Commencement Information



This is the College of Charleston's official commencement information site. Please check back regularly for updates made throughout the year. We are excited to have you join us at one of our commencement ceremonies and hope you have a wonderful time!

2019-2020 Commencement Ceremonies

Winter 2019 Commencement 
Saturday, December 14, 2019 
TD Arena, 301 Meeting Street

Spring 2020 Commencement 
Friday, May 8, 2020 and Saturday, May 9, 2020
Cistern Yard, 66 George Street

Announcements & Upcoming Events

Apply to Graduate

A graduation application is required before a student is eligible to participate in an upcoming Winter or Spring Commencement Ceremony. Failure to complete the application promptly can result in a delay in both degree posting and diploma ordering, and it can also result in the student's name being omitted from the commencement program and ceremony ticket list. (Participation in commencement is assumed and encouraged, however, it is not mandatory.) 

  » Undergraduate Student Graduation Application
  » Graduate Student Graduation Application




Winter 2019 Commencement Ceremony

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*Information subject to update. Please check back regularly for updates. 

Winter 2019 Commencement - Saturday, December 14, 2019 

All academic schools with candidates participate in one ceremony in TD Arena on Saturday, December 14, 2019 for the winter commencement exercises.

  • 12:30 pm: Doors open to guests. 
  • 12:30 pm: Master's degree candidates should assemble in Media Room, and all Bachelor's degree candidates should assemble in practice gym.
  • 2:00 pm: Ceremony begins. 

Ceremony Location

The Winter commencement ceremony will be held in the TD Arena, located at 301 Meeting St., and a ticket is required for admittance. One commencement ticket per adult/child/baby is required for entry.

Viewing the Ceremony Live from Off Campus
For guests who can’t make it to campus, live video from each ceremony will be broadcast on the College’s Facebook page and at cofc.edu. Additionally, a recording of the ceremony will be posted online shortly after the event.

In the event of rain, no change in venue
The Winter Commencement ceremony is indoors, so the location will not change in the event of rain. If the event of inclement weather, an announcement will be displayed on the College's homepage (www.cofc.edu) as well as on local TV and radio stations as outlined on our inclement weather plan.

Admissions and Ticket Information

Students typically receive TEN tickets for Winter Commencement. Tickets are required for all family and guests viewing the ceremony in the TD Arena. One commencement ticket per guest is required for entry. Tickets will be distributed electronically to graduation candidates during the Fall 2019 semester. Tickets may be reserved by students via MyCharleston from 3:00 PM, November 13, 2019 through 12:00 PM, December 13, 2019. Please see Ticket Reservation Information for instructions. There is no charge for commencement ceremony tickets.

For Your Safety, Our Clear Bag Protocol

In order to expedite entry and provide a safe and secure environment for our students, faculty, guests, and other visitors, the College of Charleston has implemented a Clear Bag Protocol for its ticketed events, including Commencement. Only clear bags and small clutch size purses are allowed in the TD Arena. Bags will be checked by security upon entry. Please read our Prohibited Items List (which includes, but is not limited to, unapproved bags, strollers, alcohol, smoking, vaping, drones, and weapons). Please note that the College of Charleston is a Tobacco-Free campus. 

For graduating students, there will be a bag check conducted by security before the ceremony in the student assembly area. Only clear bags and small clutch size purses are allowed. You are advised to bring as few personal belongings as necessary. No bags will be allowed on stage. No outside food or beverages will be allowed in the assembly area. Please do not bring opened outside beverages because water will be provided on stage to graduates. The following items are prohibited: alcohol, smoking, vaping, weapons, and open, outside beverages. Please view the Alcohol Policy. Staff will monitor entrances and exits with support from Public Safety and our security team.

Speakers and Honorary Degrees

College of Charleston alumna Mitsy Mangum ’87, Managing Director for Lakeview Capital Partners, will be the commencement speaker at the College’s winter commencement ceremony on Dec. 14, 2019. In addition to Mangum, the College of Charleston will present an honorary degree to Bill Finn, one of the first members of the School of Business Board of Governors. For more information, please visit the Commencement Speaker(s) and Honorary Degree Recipients.

Parking / Guest Drop-off

Drop off for guests with limited mobility, or who are using mobility devices, is on Meeting Street directly in front of the main entrance to TD Arena.

Accessible parking for those with disability placards / license plates is available in any of the nearby garages free of charge.
The closest garages are the Gaillard Garage, located at 32 Alexander Street, and the George Garage, located at 34 St. Philip Street.

Graduates and guests should park at one of the public garages near the TD Arena. The closest garages are the Gaillard Garage, located at 32 Alexander Street, and the George Garage, located at 34 St. Philip Street. The rate for each of these locations is $1 per each half hour or portion thereof, with a daily maximum of $18 per calendar day.

