FAQ's for Traditional Undergraduate Students

Saturday, May 24, 2014

How do I participate in Commencement?
By now, all candidates should have filled out an Application for Graduation form in the Registrar's office or downloaded the form from the Commencement web site. If you have not done so, please stop by the Registrar's office by March 21.  The information provided on the form will be used to order your diploma and for the Commencement program.

When and where is Commencement?
Commencement will take place on the Campus Green on Saturday, May 24, at 11:00 a.m.  The graduates will begin lining up at 9:15 a.m. on the Lowell Thomas Quad between Hancock Center and Dyson Center and the procession will begin promptly at 10:30 a.m.

Who will correctly pronounce my name?
Marist wants to make sure each name called on Commencement day is pronounced correctly. For this reason, names are all pre-recorded by the Dean of each School. Students may record their own names ahead of time so that Deans may use those recordings as a reference.   To record your name, log in to iLearn and under your Sites, you will find a course named Commencement Name Recording.  Follow the directions described in the assignment.  You will need a computer with a built-in microphone.  If you don’t have one of your own, stop by the Help Desk in Donnelly  Hall or the Media Center in LT 203 for assistance.  Act soon! The course will close April 21.

Do you know who the speaker will be?
This announcement is usually made in mid-April. 

How long does the ceremony last?
The ceremony is expected to last approximately two hours.  Following the ceremony you are invited to join fellow graduates and their families at a reception under the tent on the St. Peter's Meadow.

How do I obtain graduation announcements?
Orders for personalized announcements can be placed online at www.herffjones.com/college/graduation.

How do I order my cap and gown?
Regalia is ordered using our web application at www.marist.edu/registrar/commencement/.  We begin accepting orders on February 4, 2014, and will continue until March 21, 2014.  A Marist Computer Account Access code and password are required. 

When do I pick up my cap and gown?
Regalia may be picked up as follows: Saturday ceremony: After rehearsal on Friday, May 23, 2014, until 3:30 p.m. or before the ceremony on Saturday, May 24, no earlier than 8:00 a.m.          

Gowns, and hoods are rented by the College for all graduates at no cost to the student. The gowns and hoods must be returned to the cap and gown room in Donnelly Hall by 3:00 p.m., or the student's account will be charged for replacement of the rental unit ($400 - $700). If students are interested in purchasing hoods or any part of the regalia please see below.

Do students get to keep the cap, gown, and hood?
You may keep the cap.  However, the gown and hood (regalia) are rented by the College for the student at no cost to the student.  The gown and hood must be returned to the College immediately after the ceremony so that it may be sent back to the rental company.  Students are encouraged to keep the commemorative tassel.  The tassel is included in the packet of regalia. This item is purchased for the student by the College and, again, there is no cost to the student.         

May students purchase the gown and/or hood?
Regalia may be purchased directly from Herff-Jones, the regalia supply company.  Marist does not act as an intermediary for this transaction. The local Herff-Jones representative may be contacted at:

Collegiate of North Jersey, LLC
32 Mill Pond Road
W. Paterson, N.J.    07424
(973) 256-0660

What is a line-up card and why do I need it?
It is imperative that all graduates have a line-up card for cap and gown pick-up and for the Commencement ceremony itself.  Students must sign the alcohol policy statement in order to receive a line-up card. The Registrar's office should be contacted immediately if the line-up card is lost.

Where do I pick up my line-up card?
Line-up cards will be available on Thursday, May 22, from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. in Donnelly Hall.  Please note that a photo ID is required to obtain the line-up card.

Is there an alcohol policy?
Alcohol is not permitted before or during the Commencement exercises and will be confiscated if brought to the ceremony.  Please advise all guests of this policy.  Graduates participating in the Commencement ceremony will be required to sign a statement to acknowledge that they understand the College's alcohol policy.  These statements will be available on Thursday, May 22, between the hours of 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. (during line-up card distribution).

Is there a rehearsal?
All graduates are required to attend a mandatory rehearsal on Friday, May 23, at 11:30 a.m.  Students will convene on the Lowell Thomas Quad between Hancock Center and Dyson Center in the area designated for their School.  School banners will be prominently displayed.  Line-up cards are needed for rehearsal, which is expected to last approximately one hour.

What time do I line up on Commencement day?  What time does the procession begin?
Students will assemble for the procession at 9:15 a.m. on the Lowell Thomas Quad between Hancock Center and Dyson Center.  Students will need their line-up cards to participate in the ceremony.  The procession is scheduled to begin promptly at 10:30 a.m. Candidates and faculty will march together, led by their marshal, and be seated by School.  Graduates will be called to receive their diplomas in alphabetical order by School.  Line-up cards will be collected from students just before they approach the platform to receive their diploma covers.

