Commencement Parking & Seating
Parking is very limited on campus. ALL traffic will be stopped at the entrance of the College. Motorists will be directed to other parking areas with the College shuttle service providing transportation to the Abbey Church on Friday afternoon and to the Student Union on Saturday morning.
Handicapped parking will be available for anyone displaying appropriate permits on their vehicles. You will be directed to the handicap parking area by Campus Security.
Access to the gym will be by ticket only, seating is open. The doors to the Student Union will open at 8:30 a.m. and all guests should plan to arrive and be seated by 9:30 a.m. Commencement will begin promptly at 10 a.m.
Out of respect to the graduates and their guests, there will be no seating in the gym after 9:45 a.m. until the graduates have processed in and are seated.
The College will again issue commencement tickets to each graduating senior. Each graduate will receive four (4) tickets for their family members and guests to attend the commencement ceremony in the Ralph Nolan Gymnasium. The number of tickets allocated is based on the number of graduates and the seating capacity of the gymnasium.
However, we are not limiting the number of people from each family who may attend commencement. We have for the last several years provided a simulcast into the O’Malley-McAllister Auditorium, which is located in the same building right across the hall from the gymnasium. Family and friends who do not have tickets will be able to sit in very comfortable seating and watch the commencement program on the large screen in the air conditioned auditorium and no tickets are required. There is seating for an additional 540 people in the auditorium and these will be available on a first come, first served basis. In addition to these seats, we will also provide 100 additional seats in the Music Rehearsal Room in the Student Union with a large screen which will be especially convenient for people with small children not able to sit during the entire ceremony. We will provide a TV screen in the hallway between the gym and auditorium. In addition, the ceremony will be streamed live over the web for anyone not able to come to campus.
You will need to pick up your tickets from the Operations Office located at 215 M Street beginning April 20 from 7 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. and ending Monday, April 27 at Noon. You must present your student ID in order to pick up the tickets and will sign a document indicating that you received them. If you do not need all four (4) tickets, please only take what you need so we can distribute extra tickets to those who may need them.
After the original tickets are distributed, we will determine whether we have extra tickets and those tickets will be available for additional requests beginning on April 28. Requests for any additional tickets will be done by the graduates only online and the number of additional tickets that may be requested will be determined after the initial ticket distribution. This will also be done on a first come, first served basis and once the number of additional tickets has been requested the online availability will automatically end. You will be able to find a link to the online request form only on April 28 and only while tickets remain available.
Doors open and tickets will be accepted starting at 9:00 a.m. on the west side entrance into the gym (please watch for signs to indicate ticket-only entrance). Once your guests are seated in the gym they will not be able to leave or they will lose their seats. Bathrooms inside the gym will be open. Doors will also open at 9:00 a.m. for seating in the O’Malley-McAllister Auditorium through the main doors of the Student Union. At 9:45 a.m., ingress into either entrance will be halted while the graduates process into the building and into the gymnasium.
We hope that you will understand that a lot of thought went into the decision to limit seating in the gymnasium. As our student population has grown, it is natural that the number of graduates increases every year. We want to make the graduation experience the best possible for all parents and family of the graduates but seating in the gym is getting tighter every year.
Please also remember that this means that seating for Baccalaureate Mass on Friday is also limited as the venue is much smaller. We will not issue tickets for Mass, but will allow parents and family into the Abbey Church on a first come-first served basis (no saving of seats is allowed). The total number of seats in the church is approximately 900, which includes additional chairs that are added for the occasion and simulcasts into the Guadalupe Chapel and crypt area. Of this number, about 425 will be taken up by the students and faculty and staff, so you can see the problem. We appreciate your consideration of limiting the number of people attending the Baccalaureate Mass.
The ceremony will be simulcast into the O’Malley-McAllister Auditorium (across the hall from the Ralph Nolan Gymnasium) and the band rehearsal room (first floor, Student Union).