The College of Charleston surface parking lots will be available only to faculty, staff, and students working the ceremony.

Additional Information

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Spring 2020 Commencement Ceremonies

*Information below subject to update. Please check back regularly for updates.

Spring 2020 Commencement - Friday, May 8 and Saturday, May 9, 2020

There are three commencement ceremonies, broken up into groups based on a student’s academic school. Beforehand, graduating students must attend a mandatory rehearsal during the week before commencement. Each commencement ceremony will last about 2 1/2 hours and will begin at the following times:

4:00 PM, FRIDAY, May 8, 2020
Graduate School; School of Humanities and Social Sciences; School of Professional Studies

  • 2:30 pm: Gates to Cistern Yard and doors to all satellite viewing areas open to guests. 
  • 2:30 pm: Master's degree candidates should assemble on the third floor of Robert Scott Small, and all Bachelor's degree candidates should assemble in Maybank Hall.
  • 4:00 pm: Ceremony begins. 

10:00 AM, SATURDAY, May 9, 2020
 School of the Arts; School of Business

  • 8:30 am: Gates to Cistern Yard and doors to all satellite viewing areas open. 
  • 9:00 am: All Bachelor's degree candidates should assemble in Maybank Hall.
  • 10:00 am: Ceremony begins. 

4:00 PM, SATURDAY, May 9, 2020
School of Education, Health, and Human Performance; School of Languages, Cultures and World Affairs; School of Sciences and Mathematics  

  • 2:30 pm: Gates to Cistern Yard and doors to all satellite viewing areas open. 
  • 3:00 pm: All Bachelor's degree candidates should assemble in Maybank Hall.
  • 4:00 pm: Ceremony begins.

Announcements for Students

There are no announcements posted at this time. Please visit our Additional Events for updates about future senior class meetings and graduation receptions. 

Ceremony Location

Each Spring Commencement ceremony is scheduled to be held in the Cistern Yard, located at 66 George St., but a ticket is required for admittance. One commencement ticket per adult/child/baby is required for entry.

Additional On-Campus Locations to View the Live Ceremony (no tickets required)

There will also be seven satellite viewing locations within a 100 yards of the Cistern, where additional guests can watch the ceremonies live. Tickets are not required for admission to these sites, all of which have air-conditioning and easily accessible restrooms. They are:

  • The Stern Student Center Ballroom on the fourth floor of the Stern Student Center at 71 George St.
  • Child-friendly rooms on the second floor of the Stern Student Center at 71 George St.
  • The Recital Hall of the Simons Center for the Arts at 54 St. Philip St.
  • The Emmett Robinson Theatre at the Simons Center for the Arts at 54 St. Philip St.
  • Rita Hollings Science Center (Rooms 101, 102, 103) at 58 Coming Street.

Viewing the Ceremony from Off-Campus

For guests who can’t make it to campus, live video from each ceremony will be broadcast on the College’s Facebook page and at cofc.edu. Additionally, a recording will be posted online shortly after the ceremonies. 

In Case of Inclement Weather

If the event of inclement weather, an announcement will be displayed on the College's homepage (www.cofc.edu) as well as on local TV and radio stations as outline on our inclement weather plan.

Admissions and Ticket Information

Students receive FOUR tickets for Spring Commencement. Tickets are required for all family and guests viewing the ceremony in the Cistern Yard. One commencement ticket per adult/child/baby is required for entry into the Cistern Yard. Tickets are not required for guests to enter designated satellite viewing locations. Tickets will be distributed electronically to graduation candidates in April. Please see Ticket Information. There is no charge for commencement ceremony tickets.

Commencement Speakers

The Commencement Speakers for the Spring 2020 Commencement will be determined and announced in the future. 

For Your Safety, Our Clear Bag Protocol

In order to expedite entry and provide a safe and secure environment for our students, faculty, guests, and other visitors, the College of Charleston has implemented a Clear Bag Protocol for its ticketed events, including Commencement. 

Only clear bags and small clutch size purses are allowed in the Cistern Yard. Bags will be checked by security upon entry to the Cistern Yard (or TD Arena rain location). Please read our Prohibited Items List (which includes, but is not limited to, unapproved bags, strollers, alcohol, smoking, vaping, drones, and weapons). Please note that the College of Charleston is a Tobacco-Free campus. 

For graduating students, there will be a bag check conducted by security before the ceremony in the student assembly area. Only clear bags and small clutch size purses are allowed. You are advised to bring as few personal belongings as necessary. No bags will be allowed on stage. No outside food or beverages will be allowed in the assembly area. Please do not bring opened outside beverages because water will be provided on stage to graduates. The following items are prohibited: alcohol, smoking, vaping, weapons, and open, outside beverages. Please view the Alcohol Policy. Staff will monitor entrances and exits with support from Public Safety and our security team.

Additional Information