For the Graduate


Commencement exercises are Friday, May 15, 2020, at 5:30 p.m. in Jarman Hall. 

Before the Ceremony

Graduation Requirements

If you have questions or concerns about your Graduation Requirements and/or the Graduate Checklist contact the Registrar's Office in Brock Hall, (434)395-2580.

Accessibility Needs 

These accommodations are available for the Undergraduate ceremony:

  • Accessible Parking
  • Accessible Seating
  • Interpreting Services    

Visit the Commencement Accessibility page for information.


If you believe your name is hard to pronounce please contact Kathy Charleston,, Assistant Dean of the College of Graduate & Professional Studies or call 395-2255.

Please leave the following information when you leave a message:

  • Your degree - Masters of Science
  • Your name (two times) - Shiletia Garavito...Shiletia Garavito

Professional Photography

During Commencement, professional photographers from Grad Images take pictures of each graduate during the ceremony. 

Graduates and their families are invited to pre-register their contact information prior to Commencement.

Proofs will be available within 3 days after graduation at

Announcements, Invitations and Class Rings

Order online from the Balfour Website


Graduates do not rehearse. 

Graduates that are part of the platform party will rehearse.  

The Ceremony


All Masters degree candidates report to Blackwell Hall Foyer at 4:45 p.m. with academic regalia

Blackwell Hall Foyer is located directly behind the Rotunda in Ruffner Hall. Staff and junior marshals will be present to assist you with lining up by college and concentration.



Graduation is a formal academic ceremony and a special day for the graduates and their guests. Please respect this occasion and all who worked so hard to get here by remaining seated and quiet during the ceremony.

Also, we ask that you please show respect for your fellow students and plan to stay for the entire ceremony.

Prohibited Items:

  • Alchohol 
  • Air horns
  • Beach balls
  • Bubbles
  • Other Distractions

Cell Phones and Mobile Devices

All cell phones and mobile devices should be turned to silent. 


All degree and professional endorsement candidates must wear appropriate attire for the Commencement ceremony, which includes an academic cap and gown, hood and dark shoes.  Members of the Alumni Office will be there to assist you with your Gown, Hood and Mortarboard.


Your gown is worn with the zipper in front.

Wear dark shoes with dark trousers or a skirt no longer than your gown.


Graduate students will have their hood placed on them during the ceremony. You will carry the hood into the ceremony draped over your left arm. When your name is called, the respective Deans will complete the hooding process as you walk across the stage.

The hood is worn with the velvet stripe showing in the front, draping over the shoulders to your back, and rolling over to expose the colors.

Safety pins will help secure your hood to your gown.

Don't wear bright colors on top that will detract from your hood.

The color of velvet hood stripe by degree:

  • Master of Business Administration - Drab 
  • Master of Education - Light Blue 
  • Master of Science - Goldenrod


The mortarboard should be worn so that the point marked "Front of Cap" is down on your forehead. This allows the mortarboard to sit flat on the top of your head

Bobby pins will help secure the mortarboard to your head.

Do NOT decorate the mortarboard as it will inhibit placing the hood over your head and mortarboard during the ceremony.

Tassel - Masters

The tassel is worn on the left and should not be turned during the ceremony.


MAY 2020 GRADUATES - Longwood is changing your diploma size to 11" wide by 14" length

If you are a May 2020 graduate and have already purchased the larger frame from the Barnes & Noble Longwood Bookstore, you may exchange the frame for an 11x14 frame.  Please contact the Longwood Bookstore at 434-391-3355. Diplomas are mailed to the address you provide approximately 4-6 weeks after your graduation date.

Diploma Frames

Diploma frames may be ordered from the Longwood Bookstore website.

There are three (3) frames to select from for the May 2020 diplomas. The description will indicate: "For 2020 graduates and later. Approximate size 19x22." These are the frames that fit the 2020 11x14 diplomas:


Invited Guests

Tickets are not needed. There is no limit on the number of guests each graduate may invite. Overflow seating with live streaming will be available in Jeffers Auditorium.


Only registered service animals are permitted. With the number of visitors on campus, we do not allow pets.

Graduates Reception

A reception for masters degree graduates and their commencement guests will be sponsored by the Graduate Student Association. The reception will immediately follow the ceremony on the front lawn of Jarman.

Longwood uses the GreenWeaver line of regalia -- graduation caps and gowns made of 100% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles.