Frequently Asked Questions

What's the difference between the Engineering ceremonies and the University ceremony on Monday?

Students attending the Engineering ceremony for their degree will walk across the stage, receive a “diploma” (note:  diplomas will be mailed separately), and pose for a photo with Dean Kumar. Students attending the University ceremony on Monday will not walk across the stage, and will join all graduates from across Penn.

How do I participate in the University's 263rd Commencement on Monday, May 20?

Please visit the University’s Commencement website:  commencement.upenn.edu. Line-up locations for all graduates wishing to participate may be found in the Commencement Brochure, available for download at the bottom of the main Commencement website.

How do I get ceremony tickets for my guests?

No tickets are issued for Engineering Commencement ceremonies. There is no limit to the number of guests a student may bring.

Do participating students need to register for Engineering Commencement?

Yes. Registration is required for participation in Commencement. Master’s and undergraduate level students must register via Marching Order before the indicated deadline; you will receive an email from Marching Order inviting you to register in early-mid April. Ph.D. level students wishing to be hooded must register via the Ph.D. registration form, which will be sent via email from Research and Academic Services (RAS) in early-mid March.

For questions regarding registration, please contact the following individuals as appropriate:

Undergraduate:  Cindi Buoni (buoni@seas.upenn.edu)

Graduate (Master’s and Ph.D.):  Alyse Edwards (aedwards@seas.upenn.edu) and Tori Frew (vfrew@seas.upenn.edu)

How do I get my diploma?

Diplomas are mailed from the Office of the Secretary and mailed to the graduate’s address indicated during Commencement registration. Further information on diplomas can be found here.

How can my friends and family participate remotely?

Penn Engineering Commencement ceremonies will be live-streamed from the main Commencement website (seas.upenn.edu/commencement). Be sure to tag your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter posts with #PennEngGrad!

What happens if it rains?

All ceremonies will be held in their respective locations regardless of weather events.

Undergraduate FAQs

What time is the undergraduate ceremony? Where is it?

Penn Engineering’s Undergraduate Commencement ceremony will begin at 2:00 pm in the Palestra on Saturday, May 18. The Palestra is noted on the below map. Students should report to the Tse Cheng Sports Center entrance at 1:00. Doors open for general guest seating at 1:30 p.m.

What is the undergraduate luncheon?

A celebratory luncheon for all graduates and their guests will take place in the Engineering complex before the ceremony, from 12:00- 1:30 p.m. Dietary restrictions (including kosher, gluten free, vegan, and vegetarian) will be accommodated. All guests are welcome; there is not limit to the number of guests who may attend. Lunches are divided into six reception locations. A printed invitation (with location details) will be mailed to the graduate’s permanent address on file. Lunch locations are divided by major/department.

Where is my department's lunch location?

Bioengineering (BE):  Skirkanich Lobby

Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering (CBE):  Towne, 3rd Floor

Computer Information Science (CIS):  Lunch distribution in tent on west Towne Lawn; seating throughout Levine Hall

Electrical and Systems Engineering (ESE):  Lunch distribution in tent on west Towne Lawn; seating in Towne, 1st Floor

Materials Science and Engineering (MSE):  Singh Center Lobby

Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics (MEAM):  Towne, 2nd Floor

How do I get my cap and gown? Do I have to wear one?

All students who wish to participate in Commencement must wear academic regalia, with the exception of some military personnel, who may choose to wear their dress uniforms. The Penn Bookstore provides all graduating students’ academic regalia for purchase. Undergraduate students may purchase their regalia by completing a purchase form in-person at the Bookstore; you may then pick up your regalia immediately upon payment.

If you have any questions about ordering your garb, you should contact the bookstore directly by calling 215-898-7595 or emailing capandgown@upenn.edu.

If purchasing garb poses a financial burden, please contact Katharine Miller in the Dean’s Office (ekmiller@seas.upenn.edu).

Where do I line up for the undergraduate ceremony? What do I need to bring?

Undergraduate students should report to the Tse Cheng Sports Center (noted with a red star below) at 1:00 p.m. Please have your Penn Card with you.

How do I register my guests who need accessible seating? Can other family members sit with a guest who requires accessible seating?

Guests requiring accessibility seating do not need to register. ADA seating opens at 1:00 pm, 30 minutes before doors open for general seating. Please come to the NW entrance (marked with a red dot on below map) for seating instructions and assistance. We recommend that any guests requiring accessible seating arrive before 1:30.