How should I dress?
Students should be cautious of the clothes they wear underneath their gowns.  Neither the College nor the manufacturer of the caps and gowns guarantees that they are colorfast.  Weather conditions have varied from picture perfect to extreme rain or heat.  Graduates are advised to dress comfortably and be prepared for the weather.  If it is raining you may want to bring umbrellas.  Bring sunblock and sunglasses for sunny conditions.  Wear shoes appropriate for grassy areas. 

When should my guests plan on arriving?
Family and guests are encouraged to arrive early to better ensure a parking space and seating.  However, no guests will be permitted to enter the actual ceremony site before 8:30 a.m. Guests should be in their seats no later than 10:30 a.m. 

Are tickets required and is there a limit to how many guests I can invite?
Tickets are NOT required for the outdoor ceremony.  Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.  Students are asked to limit their party to six guests out of consideration for their fellow graduates.  No saving of seats will be allowed.  

I have a guest who is disabled.  Is there special seating?
The College has made arrangements to have the ceremony interpreted in sign for the hearing impaired.  There will be a designated seating section to accommodate disabled guests.  Students may request disabled seating tickets and parking permits in the Registrar's office starting May 7.  A limit of one disabled parking permit and two disabled seating tickets per graduate will be issued.  As guests enter the campus, please be prepared to show your disabled parking permit to the security guard, who will direct you to the appropriate parking area.  Lots are reserved for vehicles with handicapped license plates, handicapped parking placards issued by a municipality, or special parking permits issued by the College Registrar.  Guests with handicapped permits should enter at the north entrance. There is no access to the handicapped parking areas from the south entrance.

What if it rains?
Unless weather conditions are severe, Commencement will take place rain or shine on the Campus Green.  In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony may be delayed from its scheduled start if clearing is anticipated within a reasonable period.  Announcement of a delayed ceremony will be made on campus prior to 10:30 a.m. Commencement morning. Only in the rare event of extreme weather such as dangerous lightning or tornado- or hurricane-like conditions will the College implement a Severe Weather Contingency Plan and move to smaller ceremonies held indoors.  Please check www.marist.edu for updates or call the severe weather hotline (845) 575-5500. 

Will a DVD of the Commencement ceremony be available?
We are pleased to announce that Marist College's 68th Commencement will be available on DVD.  This edited program will feature both undergraduate and graduate Commencement ceremonies, including the academic procession, candid shots of graduates, and more.  It may or may not include shots of individual students receiving their diploma covers.  To order, please send a check or money order for $30.00 to the Marist College Media Center, 3399 North Road, LT 203, Poughkeepsie, New York, 12601 along with your name, address, and graduate's name.  Please allow six weeks for delivery.  Any questions can be directed to (845) 575-3635.  

What if my guests need overnight accommodations?
For those students whose guests will need overnight accommodations, a list of local hotels/bed and breakfasts/motels, as well as an area restaurant listing, is available on our Commencement web site at www.marist.edu/registrar/commencement 

Where do I meet my parents after Commencement?
We suggest that you prearrange a meeting place with your parents at the conclusion of the full recessional.

When do graduates have to be out of their rooms?
All residence halls will close at 5:00 p.m. Commencement day, Saturday, May 24.

Are there additional campus weekend activities?
Various campus organizations conduct special celebrations with students, families and friends. Students will receive separate invitations, with reservations required, for these events.

What about Senior Week activities?
At the end of March you will receive in your mailbox the 2014 Senior Week Schedule outlining all the activities planned by the Senior Week Committee under the direction of Student Activities. 

When do I receive my diploma?
Diplomas will be mailed by June 23 to all who have met graduation requirements.  Graduates must be clear of all financial obligations, including loan exit interviews and library fees, before their diploma will be mailed.  Questions about financial obligations should be directed to the Office of Student Financial Services (845) 575-3230. 

What are the bookstore hours on Commencement day?
For your convenience the bookstore will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 24.  Diploma frames are available at the bookstore for purchase.

Is there a yearbook I can purchase?
No.  The yearbook is decided by the class each year and this year one is not being done.

How do I purchase a class ring?
Questions or information regarding class rings should be directed to Balfour at  www.Balfour.com  Please contact Sales Operations Services Dave Handal at 1-(866) 225-3687 or (512) 440-2748.

 Helpful Hints 

  • Before you graduate, your tassel should be worn on the right; when you graduate, move it to the left.
  • The weather can be unpredictable, so remember both your umbrella and your sunblock.
  • Remember, the grass can be wet even if it isn't raining, so consider your footwear carefully.
  • All graduates and guests must turn off cell phones. Please be considerate of others.
  • The Commencement ceremony will last approximately two hours. We encourage you to participate in the entire ceremony. Out of respect for your fellow graduates, please remain seated throughout the entire ceremony.
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