Skip to main content

more options

PhD Hooding Ceremony

Event Schedule | How to Participate | Arrival Time for Candidates
Cap & Gown | RSVP | Tickets | Photographs | Diplomas
Mobility-Impaired Guests | Parking | Campus Buses
Faculty Invitations | Commencement Packet | Commencement

A special ceremony will be held in Barton Hall on Saturday for all PhD candidates to be individually recognized and hooded on stage as a welcome into the academy of scholars. PhD candidates and their families, friends, and faculty members are invited to attend. A reception with light refreshments will immediately follow the ceremony.

Event Schedule

Saturday, May 27, 2017
Barton Hall
5:00-6:00pm Ceremony
6:00-6:30pm Reception

Arrival Times
Families: 4:15 doors open
PhD Degree Candidates: 4:15-4:30
Faculty: 4:30-4:40 to participate
Volunteers: 3:00 sign in for usher meeting

How to Participate

PhD candidates are eligible to walk in the ceremony whether their degree is finalized before the ceremony date or after. To participate:

Cornell PhD Regalia

Cap and Gown

Doctoral regalia must be worn by PhD degree candidates, and may be rented or purchased.
Rent by April 15: price & link to order
Purchase (optional): Herff Jones website


An RSVP is required by May 24 by PhD candidates planning to participate in the Hooding Ceremony.

(The link to RSVP will be posted here in the spring.)

Commencement Packet

PhD candidates should obtain a PhD Commencement Packet from 143 Caldwell Hall, per instructions on the Graduate School's website. The packet contains a letter from the Dean of the Graduate School, faculty invitation cards for the PhD Hooding Ceremony, and important information for the University Commencement Ceremony.

Arrival Time for PhD Candidates

Arrive at Barton Hall at 4:15-4:30pm.

Wear cap & gown, but carry the hood.

Report to alphabetic tables along the red curtain to receive a name card for your name and field of study to be read during the ceremony. Carefully proofread all information on the card and make changes, if necessary. Ushers and Graduate School staff will be there to distribute name cards, assist with regalia, provide instructions for carrying the hood, and lining up candidates for the procession. Please arrive 4:15-4:30 to ensure enough time to have everything ready and be in place by 4:45 to participate in the procession.

The ceremonial program begins promptly at 5:00 as music begins and the University Marshal leads the formal procession of candidates, faculty, trustees, deans, provost, and president.

Tickets and Number of Guests

There are no tickets for this event, and there is no limit to the number of guests who may attend.


Professional photographs will be taken of you on stage. You will receive an email from Grad Images within two weeks following the ceremony, offering an option to purchase photographs. For photo questions, please contact Grad Images at 800-261-2576 or

Faculty Invitation

PhD candidates are encouraged to invite special committee faculty members to this event. Two formal faculty invitations are provided in the PhD Commencement Packet to give to faculty members, but an invitation is not required for them to attend. Your invited faculty will not be hooding you, but may participate by walking in the formal procession wearing academic regalia (faculty may borrow at no cost) and be seated in the faculty area located in front of the stage. Faculty planning to attend as a guest, not walk in the procession, may sit in guest seating areas and do not need to wear regalia. All faculty are welcome to enjoy the reception immediately following the ceremony. See below for parking information.


During this event time on Saturday, campus roads around Barton Hall are open and special permits are not needed for general parking. Guests and faculty may park in available spaces near Barton Hall as well as in Hoy Parking Garage. See instructions below for mobility-impaired guests.

Mobility-Impaired Guests

Guests who cannot maneuver stairs should enter Barton Hall from the Garden Avenue side, not from the Statler Hotel side. Drivers may drop off and pick up passengers at the Garden Avenue entrance doors to Barton Hall, where staff are there to assist. Guests using wheelchairs and walkers will be accommodated in the floor seating areas.

Campus Buses

Campus buses will be available on Saturday and Sunday from bus stops on central campus.

University Commencement Ceremony

On Sunday, May 28, PhD candidates are expected to participate in the university-wide Commencement Ceremony. At 9:15am PhD candidates will gather on the Arts Quad wearing cap, gown, and hood, to walk in the procession to Schoellkopf Stadium along with other degree groups. Following the ceremony in Schoellkopf, college ceremonies and receptions are held for graduates and their families at various college locations. Check with your field for specific details.


Diplomas are mailed, not distributed at the PhD Hooding Ceremony or University Commencement.

Contact Information

Commencement Office
B13 Day Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
(607) 255-9541
Contact Us