Schedule for guests attending the ceremony

8 am Gates open

9 am Music begins

9:55 am Students proceed to McArthur Field

10 am Ceremony begins

Welcome by President Jesse Peters

Outstanding Student Recognition Awards

Commencement Address

Presentation of the Graduates

Conferring of Degrees

Recessional to the Grove for the reception

Will the ceremony be livestreamed?

Yes. Live coverage begins at 9:00 am with musicians. The ceremony starts at 10 am.  The link will be available at https://youtube.com/live/Nf3QdP9O79I.

What will the celebration include?

Participants arrive at New PE no later than 9:00 am on the day of the ceremony to check-in. Your guests will proceed to McArthur Field to await the start of the ceremony. You will receive a card with your name. Do not lose your card, it will be used to read your name on stage.

At 9:55 am Faculty Marshalls will lead graduates out of New PE to be seated at McArthur field. At 10:00 am Commencement begins.

At the conclusion of the ceremony graduates and guests exit the field and proceed to the Grove for the President’s reception.

What if I need additional accommodations?

Participants in need of disability-related accommodations in order to participate in the ceremony need to provide details of their needs at the time they register to attend the ceremony.

What if my guests need accommodations?

ODS staff members will be available at the ceremony to answer any questions about accessibility. For additional accommodations not listed below or if you have questions or concerns regarding any accommodation(s), please contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS) at 503-838-8250 or ods@wou.edu.

Listening Device and Alternative Format

Listening devices will be provided to persons with hearing disabilities upon request. The Commencement program is also available in the following alternative formats upon request:

  • Audio
  • Braille
  • Large print

Those needing a listening device or the ceremony program in any of the alternative formats listed should send a request to the Office of Disability Services (ODS) at 503-838-8250 or ods@wou.edu at least two weeks in advance.

Accessible Parking

Lot G will be reserved for disability-access parking only. Access to the lot is on the stadium’s west side, off Stadium Drive. Wheelchair users should park in Lot G for the easiest access to the wheelchair seating area at the stadium. Visitors who are dropping off a wheelchair user can do so before continuing to the general parking area.


Wheelchairs will be available at each entrance of the stadium. A volunteer will be at the entrances to transport persons using a wheelchair to the accessible seating area.

Seating and Live Stream

Reservations for seating are not available. Accessible seating for visitors, family, and friends at the Commencement Ceremony will be located behind the graduates toward the center of the stadium. There will be signage indicating where to find accessible seating. If you do not need accessible seating, please sit in the general seating area.

The ceremony will be live-streamed with captions on a large screen in the Werner University Center (WUC) in the Willamette room on the 2nd floor. Additional seating will be available in the Columbia room on the 1st floor if needed. Seating is available for the individual who needs it and one additional person with them. If you do not need accessible seating, please sit in the general seating area.

ASL Interpretation

The ceremony will be interpreted in American Sign Language (ASL) for graduating students, visitors, family, and friends. Interpretation for visitors, family, and friends will be located in the center of the stadium in the accessible seating area. Accessible seating signs will be there to guide you. 

Are tickets required?

No, tickets are not needed for the ceremony. You may bring as many family members and friends as you like. Stadium seating is first-come, first-serve.

I want to participate in the Commencement Ceremony. What do I need to do?
  • Verify that you are eligible to participate
    • Students who have graduated in the previous summer, fall, or winter terms are eligible to attend the Commencement ceremony. Students who have applied to graduate in the spring or in the summer or fall term immediately following the spring term may also participate in the ceremony.
  • Register for the ceremony. All eligible students receive an email with instructions and a link to register.
  • Order your cap and gown, they are required to participate in the ceremony.
    • Culturally significant garb is encouraged. 
  • You will be assigned a day and time to check-in and participate
  • Tell your family and friends to join you for the celebration
  • Show up and celebrate
What is the difference between Graduation and Commencement?

Graduation and Commencement are not the same. A student graduates from WOU after applying to graduate and after the Office of the Registrar determines that all university academic requirements have been met. Students may graduate at the end of any academic term. Diplomas are mailed each term to fully graduated students.

Commencement is WOU’s annual ceremony in June that recognizes graduates and those close to completing their degree. Those that attend commencement will have their names called at the ceremony and they will walk across the stage to receive a diploma cover.

Not all students who graduate choose to participate in Commencement and not all students that participate in Commencement graduate.

What do the different honors levels mean?

The faculty at WOU recognizes scholarship by conferring honors distinction on undergraduate students who have completed at least 45 credit hours through WOU and earned a cumulative WOU grade-point average of 3.50 or higher as follows:

  • Cum Laude: 3.50-3.64
  • Magna Cum Laude: 3.65-3.79
  • Summa Cum Laude: 3.80-4.00

All grade-point averages used for commencement are calculated at the conclusion of the previous winter term. Grade-point averages are recalculated when all coursework is completed and the degree is conferred.

How do I stay in touch with the university after I graduate?

Graduates may join the WOU alumni organization free of charge. Registering as an alumnus or alumna comes with multiple advantages, including updated communications from the university, a subscription to the alumni magazine, Western Edge, and discounts at places such as the WOU Bookstore, among others. To register as an alumni, visit the Alumni Registration page.

Can I get some WOU gear at the Wolfstore?

The Wolfstore will be open 8:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. for purchases by graduates and/or family members and guests.

Will there be restrooms available?

Portable restrooms will be available. Restrooms in the stadium will also be open to the public.

Contact us

University Registrar  |  registrar@wou.edu  |  503-838-8327  |  Location: Administration Building