Before Commencement Week
Do we need to apply for graduation?
Yes, you need to apply for graduation through the Registrar’s Office’s Graduation Information page.
Where can we purchase our caps and gowns?
Caps and gowns are available for purchase now in the Ohio Wesleyan Campus Store, operated by Barnes & Noble College, on the lower level of Hamilton-Williams Campus Center. Students also may purchase the items April 16 at the Countdown to Commencement event.
Costs for the Class of 2024 have not been determined yet.
Costs for the Class of 2023 were:
- Bachelor’s Degree Bundle (Cap, gown, and tassel) – $64.98
- Single Cap – $14.98
- Single Tassel – $12.98
- Bachelor Gown – $40.98
- Honor cords will be distributed by the academic department bestowing the honor. Please check with the relevant academic assistant, department chair, or program director.
Parents are able to place orders for their students by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or telephone (740-368-3396) to be picked up on campus. The store will honor payments made over the phone via credit, debit, or Barnes & Noble gift card.
Gown sizing is determined by height and weight based on the chart below. Caps are one-size-fits-most.
Campus Store hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For students off-campus Spring semester, the store will hold orders for pick-up. The store will be open on Commencement day prior to and following the ceremony.
For questions, please contact email@example.com.
Where and when do we pick up our honor cords/stoles?
Each academic department will specify when and where to pick up honor cords/stoles. Personal stole options are available at Jostens.com.
Will we have a rehearsal?
A mandatory commencement rehearsal for the seniors walking in the ceremony will be held on Thursday, May 9, from 4 - 5:30 p.m., in Branch Rickey Arena. Check-in begins at 3:30 p.m. December graduates and others unable to attend rehearsal should contact Academic Affairs for instructions.
I’m graduating this semester but I don’t plan to walk. Do I need to go to rehearsal or the actual graduation ceremony?
No, you do not need to participate in the rehearsal or commencement activities if you do not intend to walk.
Can I participate in commencement if I incurred a balance on my bill during the semester?
Yes! Students who have a remaining balance can participate in commencement, but will not have their diplomas or final transcripts issued until the balance is addressed. Contact Student Accounts for more information.
How can we help to ensure our names are printed and pronounced correctly at commencement?
Verify or correct your diploma name by Friday, April 19, 2024. NOTE: THIS IS REQUIRED FOR ALL ANTICIPATED GRADUATES:
- Visit https://admin.owu.edu/cgi-bin/student/OWerpDiplomaName.cgi
- Log in and view your diploma name, and
- Use the change process if an adjustment is required. If no change is required, please DO NOT hit the Submit request button; select Cancel instead.
Proper pronunciation of your name is an important part of the ceremony and we need your help to be sure we get it right. Provide us with a pronunciation by Friday, April 19, 2024. NOTE: THIS IS REQUIRED FOR ALL ANTICIPATED GRADUATES:
To record the pronunciation and add the phonetic spelling of your name in Blackboard, follow the steps below:
- Log on to Blackboard.
- Click on your profile.
- Under Basic Information click Add Pronunciation.
- Add the phonetic spelling of your name by typing in the space provided “Pronunciation”.
- Record the pronunciation of your name by clicking on the record name pronunciation button.
- TIP: Make sure that you speak loudly when recording.
- TIP: The maximum record time is 20 seconds.
If you do not have access to Blackboard, follow the steps listed below to record the pronunciation of your name:
- Call 740-368-3205
- State your student ID number and your full name twice (as you would like it to be read at commencement), and
- Leave your phone number in case we require additional information.
If you miss the deadline, please contact the Registrar’s Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 740-368-3200 for assistance.
Which hotels/inns are recommended for guests?
Please visit the Delaware County Visitors Bureau website for full information about local amenities.
How should guests get to campus from the airport?
The University is unable to provide airport shuttles for commencement. Please visit our Area Transportation page to learn about area transportation options and access links to Columbus airport transportation.
How do we donate to the Senior Class Gift?
Visit owu.edu/SeniorGift and make a gift of $20.24 to receive a senior donor cord for commencement. With your senior class gift, you can support an area that’s meaningful to you (scholarships, your major, athletics teams, etc.) and continue the legacy of senior class philanthropy.
Are tickets required for Commencement ceremony guests?
If the event is held outdoors, there are no tickets or limits on the number of guests attending the ceremony. If the ceremony is moved indoors due to inclement weather, tickets are required.
