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Winter 2009 Commencement Overview

Wednesday, December 23, 2009, at 10 a.m.
in the Retriever Activities Center

(Procession begins promptly at 9:40 a.m.)

Frequently Asked Questions
For More Information

Information for Candidates

Information for Faculty, Staff and Administration

Information for Candidates' Families and Other Guests

UMBC's 2009 Winter Undergraduate Commencement will be held Wednesday, December 23, at 10 a.m., in the Retriever Activities Center (RAC) Arena (building 3 on the map). Commencement procession begins promptly at 9:40 a.m. In observance of the National Anthem, guests will not be seated while the anthem is performed. When the doors reopen following the singing of the National Anthem, guests will be seated as space permits. 

Because seating in the RAC is limited and the number of undergraduate students choosing a December graduation has increased each year, the University will continue to provide undergraduate students with tickets for their graduation guests. Tickets will allow their families and friends to have a more comfortable experience during the ceremony.

When undergraduate students pick up their regalia from the Bookstore Graduation Center, they will receive FOUR tickets admitting their guests to the ceremony in the RAC. Also, at this time, undergraduates will receive their floor pass, which is required to participate in the ceremony.

For guests with special needs, such as hearing or mobility impairments, students may exchange general admission tickets for special accommodations seats at the time students pick up their regalia. Up to two tickets may be exchanged.

All graduates participating in the Commencement ceremony MUST wear the academic regalia that can only be ordered from the UMBC Bookstore Graduation Center. Candidates are prohibited from wearing a borrowed cap or gown from an alumnus/a or another student. NO EXCEPTIONS.

The dates for ordering regalia at the Bookstore Graduation Center are Monday, October 5, and Tuesday, October 6, 11 a.m. - 6 p.m., and Wednesday, October 7, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Regalia can also be purchased online through Friday, October 16. The cost of undergraduate regalia is $44.99. Beginning October 9, candidates who order regalia will be assessed a $20 late fee. All forms of payment usually accepted in the Bookstore are allowed.

The Bookstore will not be responsible for regalia or tickets unclaimed by Monday, December 14, the last day of classes.

In addition to the ticketed seating in the RAC Arena, overflow seating will be available in Lecture Hall III of the Administration building, with a closed-circuit broadcast of the Commencement ceremony. Tickets will not be required at this location. When undergraduate students pick up their regalia and tickets at the Bookstore, they will be asked to indicate the number of additional guests (if any) who may need seating in this area. This information will be used to plan for seating.


How many tickets will I receive?
How long does the ceremony usually last?
Where and what time should I arrive?
Do I need to wear a cap and gown?
Is there a graduation rehearsal?
Where should I have my guests park?
How do I request special seating for a guest in a wheelchair or with other special needs?
Is there a snow date?
When do I receive my diploma?
How do I join the Alumni Association?


If you have specific questions regarding the Undergraduate Commencement ceremony, contact Laura Arnwine in the Office of Institutional Advancement at 410-455-5897 or

Office of the Registrar: 410-455-3158 or
Bookstore: 410-455-3807 or


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