Seating begins for guests one hour before each ceremony. Guests are asked to be in their seats 10 minutes before the ceremony begins to clear the aisles to prepare for the academic procession (graduates and faculty marching in). Seating will resume after the processional, national anthem and invocation (approximately 30 minutes). Late-arriving guests will be seated immediately following the invocation.
To Be Announced
- Order and try on your Regalia (cap & gown).
- Complete the Gradate Participation form (on Qualtrics) and submit a photo in full Regalia. Photo specifications will be provided via e-mail and on the form.
- Attend your college specific Commencement presentation (watch for an e-mail).
- Watch your e-mail for more information and COVID-19 requirements and updates.
- Bring your Regalia (gown, tam/cap, hood & tassel) to the ceremony. Unfortunately, we do not have extra items.
- GRADUATES RUNNING LATE TO THE CEREMONY
Please remember that commencement is mandatory for all graduates! If you are afraid you’re going to miss the start of the ceremony, take a deep breath, then call or text the emergency number and leave your name, program and what we can expect. Emergency phone number for graduates. Please note, this phone is only monitored on the day of the ceremony.
General Admission Tickets
- Each graduate is guaranteed the number of guests indicated below. If you have additional guests, please contact OSA at email@example.com
- COMP-Northwest in Lebanon, Oregon
- Two (2) Family Hooder Passes + Eight (8) General Admission Tickets for a total of Ten (10)
Family Hooder Passes
- Two family hooder passes will be issued to each graduate, and will provide access to the family hooder seating area.
- For safety and liability purposes, Family Hooders must be at least 12 years of age.
- Family Hooders between 12-18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult, and the adult will count as one of the Family Hooders. No exceptions will be granted.
- Family Hooder passes will be distributed in early May.
What is Family Hooding
Western University of Health Sciences proudly offers our graduates the opportunity to have two adult family members/friends join them on stage to bestow them with the academic hood signifying their degree. At that special moment, you, the family hooder, will be honoring your graduate for their years of hard work. At the same time, by your presence on stage, you will be recognized for the contributions you’ve made along the way. It will truly be a moment of honor.
FAMILY HOODING CHECK-IN
- Family Hooder Check-In is at the Commencement Tent between 8:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Please show your Family Hooder pass to the Commencement Assistants at the Check- In area for access to Family Hooder Reserved Seating.
- Only two family hooders will be permitted on stage.
- Please leave personal belongings with a family member; you will not be able to take your purse or camera on stage with you.
- For safety and liability purposes, Family Hooders must be at least 12 years of age. Family Hooders between 12-17 years of age must be accompanied by an adult chaperone. The adult will count as one of the Family Hooders. No exceptions will be granted.
DURING THE CEREMONY
- It is important that you sit in the section indicated on your family hooder pass so we will be able to direct you to the stage at the appropriate time.
- Commencement assistants will guide you to the stage.
- You will be directed onto the stage just prior to the calling of your graduate’s name.
- Your graduate will hand you the hood, you will then place it on your graduate’s shoulders.
- Should a family hooder not be present, a faculty member or trustee will bestow the hood to that graduate.
- After the hooding, you will pose briefly with your graduate for a photograph then exit the stage.
- Your graduate will then return to their seat and you will return to yours.
Watch the Family Hooding Instructional Video (coming soon)
For safety reasons, please observe the following restrictions.
- No signs, balloons, air-horns, strollers, bright camera lights or tripods permitted in the auditorium.
- Graduates and family hooders please leave all “carry-along” items (purses, cell phones, electronic devices, books, flowers, etc.) with family members or securely in your car. Graduates should not carry anything during the processional and family hooders will not be permitted to take personal belongings on stage.
- Pets and other animals are not permitted with the exception of service animals (i.e. dogs and miniature horses) defined by the ADA as animals that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability. Service animals are work animals, not pets.
Allowable Items (subject to search)
- Small purses
- Outside, non-alcoholic beverages
- Refillable water bottles
- Food and snacks brought from home that fit within personal bags
- Prior to the ceremony, you may drop off a lei at the Will Call Station for delivery to your graduate.