In the event the ceremony must be moved indoors because of inclement weather, each graduate is provided four tickets for the indoor event. Tickets are available for pickup in the Academic Affairs Office in University Hall, Room 107, beginning April 22 until rehearsal on May 9. Students must pick up their tickets before rehearsal. The office is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
If the event is moved indoors and a student has more than four guests, a live-stream will be set up in the Benes Rooms inside Hamilton-Williams Campus Center for guests who do not have tickets. Again, this is only if the ceremony is impacted by weather. There is no limit on guests at the outdoor ceremony.
Note: If a student was unable to pick up indoor tickets prior to Commencement Day, they will be available at Will Call inside the Gordon Field House east garage door beginning at 11 a.m.
What about the weather?
We make every effort to host Commencement outside so that all guests may attend. Guests are encouraged to plan for the expected weather, using rain coats/ponchos rather than umbrellas so as to not block the view of other guests. Ponchos are provided to the graduates. The decision to move indoors is made Commencement Morning by 9 a.m. Announcements to move indoors are posted on social media and on the OWU website.
What is proper attire for commencement?
It is recommended that seniors dress in business casual or more formal attire. Caps and gowns are black, and there is no color restriction for outfits worn under the gown. Offensive T-shirts and other garments are not permitted. There is no restriction for shoes, but we encourage students to wear comfortable shoes for walking in the grass. (High heels are discouraged as they may sink into the ground.)
What time will commencement begin?
Commencement is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 13. Student line-up begins at 11:30 a.m. on the Labyrinth-Sulphur Spring walkway behind Phillips Hall (if indoors, in Branch Rickey Arena).
What do we need to bring to commencement?
Graduates need to bring their cap, gown, and tassel. (As well as honor cords/stoles for those who have them.) Beyond that, the less brought to the ceremony the better. If possible, have a family member hold purses or other bags. Cell phones and mobile devices need to be set on “silent.”
What should we NOT bring to commencement?
Please refrain from bringing pets, signs, umbrellas, and other items that may block the view of family and friends watching the ceremony. (Families may want to consider bringing rain ponchos if inclement weather is possible.) The use of bullhorns, air horns, and other disruptive devices also is prohibited. However, cheering and clapping for a graduate is encouraged! This is an important day, and we want everyone to have a fantastic experience!
Do we get our actual diplomas at commencement?
If you have fulfilled all academic and financial requirements, you will receive your diploma at commencement. If not, you will receive a diploma cover with an explanation of your remaining requirements inside.
If I do not plan to walk at graduation, where and when can I pick up my diploma?
If you do not plan to walk, please notify the Registrar’s Office promptly. You may pick up your diploma starting the Monday after commencement in the Registrar’s Office (M-F 8:30 a.m. to noon or 1-4:30 p.m.) or send an email request to email@example.com with your current address to have it mailed.
Will parents and family members be able to take videos and photographs? Are there professional photos for purchase?
Yes, parents and family members are welcome to take photographs from their seats or after the ceremony. Please do not advance to the stage or perimeter roping to take photographs. Professional photographer(s) will be on-site to take photos as students receive their diplomas and once they exit the stage. Please visit www.graduationfoto.com for more information.
What if we have accessibility needs for the Commencement ceremony?
Ohio Wesleyan University is committed to creating an accessible commencement experience for all who attend. For our guests with hearing impairment or who experience attention/concentration-related barriers, live captions of the Commencement ceremony will be viewable using any personal Internet-connected device (i.e., mobile phone, tablet, or laptop) accessible at owu.edu/commencement-captions.
Guests with mobility challenges should be registered by their student through an accessibility needs form that will be opened in April. Registered guests will be provided with a Special Access parking permit via email for the science center parking lot.
Is smoking allowed during commencement?
If the ceremony is outside, smoking is permitted only in the perimeter parking areas. Smoking is not allowed in the seating areas or inside buildings.
Will the Campus Store be open on the day of the commencement?
The Campus Store will be open on commencement day prior to and following the ceremony. For questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Will news releases about graduates be shared with hometown newspapers?
Yes, unless students have requested previously that the University not share news about them, announcements will be sent to hometown newspapers. Contact Cole Hatcher at email@example.com if you have questions.
A live-stream will be set up in the Benes Rooms inside Hamilton-Williams Campus Center for guests unable to sit in the outdoor guest gallery or for guests without indoor tickets, and you can also view the live-stream’s Stream OWU page.