Commencement is such an important occasion for graduates and families that the College strives to accommodate as many of your guests as possible. Marist College’s traditional undergraduate Commencement ceremony is held outdoors, rain or shine, on the Campus Green. There is no indoor facility either on campus or in the Mid-Hudson Valley that can hold the approximately 12,000 graduates and guests who attend this event each year. 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.
Announcements will be circulated to all local radio stations and made on the Marist website and the Marist weather hotline, (845) 575-5500. Please check these sources before traveling to campus.
In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony may be delayed up to three hours if clearing is anticipated within a reasonable period. Families are encouraged to consider this possibility when making post-Commencement travel and celebration plans. Announcement of a delayed ceremony will be made as early as possible on Commencement day and made on the Marist website and the Marist weather hotline, (845) 575-5500. Please check these sources before traveling to campus.
Severe Weather Contingency Plan
If hazardous weather conditions prevent us from holding the ceremony outside, the ceremony will be divided into morning and afternoon ceremonies and moved inside the McCann Center. Both ceremonies will be abbreviated, and students will be assigned to one or the other according to their school. This is not a rain plan, but rather a plan for dangerous weather only. Announcements will be made by 6 a.m. on the Marist website and the Marist weather hotline, (845) 575-5500. Families are encouraged to consider the possibility of an afternoon ceremony when making post-Commencement travel and celebration plans.
Indoor seating in the McCann arena is extremely limited and will be available by ticket only. Each graduate can receive up to three (3) severe weather tickets, which will be available with line-up card distribution. It is the graduate’s responsibility to distribute these tickets to his or her guests prior to the ceremony. Only severe weather ticket holders will be permitted into the McCann Center.
In case of an indoor ceremony, disabled parking will be in the McCann lot and available only for vehicles with handicapped permits. Disabled seating will be available in McCann for severe weather ticket-holders who prearranged disabled seating. All other guests will be directed to live-broadcast locations located throughout campus, all of which are handicap accessible.
As with outdoor exercises, Marist will have the ceremony professionally videotaped and have professional photographers on hand to capture graduates as they receive their diploma covers.