Doors Close 10 Minutes Before Each Ceremony
- Auditorium doors will open for guests one hour before each ceremony.
- Auditorium doors will close 10 minutes before the ceremony begins to clear the lobby and aisles to prepare for the academic procession (graduates and faculty marching in).
- The doors will reopen after the processional, national anthem and invocation (approximately 30 minutes).
- Late arriving guests will be seated immediately following the invocation.
Graduates Running Late
- Please remember that commencement is mandatory for all graduates! If you are afraid you’re going to miss the start of the ceremony, take a deep breath, then call or text the emergency number and leave your name, program and what we can expect.
- Emergency phone number for graduates. Call or text: (541) 981-8457. Please note, this phone is only monitored on the day of the ceremony.
End of Ceremony
- The ceremony will last approximately 2 hours. When making lunch/dinner reservations, allow for ample time for the class photo, diploma pick-up, and photos with guests following the ceremony.
- If you have completed all degree requirements, your diploma will be available for pick-up after the ceremony.
- Family and friends may meet their graduate on the Garden Patio at Boulder Falls Center or at COMP-Northwest Open House following the ceremony, graduate photos and diploma pick-up.
Commencement Ceremony and Boulder Falls Security Information
Western University of Health Sciences and the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific-Northwest will conduct security checks to ensure the safety of all our guests. We strive to provide an enjoyable experience and we appreciate your patience and understanding.
Even though doors to the tent open at 9:00 a.m., bag check stations will open at 8:30 a.m., so please arrive early to allow for delays. This event is open to all, so seating is first come, first seated; seating is not guaranteed.
PLEASE NOTE – ALL guests entering the venue will be subject to bag checks. Large bags and coolers will not be allowed into venue.
- Wrapped presents (leave them in your vehicle)
- Alcoholic beverages
- Noisemakers (horns, whistles, artificial noisemakers)
- Fireworks or explosives
- Folding chairs
- Illegal drugs
- Weapons or ammunition
- Aluminum cans (i.e. pop cans)
- Glass containers
- Hard-sided coolers
- Pets (except service animals)
- Strollers (must be checked at Guest Services)
- Smoking, including electric or vapor products, is prohibited in or around WesternU venues
Guests declining inspection or in possession of prohibited items will not be allowed into the venue. Guests in possession of prohibited items inside the venue will be asked to leave immediately. A guest who does not leave when asked will be considered a trespasser. Guests who are disruptive during the ceremony will be removed from the immediately and will not be allowed re-entry.
In the event of an emergency, an announcement will be made from the Commencement stage to direct graduates and attendees to exit the venue in a safe and orderly manner.
If such an event were to occur, please move to the nearest exit as quickly and safely as possible.
Once you have exited the venue, please use mobile phones to arrange to meet your graduate or family member.
To request accommodations in advance, a graduate may indicate their needs when they complete the Graduate Participation Form. Please note, only graduates have access to the form.
Should you need to speak to anyone regarding your request, the friendly staff at the Harris Family Center for Disability and Health Policy (CDHP) are available to assist you. Please contact:
Kelly Mack, Administrative Associate | (541) 259-0305
WesternU’s commencement assistants will be on site and available to assist you with the following:
- Wheelchair Assistance: Wheelchairs will be on site for those who may need them, and seating has been reserved for wheelchair access. Staff will be available to help you to your seat should you or your guests need assistance
- Family Hooders Who Require Assistance: Upon arrival, please check-in at the CDHP booth located in the accessible parking lot for assistance to your seat in the designated family hooder section.
- Deaf/Hard of Hearing: Reserved seating has been set aside for anyone needing a sign language interpreter. Captioning and assistive listening devices can also be made available upon request
- Blind/Visually Impaired: Seating arrangements can be made for anyone with a visual impairment
- Service Animals: Pets and other animals are not permitted with the exception of service animals (i.e. dogs and miniature horses) defined by the ADA as animals that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability. Service animals are work animals, not pets.
- Other Needs: If you need other disability related accommodations we will be happy to work with you
Colleges planning an in-person or virtual celebration will contact their graduates directly with details.