Commencement Information for Guests

Fall 2021 Graduate Studies Commencement

Graduate Studies, together with the Graduate Council and the Graduate Student Association, will hold the Graduate Studies commencement ceremony on Thursday, December 9, 2021, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the University Credit Union Center (formally The ARC Pavilion) to honor the 2020 graduate degree recipients. The Graduate Studies commencement will also be shown live via a webcast for friends and family members unable to attend the ceremony. This is a wonderful feature that allows them to experience the event. The webcast will also stay online for several months following the ceremony. Please see the UC Davis Commencement Webcasts website.

Guest Tickets

All registered students will receive up to (4) guest tickets to attend the in-person ceremony. Ticket registration information was sent directly from the Aggie Ticket Box Office.  

COVID-19 Policy

All guests are required to show proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID-19 test result upon entering the facility. All guests are required to complete a Daily Symptom Survey prior to entering facilities on campus. Face coverings are required indoors for everyone, regardless of vaccination status. Visit the UC Davis Campus Ready information for visitors for more details. 

Ceremony Details

The ceremony will take place in the University Credit Union Center (formally The ARC Pavilion).  Please allow for extra time as traffic is particularly heavy during commencement. 

The University Credit Union Center (formally The ARC Pavilion) opens at 2 p.m. the day of the ceremony, please arrive early.  Graduates will need to be in the line-up area at 2 p.m. (only graduates are permitted in the line-up area), this will be a good time to find a seat in the University Credit Union Center.  Seating for guests is on the upper levels of the University Credit Union Center. The ceremony is three hours in length.  Other than bottled water, no food or drink is permitted inside the University Credit Union Center.  However, due to the length of the ceremony, snacks can be brought in for children and elderly guests. 

All are welcome to come and celebrate the graduate commencement ceremony as guests.  Only graduates are permitted on the floor of the arena. Guests, including children, are seated in the upper levels of the University Credit Union Center.  Strollers will need to be checked at the door.  Please come prepared as the ceremony is three hours in length, snacks can be brought in for children. The area around the University Credit Union Center is a large grassy field and children and adults can go outside during the ceremony, please bring water and sunscreen.

Family members and friends are welcome to take photographs of candidates before or after commencement. During commencement family or friends will be permitted to take photos from their seats or from the designated photo areas in the stands above the arena floor. Please be aware that only graduates are permitted on the floor of the arena and tripods are not allowed in the University Credit Union Center.  Grad Images will be taking individual photographs for each graduate after they walk off the stage.

  • Ph.D. students are arranged by faculty presenter's last name.  This organizational arrangement allows all graduating students to be presented and walk the stage with their chosen faculty member, who may be presenting several students.  Please ask your graduate the name of their faculty presenter prior to the ceremony.
  • Master’s students are arranged alphabetically by graduate program name. 

Please understand that there may be unforeseen circumstances that may require last-minute changes on the day of the ceremony. 

Mobility and Accessibility Assistance

For guests who are attending commencement ceremonies in the Pavilion and who need mobility assistance, UC Davis offers mobility assistance golf carts for passenger pick up and drop off near the Pavilion Parking Structure ONLY. Guests will be picked up/dropped off at the tent situated on Hutch Field just to the west of the bike path. Golf carts will take guests across Hutch Field to and from the SW entrance of the Pavilion. There is no mobility assistance pick up and drop off in Lot 25 due to pedestrian safety concerns with golf carts utilizing the same bike/pedestrian path.

For guests who will be arriving with walkers or wheelchairs, you and your accompanying adult may move along the bike/pedestrian path and use the SE Pavilion Concourse entrance. The next closest entrance is the NE Concourse. Please note that entrances have ramps that must be traversed. Please note that UC Davis does not provide wheelchairs or walkers nor personnel to assist with wheelchair movement.

Doors open to the Pavilion one hour before the ceremony start time. Special accommodation seating sections are available for guests with limited mobility or who use a wheelchair (who may also be accompanied by one other member of their party). Pavilion staff can direct you to these sections. The limited mobility seating sections are located in Rows E & F in sections 207, 213, 220 and 226 for all ceremonies. The wheelchair-accessible sections are located on all four Concourse corners. The building elevator is located on the Concourse Level in the SW corner. Please plan to arrive at least one hour prior to ceremony start time as mobility assistance and wheelchair accessible seating are on a first-come-first-serve basis and no special ticket is needed other than a regular commencement ticket.

For those guests with limited/no hearing attending commencements in the Pavilion, assisted listening devices may be picked up in the Pavilion Guest Services Center (located at the NE Lobby corner in the Pavilion) and/or sign language interpretation can be arranged if requested prior the ceremony. Please contact UC Davis Event Manager to arrange for sign language interpretation.

Please note UC Davis does not provide wheelchairs. Families interested in renting wheelchairs are encouraged to contact a local provider. Service Animals are allowed at commencement ceremonies. 

Overnight Accommodations, Restaurants, and Fun

Make reservations early, especially if you prefer to stay in Davis, as local hotels will fill up fast. The same goes for some of the more upscale restaurants; save yourself the wait and make a reservation in advance.  It is recommended that you celebrate with an early lunch before 2:00 p.m. or a late dinner after 6:00 p.m. Davis is located in Yolo County.  Please see the Yolo County Visitors Bureau for a listing of hotels, restaurants, and more. Sacramento is the capital of California and is located twenty miles from Davis. Please see their visitors' guide for more information.