All guests accompanying an ADA guest will be seated in the ADA section, though they may not be able to sit directly beside someone in a wheelchair. Guests requiring accessible seating at Monday’s Commencement ceremony must register online. For details and to register, please visit commencement.upenn.edu. 

Master's FAQs

What time is the Engineering Master's ceremony? Where is it?

The Engineering Master’s Commencement ceremony is Friday, May 17, from 3:30- 5:30 p.m. in the Palestra. The Palestra is noted on the map below.

What is the Master's Open House & Reception?

A celebratory reception for all graduates and their guests will take place in the Engineering complex before the ceremony from 1:00- 3:00 p.m. Dietary restrictions (including kosher, gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian) will be accommodated. All guests are welcome— there is no limit to the number of guests who may attend. Degree programs are divided into six reception locations. A printed invitation (with location details) will be mailed directly to the graduates. 

Where is my department's reception located?

Bioengineering (BE): Skirkanich Lobby
Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering (CBE): Towne, 3rd Floor
BIOT: Towne, 3rd Floor
Computer Information Science (CIS), including CGGT, CIT, Data Science, Embedded Systems, SCM, & Robotics: Distribution in tent on West Towne Lawn; seating throughout Levine
Electric and Systems Engineering (ESE): Distribution in tent on West Towne Lawn; seating in Towne, 1st Floor
Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) and NANO: Singh Center, 1st Floor Lobby
Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics (MEAM) and IPD: Towne, 2nd Floor

How do I get my cap and gown? Do I have to wear one?

All students who wish to participate in Commencement must wear academic regalia, with the exception of military personnel, who may wear their dress uniforms. The Penn Bookstore provides all graduating students’ academic regalia for purchase. Master’s students may purchase their regalia by completing a purchase form in-person at the Bookstore; you may then pick up your regalia immediately upon payment.

If you have any questions about ordering your garb, you should contact the bookstore directly by calling 215-898-7595 or emailing capandgown@upenn.edu.

If purchasing garb poses a financial burden, please contact Katharine Miller in the Dean’s Office (ekmiller@seas.upenn.edu).

Where do I line up for the Master's ceremony? Do I need to bring anything?

Master’s students should report to the Tse Cheng Sports Center (noted with a red star on the below map) at 2:30 p.m. Please have your Penn Card with you.

How do I register my guests who need accessible seating? Can other family members sit with a guest who requires accessible seating?

Guests requiring accessibility seating do not need to register. ADA seating opens at 2:00 pm, 30 minutes before doors open for general seating. Please come to the NW entrance (marked with a red dot on below map) for seating instructions and assistance. We recommend that any guests requiring accessible seating arrive before 2:30.

All guests accompanying an ADA guest will be seated in the ADA section, though they may not be able to sit directly beside someone in a wheelchair. Guests requiring accessible seating at Monday’s Commencement ceremony must register online. For details and to register, please visit commencement.upenn.edu.

Ph.D. FAQs

What time is the Ph.D. Commencement ceremony? Where is it?

The Engineering Ph.D. ceremony is on Thursday, May 16, from 3:30- 4:30 p.m. in Irvine Auditorium. Irvine Auditorium is located on the northwest corner of 34th Streets and Spruce Streets.

When and where is the Ph.D. reception?

A celebratory reception for all Ph.D. graduates and their guests will take place in Houston Hall, Hall of Flags from 4:30- 6:00 p.m., immediately following the ceremony. Houston Hall is located immediately beside Irvine Auditorium. All guests are welcome. There is no limit to the number of guests who may attend.

How do I purchase/rent my regalia?

Doctoral candidates may choose to rent or purchase their regalia. Students may complete a rental or purchase form in-person at the Bookstore or by calling 215-898-7595.

Regalia rentals may be picked up on the second floor of the Bookstore between Wednesday, May 8 and Monday, May 20. All rentals must be returned before 12pm on Tuesday, May 21. 

Where do I line up for the Ph.D. ceremony?

Ph.D. students should report to Irvine Auditorium at 2:30 p.m. for registration and line-up. Please remember to bring your hood!

How do I register my guests who need accessibility seating? Can other family members sit with the guest who requires accessible seating?

Guests requiring accessibility seating do not need to register. There is no early access available at Irvine Auditorium. All family members may sit with the guest requiring accessible seating. Guests requiring accessible seating at Monday’s Commencement ceremony must register online. For details and to register, please visit commencement.upenn.edu.