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Frequently Asked Questions

Commencement Weekend is May 26, 27 & 28, 2017.

Will my son/daughter walk across the stage to receive his/her diploma?

Students do not cross the stage during the University Commencement ceremony. Some departments/majors in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences conduct a formal event that includes the announcement of each name and presentation of a certificate. Please check our list of department events for locations. Be sure to ask your son or daughter the name of his or her major. Diplomas will be mailed to students after the Commencement ceremony. 

What is an announcement card? What should my child’s announcement include?

You may use announcements to inform family and friends of the date, time, and place of Commencement. A sample graduation announcement is provided in the Commencement information packet mailed to families in January.

For customized announcements from Balfour you may order online

You may have questions about degree information to print on announcements.

All CALS Students will graduate with a Bachelor of Science Degree. If you’d like to include major/minors on the announcement you may get that information from your student.

Additionally some students will be eligible for Latin Honors, or completing an additional Distinction in Research. Honors and Research are not finalized until all grades have been received in late May. You can contact your student to see if they may qualify for honors

A sample customized announcement follows. Additional non-customized Cornell graduation announcements may be purchased at The Cornell Store.

Class of 2017

The Faculty, The Board of Trustees,
and The University President
announce that
Big Red Bear
is a candidate for the degree of
Bachelor of Science
Applied Economics
with a concentration in Marketing

Animal Science
with a Minor in Education

at the
One hundred forty-ninth
Cornell University Commencement Ceremony
Sunday, the twenty-eighth of May
Two Thousand Seventeen
Eleven o'clock in the morning
Schoellkopf Stadium
Ithaca, New York

Who can I ask for help during Commencement Events?

Cornell staff members will be readily available during all Commencement events. If you have a question or require assistance, please locate someone in a red shirt to help you. We’ll be happy to meet you!

How do I get to campus?

Directions to and around campus may be found at

Where can I find dining options on/off campus?

Light refreshments, including snacks and drinks, will be served in the CALS Reception tent on the Agriculture Quad after the Commencement ceremony. For additional dining options on campus and around the Ithaca area, please check out

What else do I need to know?

Please familiarize yourself with maps/directions prior to Commencement so that you may easily navigate all the events on campus. It is also important to know your child’s major!

Prepare for a lot of walking. Events are far apart and you will have a long day. Although buses are available, you will walk to and from bus stops, and to locations not served by the bus. If you or anyone in your party has mobility issues, we strongly urge you to make use of the assistance available from the University Commencement Office. You must register with the university in advance in order for special parking and seating options may be ensured.

The outdoor events will take place in almost any kind of weather condition, possibly with changing conditions on the same day. Although the University has an indoor plan, it would be rare for this plan to be implemented. We’ll be outdoors whether it is warm, hot, sunny, windy, rain, or cold. Please be prepared for a wide range of temperatures and conditions.

Seating: Paper towels can be great to bring in case the stadium seats are wet from rain or dew. For the CALS reception, bring a blanket to enjoy a picnic and rest after a long morning of festivities.

For additional information, please visit the Cornell University Commencement site,