Guests who leave early may distract from the event, which would be disrespectful to the other graduates and their families.


Directions to the campus and parking lots can be found on our maps and directions page. Shuttle buses will be in operation between the Intermodal Center parking garage and the Athletics and Recreation Center from 5 to 9 p.m.

Graduates and Guests with Disabilities

Graduates and any guests who have a disability can request accommodations through Disability Services. To request accommodations, please complete the disability accommodations form by May 2 or contact Disability Services 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. Please contact Disability Services to discuss seating near the ASL interpreter. Large print and Braille copies of the commencement program are available with advance notice. The event will be captioned live online at Guests requesting accommodations are allowed to have one additional guest seated with them.


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 digital download will be sent to your university email address courtesy of the Fitchburg State University Alumni Association.

Commencement Honoree

Graduate Student Leadership Award: Ali Raza

Portrait of Ali Raza Graduate Student Leadership Award recipient May 2024

Ali Raza fully embraced student life at Fitchburg State University upon enrolling in its graduate program in computer science in 2022. Hailing from Pakistan, Raza encountered significant challenges, including adjusting to a new culture and educational system. However, Raza tackled each obstacle with unwavering determination, flexibility, and perseverance.

Raza's student leadership journey began in fall 2022 when he represented Fitchburg State at the Commit to Excellence Leadership Conference in Boston, a transformative experience that fueled his personal and leadership growth, empowering him to emerge as a leader in his own life.

In his second year, Raza actively participated in campus extracurriculars such as the Campus Ambassadors Christian Fellowship, Fitchburg Activities Board, and Outdoor Adventure Club, broadening his social circle and cultural understanding. Beyond academics, Raza served as a resident assistant in campus housing, fostering a supportive environment and honing his interpersonal skills. Raza's commitment to leadership shone brightly as he organized a Be a Leader Conference in spring 2024, featuring four speakers who shared their leadership journeys, and inspiring fellow students to strive for greatness.

Raza also completed a remote internship as a technical analyst for NETSOL Technologies. Recognizing his leadership potential, the company selected Raza to represent them at the Canadian Lender Summit in Toronto in fall 2023.

Post-graduation, Raza aims to pursue professional opportunities in computer science while continuing his journey of leadership and community engagement.

Important Contact Information

University Police

University Police provides services to promote campus-wide safety and is available to assist the campus community 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
University Police Station
32 Clinton St
(across from the Recreation Center)