Harvard College Alumni
Commencement Information for the College Class of 2015
Events involving family members of the College Class of 2015 graduates begin on Tuesday, May 26, 2015. You should plan to participate in all the activities and be in Cambridge from Tuesday, May 26 through Thursday, May 28, 2015, with May 28 (Commencement) being the most important day to attend.
Please check back soon for a detailed schedule of events for the Class of 2015. For reference, last year's schedule is below.
Commencement Information for the College Class of 2014
Events involving family members of the College Class of 2014 graduates begin on Tuesday, May 27. You should plan to participate in all the activities and be in Cambridge from Tuesday, May 27 through Thursday, May 29, 2014, with May 29 (Commencement) being the most important day to attend.
Graduation Week Schedule for Students and Family/Guests
Tuesday, May 27
|11:00 AM||Phi Beta Kappa Literary Exercises
Sanders Theatre (open to the public)
|2:00 PM||Baccalaureate Service
Memorial Church (service for students only)
Tercentenary Theatre (audio for families and guests)
|3:30 PM||Class of 2014 Picture
Widener Library Steps
|6:00 PM||Class of 2014 Family Dinner and Party
Soldiers Field Athletic Area
Wednesday, May 28
|11:30 AM||ROTC Commissioning Ceremony
|Noon||Class Day Picnic
|2:00 PM||Class Day Exercises
with featured Class Day Speaker
|5:00 PM||House Masters’ Receptions
|8:00 PM||Band, Choral, and Glee Club Concert
Thursday, May 29
|9:45 AM||363rd Commencement: The Morning Exercises
|Noon||Diploma Presentation and Luncheon
|2:30 PM||363rd Commencement: The Afternoon Program
Annual Meeting of the Harvard Alumni Association
with featured Commencement Speaker
Open weekdays Wednesday, May 7, through Wednesday, May 28, 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Seniors are invited to come to Senior Desk at the Harvard Alumni Association offices, located at 124 Mount Auburn Street, 6th Floor in Cambridge, to pick up all of the tickets to which they are entitled and to purchase additional tickets. This is the only way for students to pick up all tickets.
When students arrive at Senior Desk, they can purchase additional tickets with cash or credit card and/or pick up tickets that their parents have requested and purchased in advance.
Advanced ticket purchasing for parents and guests is now closed. Additional ticket purchases after this time must be done by students at Senior Desk.
Total Tickets Given
Tuesday, May 27
|Phi Beta Kappa Exercises||Not required||Not required|
|Baccalaureate Service||Not required||Not required|
|Class of 2014 Picture||Not required||Not required|
|Family Dinner and Party*||1 (senior only)||$20 each|
Wednesday, May 28
|ROTC Commissioning Ceremony||Not required||Not required|
|Class Day Picnic*||3 (including senior)||$10 each|
|Class Day Exercises||5 (including senior)||Free
|House Masters' Receptions||Not required||Not required|
|Band, Choral, and Glee Club Concert||Not required||Not required|
Thursday, May 29
|Morning Exercises**||4 (not required for senior)||Not available|
|House Diploma Presentation||Not required||Not required|
|House Luncheon||3 (including senior)||$15 each|
|The Afternoon Program||5 (including senior)||May be available
*Ticket reservations for these events must be made in advance, either online (April 1–May 2) or at Senior Desk (May 7–28).
**For all ticketed events except the Morning Exercises, seniors will require one of the provided tickets. For the Morning Exercises, the regalia and lanyard are the senior’s ticket for entry.
Class of 2014 Family Dinner and Party
Tuesday, May 27 at 6:00 PM
Enjoy dinner and drinks with your senior, as well as other families and guests. Tickets are complimentary for the graduating senior and $20 per each additional person (children under 5 are free). All additional reservations must be made in advance, either online or at Senior Desk. Seniors are encouraged to check with their parents first before purchasing tickets on campus. If parents have ordered tickets online, seniors may pick them up at Senior Desk.
Class Day Picnic
Wednesday, May 28 at Noon
Enjoy a casual lunch in the Old Yard before the start of the Class Day Exercises. Tickets are complimentary for the graduating senior and two guests and $10 per each additional person. All additional reservations must be made in advance, either online or at Senior Desk. Seniors are encouraged to check with their parents first before purchasing tickets on campus. If parents have ordered tickets online, seniors may pick them up at Senior Desk.
Class Day Exercises
Wednesday, May 28 at 2:00 PM
For seniors and guests, featuring the presentation of the Ames Awards, the Harvard and Ivy Orations, and the Class Ode, sung to the tune of "Fair Harvard." A remarkable display of eloquence and entertainment by fellow classmates, complemented by the 2014 Class Day speaker. Each senior is entitled to five complimentary tickets. Graduating seniors will require one of these tickets for entry. Additional tickets will also be available at Senior Desk.
