Graduate Students

Graduation Requirements

A student approaching the end of his/her program must follow procedures set by Graduate Studies in order to graduate.

Participation in Ceremonies

Doctoral or MFA students who will not be completing all degree requirements by the Commencement ceremony date must complete the Graduate Studies request to participate in Commencement ceremony form. For any questions regarding eligibility, please contact the Graduate Studies Advisement Coordinator at 277-2711.

Students eligible to participate in convocation are those who complete their degree requirements by the end of the current semester. Exceptions to this policy are determined by each school, college, and/or department.

Graduate Honors


A distinction is awarded to students who pass the master's/doctoral exam with distinction. It will appear on the transcripts but not on the diploma. The University has designated a two-color cherry and silver honor cord for Master and doctoral candidates graduating with “Passed with Distinction.” The cords may be purchased at the UNM Bookstore. For more information, please visit

Graduation Ceremonies

Convocation Ceremonies

Convocation ceremonies are celebrations hosted by individual schools, colleges, and/or departments just for their graduates. Each of these ceremonies may be different in form and structure and may range from a formal graduation ceremony to a casual reception. Specific questions about your convocation should be directed to your convocation coordinator. See the Schedule of Events for ceremony dates and times.

Graduate Commencement Ceremony

Thursday, December 15, 2016 at 6:00 pm, WisePies Arena aka The Pit

This is the campus-wide graduation ceremony for all master's and doctoral degree candidates from all schools and colleges. The University president presides over the ceremony and confers degrees to students during the formal procession. Graduates process across the stage to be recognized individually and will be given a diploma cover. Doctoral and terminal master's (Master of Fine Arts) degree candidates will be hooded.


All degree candidates who plan to participate in the graduation commencement ceremony and/or a convocation ceremony must complete the online sign-up form. The signup deadline is: Sunday, December 4, 2016

Tickets are not required for guests at the Graduate Commencement ceremony.

Graduate Commencement Program Listing

The Graduate Commencement program lists Fall 2016 pending degree candidates. Summer graduates are listed in the following Fall commencement program. Your name will be listed as it exists in your student record. Official name change requests can be made through the Office of Records and Registration before our program publication deadline of Friday, November 11, 2016 . You will also need to notify your advisor of any changes.For more information see the Change Authorization Form.

If you have a privacy flag set in your student record, your name will NOT be printed in the program unless you do ONE of the following before our program publication deadlines:

By TBD: Contact the Office of the Registrar at the campus where you attend to have your privacy flag removed permanently from your academic record.

Or by Friday, November 11, 2016 : Sign a 'Limited Privacy Waiver' in our office (please remember to bring a picture ID) in order to release your directory information for commencement purposes only.

For more information see Fastinfo Answer ID 2933.

Graduate Commencement Ceremony Instructions

General information

Hooding of Doctoral and Terminal Master's Degree Candidates

Academic Regalia (Cap & Gown)


Arrive to the University Arena wearing cap and gown for processional lineup at 5:15 pm. Upon arrival please enter through the northwest entrance of the arena, and proceed up the stairs to the 2nd floor. Please see the Pit overview arena map. Doctoral degree candidates will lineup on the North upper level of the arena.

Please note that traffic and parking will be very congested. Plan to arrive early to allow time to park and walk from the parking lot to the University Arena. Parking for Commencement is free.

Name Card

Locate your name card at either the Doctoral table (include Master of Fine Arts) or the Masters table. Take the card and go sit in the area that is near the lineup area. For your reference, ceremony instructions are printed on the back of your name card.

Line Up and Processional

Marshals will instruct you when they are ready to line up students. Faculty hooders will process into arena and be seated together with the doctoral candidates. The marshals will tell you when to start processing to the floor, and marshals on the floor will instruct you where to sit. Coats, purses and other personal items should be left with friends or family.)

Individual Recognition

Pay attention to the master of ceremonies who alerts you to approach the stage. Marshals will also instruct you when it is time to go to the platform. Readers on the platform will take your card and read your name.

Graduation Photo

While you process across the stage for individual recognition, your photo will be taken by Grad Images. Proofs will be mailed to you by Grad Images if you have provided us contact information.

Ceremony Video

The ceremony will be videotaped and DVDs will be available for $20 per copy. Please place your order online on the Graduation Photos & Video page.


When the ceremony ends, you will be instructed by the marshals to join the recessional. You can arrange ahead of time where you will meet family and friends outside the arena after the ceremony.

Quick Notes: