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Commencement (Graduation) Ceremony

Ceremony Information

photo of graduates at commencement

Graduating Students

In order to attend the commencement ceremony, you must indicate that you are participating in your Graduation Application in WINGS Express. Learn more about applying to graduate and deadlines.

On this page:

Fall 2021 Ceremony Special Guidelines due to COVID-19

The following guidelines are being observed due to the COVID-19 guidelines set by the State of Ohio and the Wright State University COVID-19 Response Team. We will strictly adhere to these guidelines. We thank you for your cooperation and patience.


Doors will open 45-minutes before each ceremony.


There will be specific traffic flow and parking patterns around the Wright State Nutter Center for the Fall Semester ceremony.


Everyone must wear a mask, including all who are fully vaccinated.

To hold these ceremonies, we must comply with state and federal guidelines. Anyone entering the Wright State Nutter Center will be required to wear a face-covering at all times. Graduates or guests who remove their face coverings after being seated will be approached and asked to please comply. Anyone not wearing or unable to wear a face-covering will be asked to leave the facility and watch the ceremony by live stream.


Everyone must have a ticket to enter the Wright State Nutter Center. Tickets are specific for each ceremony and cannot be used for any ceremony, except the one specified on the ticket (there can be no exceptions).

  • Graduates will receive their one (1) ticket for entry and up to eight (8) family/guest tickets—See Tickets for hours/dates/place to pick up tickets.

Ceremony Proceedings


  • Enter at McLin entrance (graduates only) and park in Lot #9
  • Must have a ticket
  • Must wear a mask
  • Must have the appropriate robe/cap
  • Check-in at your college table in McLin Gym
    • After check-in, proceed to your college line-up area
  • Conferral of degrees
    • Your dean will announce the conferral of the degrees
    • You will proceed to the front of the arena.
      • You will be greeted by President Edwards and your dean
      • Masks must be worn. Please do not remove your mask, shake hands, or hug
  • Graduates will have no access to the guest seating area

Faculty/Staff/Board of Trustees

  • Faculty/Staff representing their college: Enter at Berry Room entrance
  • Must be registered to attend (link coming soon)
  • Have your ID ready
  • Must wear a mask
  • Proceed to McLin Gym for robing
    • Staff are encouraged, but not required, to robe but must sit in college seating as registered
  • After robing: please proceed to the faculty/staff line up area

Platform Party

  • Enter at the Berry Room entrance (near Lot #1)
  • Have ID ready
  • Must wear a mask
  • Proceed to Berry Room for robing
    • The script will be available at this time
  • Line-up in the Berry Room
    • Marshal will escort/guide you to the concourse for the procession into the arena and the Grand Marshal will lead you to the platform


  • Guests will have no access to the arena floor
  • Must have a ticket
  • Must enter at Gates #2, #3, and #4
  • When the ceremony ends, please proceed to the nearest door to exit the arena
  • All disability seating is at the top of the arena

Finding my family/graduate

  • Meeting your family/graduate will be outside and away from the building
    • Social distancing will be observed at all times
    • This will allow us to clean/sanitize and set up for the next ceremony

Academic Attire

Candidates for graduation are required to wear the appropriate academic attire (cap, gown, and hood, if applicable) to participate in the ceremony. The academic robe is different for each of the awards presented—undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate. The hoods or tassels represent the college, school, or major field in which the student is receiving the degree. Following are the color designations for each college, school, or discipline:

  • Graduate School, graduate-level – Black
  • Post-Graduate School, postgraduate level – Gold
  • Boonshoft School of Medicine – Green
  • School of Professional Psychology – Royal Blue
  • *College of Engineering and Computer Science – Orange or Yellow
  • *College of Science and Mathematics – Yellow
  • Raj Soin College of Business – Drab
  • College of Liberal Arts – White
  • College of Education and Human Services – Light Blue
  • College of Nursing and Health – Apricot

*NOTE: The proper color for all "Sciences" is Golden Yellow, with the exception of engineering students, for whom the proper color is Orange.

You should wear the color (and gown) of the highest level degree you are receiving. If they are of equal ranking (i.e. two bachelor's degrees), wear the color of the group with whom you are seated. You may not wear more than one tassel. 

Backpacks and Bags Policy

All backpacks are subject to search by security personnel upon entering the arena.
No backpacks are permitted on the arena floor. Graduates, please give all backpacks, satchels, purses, and any bag over 8 inches to family or friends to hold until commencement has ended. 

Broadcast Information

There are several options for watching our commencement ceremonies without physically being there, including online options.

Live Streaming

Wright State will provide a live stream of the ceremony as it occurs on Facebook and YouTube.

The Wright State Student Union will also have a viewing option on the Dayton campus.

Watch On-Demand

In addition to live streaming, you can watch the recorded video on our YouTube channel after the ceremony.

Caps and Gowns, Announcements, and Invitations

Caps/gowns will also be available in the bookstore up to the day before the Commencement Ceremony. The gowns are black with green trim for graduate students and green with gold trim for undergraduates. To ensure availability and correct fit, you are encouraged to purchase yours early. Please note: if you do not purchase your cap and gown from the Wright State University Bookstore, please be sure you obtain the correct color for your gown, tassel, and/or hood. If you are participating in the Dayton Campus ceremony and live near Lake Campus, please call the Wright State University Bookstore on the Dayton Campus to place your order.

Please contact the bookstore directly with questions at 937-775-5600 or go to wright.bncollege.com.

Ceremony Length

  • The December ceremony lasts approximately 90 minutes.
  • The May ceremony lasts approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes. 
  • Our 2021 ceremonies should last approximately 90 minutes.


We will have several concessions open during commencement.

Getting Your Diploma (Conferral of Degrees)

Since our commencement ceremonies immediately follow final exams, we are not able to certify the completion of graduation requirements prior to commencement. Therefore, Wright State does not distribute diplomas at its ceremonies.


Students graduating during the Fall and Spring Semesters will receive their diploma presentation folder during the commencement ceremony. Summer graduates will receive their diplomas in the mail. (Please note it may take 6–8 weeks to receive your diploma.)

Visit the RaiderConnect website to learn more about receiving your diploma.

Disability Accommodations

Graduates with Disabilities

Graduates requesting assistance who are participating in the Commencement Ceremony should contact the Office of Disability Services or call 937-775-5680.

Guests with Disabilities

Seating for guests with disabilities and up to two members of their party is available on the concourse level. All seating is first-come, first-served, and reservations are not accepted. For those requiring interpreter services in Section 204, please email graduation@wright.edu.

If you have questions please contact the Student Union Administrative Office at 937-775-5512 or event_services@wright.edu.

Wright State University's Nutter Center recognizes the needs of guests with disabilities as defined by the American Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. We continue to make every effort to comply with state and federal accessibility regulations and make reasonable accommodations for guests with disabilities.


Portions of Lots 1 and 2 are designated for our patrons with disabilities. In addition, extra disability spaces in the designated lots and surrounding lots for patrons with disabilities may be held for this event. To park in these areas, it is necessary to display an official state disability parking permit or disability license plate. To ensure you are able to get to the appropriate location, it is very important that you speak with the parking attendants and tell them you require disability parking. For special arrangements, please contact Wright State Nutter Center Event Services at 937-775-4743 or nutterguest@wright.edu.

Entry to the Arena

There are access ramps for our guests with disabilities directly in front of the Box Office (near Gate 4).


Wright State University's Nutter Center provides wheelchairs at Guest Services. You may also ask a Wright State Nutter Center staff member for wheelchair assistance. Reservations are not required.


Wright State University's Nutter Center provides handrails on each stairway between all arena seating sections.


Accessible restrooms are located throughout the concourse.


A commencement ceremony is a special event for all involved. It commemorates the completion of an educational goal by the graduate and allows family and friends to participate in a celebration of that completion. Please show respect for everyone who has come to share in the experience.

  • During the reading of graduate names, we ask graduates and their guests to be considerate in their applause so that all names are heard clearly and the ceremony is not disrupted. 
  • Please remain for the entire ceremony. 
  • Turn off or place your phone in silent mode to ensure that all guests may hear and enjoy the ceremony.
  • Graduates must see their faculty marshall to exit the arena floor

Graduating with Honors

Latin Honors

Undergraduate students with outstanding academic records are recognized at commencement. Latin Honors are based on the achievement of high grades. Three distinctions are noted:

For Students First Enrolled PRIOR to Fall 2006:

  • Summa Cum Laude indicates a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.8
  • Magna Cum Laude indicates a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.6
  • Cum Laude indicates a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.4

For Students First Enrolled DURING or POST Fall 2006:

  • Summa Cum Laude indicates a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.9
  • Magna Cum Laude indicates a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.7
  • Cum Laude indicates a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.5

Undergraduate students who have earned these distinctions wear white cords in recognition of their achievements and have their level of distinction noted by their name in the printed program. The above information applies to undergraduate students only. Graduate students are required to maintain a certain grade point average, and Latin Honors do not apply to them.

Latin Honor cords for the 2021 Fall Commencement will be available beginning Monday, November 8, in the Student Union Administrative Office (210 Student Union). Cords will also be available the day of commencement after check-in at the McLin Gym. Look for the sign on the northwest wall.`

Requirements to Attain Latin Honors

Latin Honors are based on meeting the minimum honors grade point average requirements for work attempted at Wright State University and for all college, work attempted as of the end of the term in which the student graduates (that is, by the day on which term grades are due). In calculating cumulative grade point averages for honors, only the first grade earned for a course will be counted. To be eligible for academic honors at graduation, students must have earned at least 30 semester hours at Wright State University. Please keep in mind that transfer credits from other colleges and universities are also used to calculate the grade point average in determining Latin Honors.

Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the printed program with respect to degrees awarded and honors conferred. The honors indicated in the program are based upon the student’s grade point average at the end of the semester preceding the semester of graduation. The appearance of a name in the list of degree candidates is not to be regarded as conclusive since some final grades are not submitted until after commencement. The student’s permanent academic record (transcript) is the official record.

university Honors Program

Students who have successfully completed one of the curricular tracks in the University Honors Program will receive an Honors medallion. Please contact honors@wright.edu for more information on the medallion. 

International Students

Obtaining a Letter of Invitation

International students who wish to invite members of their family to the graduation ceremony may request a "letter of invitation." Usually, this letter is used by the family to secure Visas for entry into the United States.

If you are an international student on a Visa, you should go to the University Center for International Education office to secure a letter of invitation for your family members. If you are not on a Visa and in the Graduate School please contact Erika Gilles at erika.gilles@wright.edu. If you are an undergraduate student, you should contact the dean's office for your college for a letter of invitation. In both cases, please be prepared to provide the full names of those to be invited, the familial relationship, and one embassy address for all names.  Multiple letters cannot be provided.  It is the responsibility of the recipient of the letter to process the invitation appropriately with the proper government officials. 


Graduation Foto will take pictures at Gate 2, before and after the ceremony. They will also take a photo as you receive your presentation folder (please do not remove your mask).

We would love a photo of YOU in your graduation apparel or Wright State gear! A montage of pictures received from our graduates will be prepared and shared on our website, social media, etc.

Seating Arrangements

Seating arrangements for the ceremonies are developed based upon the population of the ceremony participants, including the graduating students, faculty, and staff.


All graduates and their guests must have a ticket to enter the Nutter Center for all ceremonies. Tickets are given to graduates and their guests at no charge. Graduates can pick up their one (1) graduate ticket for their own entry into the arena and up to eight (8) general admission guest tickets. 

The location of ticket pick-up is the Nutter Center Box Office (located on the outside of the building between Gates 4 and 5), during the hours listed below.

All must present their photo ID when picking up tickets. Alternatively, someone other than the graduate may pick up the tickets; however, they must present both the student’s photo ID as well as their own photo ID.

All tickets are free but limited due to State of Ohio/University COVID-19 restrictions.

Ticket Pickup Dates and Times

Ticket pickup is available on the following dates, 10 a.m.—5 p.m.

  • November 17, 18, 19 (W, Th, Fr)
  • November 24 (W)
  • December 1, 2, 3 (W, Th, Fri)
  • December 8, 9, 10 (W, Th, Fri)

All Ticket Pickup

Tickets are not mailed. There are several options for ticket pick-up shown above.

Please have your ID ready. If you are picking up tickets for someone else, please have your ID as well as the graduate's ID or a legible copy of the graduate’s ID. Once we have reached building capacity, no more guest tickets will be dispersed.

Guests without tickets can watch commencement remotely in the Student Union or from anywhere on the live stream.

Graduating students please note: To attend the commencement ceremony, you must indicate in your Graduation Application in WINGS Express that you will be participating. Your status to walk at graduation can be updated and/or changed until Friday, November 5, 2021. After this date, any remaining tickets will be offered to our graduates from 2021, so that they may join us at our December 10 or 11 ceremonies on a first-come, first-served basis.

Lost Tickets

If you lose your tickets, duplicate tickets are not an option.