Commencement—The Morning Exercises
Thursday, May 29 at 9:45 AM (gates open at 6:45 AM)
For the Morning Exercises, seniors in academic regalia (cap and gown) do not need tickets for the Commencement Morning Exercises in Tercentenary Theatre (security lanyards and regalia are required for entry). Family members and guests will require tickets for the Commencement Morning Exercises. The Commencement Morning Exercises are extremely crowded (over 32,000 people attend) and, consequently, tickets are limited to a maximum of four per graduating senior (no exceptions). Please note that a ticket does not guarantee a seat. The sale of Commencement tickets is also strictly prohibited. For more information about the schedule for the Morning Exercises please visit the University Commencement website. To learn more about the history of the Spirit and Spectacle of Harvard Commencement, please visit this page.
Commencement—Diploma Presentation and Luncheon
Thursday, May 29 at Noon
Between the Commencement Morning Exercises and Afternoon Program, in each House, there is a diploma presentation ceremony and luncheon. This is the ceremony where the graduate actually receives his/her diploma. Tickets are not required for the ceremony but are required for the luncheon. Tickets for the luncheon are complimentary for the graduating senior and two guests. Additional guest tickets can be purchased beginning in May through the House office or during the lunch from the checker for $15 each (cash only on the day of Commencement).
Commencement—The Afternoon Program
Thursday, May 29 at 2:30 PM
Students will receive five Afternoon Program tickets (one for the graduate and four for guests), where addresses by the Harvard President and the Commencement Speaker are scheduled. Additional Afternoon Program tickets may become available at Senior Desk. For more information about the schedule for the Afternoon Program please visit the University Commencement website or the Harvard Alumni Association's Annual Meeting website.
1. Where can I purchase graduation announcements?
The Coop offers personalized announcements with the graduate's name, degree, and concentration. For more information or to order, visit the Coop, visit thecoop.com, or call 800-368-1882.
The Harvard Shop, a division of Harvard Student Agencies, also offers personalized graduation announcements. For more information or to order, visit the Harvard Shop at 52 JFK Street, visit CBgrad.com, or call 800-433-0296.
2. How can I obtain academic regalia (cap and gown)?
Cap and gown rentals will be available prior to May 29 in the Textbook department on the third floor of the Coop on Palmer Street. For more information, visit thecoop.com or call 617-499-2122.
Harvard College undergraduates do not have to reserve academic regalia (cap and gown) in advance.
3. How can I purchase Class of 2014 merchandise?
Seniors and parents will be able to purchase class merchandise, brought to you by the Senior Class Committee, through Harvard14.org/store. All items will be delivered to seniors in the beginning of May.
4. When must seniors vacate their rooms?
All seniors must vacate their rooms by 5:00 PM on Friday, May 30, 2014 (no exceptions).
5. Are recordings of the Commencement Week activities available for purchase?
Broadcast-quality, multiple-camera DVD recordings are available of the Commencement Morning Exercises and the afternoon Annual Meeting of the Harvard Alumni Association held in Tercentenary Theatre. Class Day Exercises (Wednesday afternoon) are also available on DVD. The morning and afternoon Commencement Day recordings include commentary during the processions. Single-camera recordings of diploma ceremonies at the Houses may be available based on House.
For purchase of or information about videos in Tercentenary Theatre, contact Commencement Video at 617-884-6000. For purchase of or information about videos at Houses, contact your House Administrator. For audio only, call the Media and Technology Services Office at 617-495-9460.
6. Are there special arrangements for persons with disabilities?
Yes. There is an accessible seating section available for persons with disabilities in Tercentenary Theatre on Commencement Day. For more information, please visit the main Commencement site here.
Other commencement week activities may also be accessible depending on location. Please call the Alumni Association at 617-496-7001 or email Clint Ficula to find out more.
7. How do I order a copy of the Class Picture?
If you are not able to pick up an order form at the time the picture is taken, you can pick one up at 124 Mount Auburn Street, 6th floor at any time. You can also contact: Panfoto, panfoto.com, P.O. Box 650063, West Newton, MA 02465-0063, (781-788-9595, Fax: 781-788-4999).
8. Is there parking available during Commencement Week?
Parking during this time is limited. More detailed information can be found on this page.
9. How do I purchase a copy of the Harvard College Yearbook?
Orders can be placed by going to the website: harvardyearbook.com.
10. How do I get added to the Social Senior Class List to receive information about Senior Events?
Please either complete this online, secure survey or email Clint Ficula with your name, House, mailing address, and parent contact information.
11. How can I find out if I am officially considered a senior?
If you want to walk at Commencement but are unsure of your senior standing please contact your House Administrator or Allston Burr Resident Dean or contact the Registrar directly.
12. What if I need to invite family or friends from overseas who may require a visa?
For family, relatives, and friends to visit you in the U.S., they will most likely need to apply for a tourist visa. The actual process may vary widely by region and country. For more information about the specifics of this process, please visit the Harvard International Office website. If your family members or friends require invitation letters for this process, please reach out directly to your Allston Burr Resident Dean.
13. Do family members under 5 years old need to pay for or need tickets to events?
For the Family Dinner, no ticket needed for those under 5 years old. For the Class Day picnic and Masters' Receptions, these are pre-bagged meals; if children will need their own lunches, they will need their own tickets. For Class Day/Commencement Exercises, children do not need tickets if they are able to sit on your lap.