NOTE: Commencement dates for the 2020 academic year are May 9, 2020, August 8, 2020 and December 12, 2020.
Information relevant to each ceremony will be posted nearer the date of the ceremony and will be emailed to graduating students’ HBU email. If you are a May 9, 2020, graduate and have not yet filled out a Commencement Ceremony Participation Form, please do so now.
About the Commencement Ceremony
Thank you for joining with us in our safety measures as we respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. As a result, HBU commencement ceremonies scheduled for May graduates are postponed. Be assured that, for students who are graduating this semester, degrees will still be officially conferred in May.
May graduates are invited to participate in a commencement ceremony in August. May graduates will be recognized in keeping with all HBU graduation traditions. The exact time schedule will be determined at a later date. Also, the ring ceremony hosted by the Alumni Association will be held on August 6 and will recognize both May and August graduates.
Congratulations graduates! We look forward to celebrating with you this summer!
Graduates must report to Belin Chapel an hour before the ceremony.
Tickets will be issued for the commencement ceremonies. Information regarding tickets will be posted at a later date. Guests without a ticket will not be allowed entry into the Dunham Theater but will instead be directed to Belin Chapel to watch a live video feed of the ceremony. For guests that are not able to attend, online streaming will be available for viewing the commencement ceremony at HBU.edu/live on Channel 1.
Cap and Gown Information
Please contact the University Store for detailed information.
Ceremony Etiquette for Graduates
MEN: Wear a white or light-colored shirt. Dark pants and shoes, either brown or black, are appropriate. Do not wear jeans, tennis shoes or flip flops. WOMEN: Dark shoes are appropriate. If pants are worn, please wear dark pants. Do not wear jeans, tennis shoes or flip flops. If you received a white collar with your gown, do not use it.
The academic cap is designed to be worn on TOP of the head, NOT on the back of the head. CAPS ARE NOT TO BE DECORATED. Each graduate will also receive an academic hood as a part of their regalia. To prevent the academic cap from falling off during the hooding part of the ceremony, it is important that the cap be placed on top of the head. Women, fasten the cap SECURELY to your head. NOTE: only graduate students will be hooded on stage. Undergraduate students will not be hooded on stage, but will wear their hoods.
Undergraduate students achieving the appropriate GPA to graduate Summa Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude or Cum Laude may pick up their honor cords from the bookstore after August 6th. The bookstore will also have the honor cords available graduation morning in the Belin Chapel. Approved honor cords from the following Honor Societies may also be worn during graduation – Sigma Theta Tau (Nursing), Alpha Kappa Delta (Sociology), Psi Chi (Education), Kappa Delta Pi (Education), Phi Alpha Theta (History), Delta Mu Delta (Business), Beta Beta Beta (Science/Math), Omicron Delta Kappa (Science/Math), Iota Sigma Pi (Science/Math), Alpha Epsilon Delta (Science/Math), Alpha Chi, Sigma Pi Sigma, Theta Alpha Kappa (Christianity), American Red Cross & Alpha Mu Gamma (Spanish). Honors College students may also wear their Honors College medals. Sorority or fraternity sashes are not appropriate for the commencement ceremony.
Please DO NOT bring purses, suit coats,or other valuables into the Belin Chapel.
Ceremony Etiquette for Guests
The Commencement Ceremony is a most dignified ceremony. Decorum and courtesy are very important. Please refrain from moving around once you have entered the Theater and been ushered to your seat. Food and beverages are not permitted in the Theater during the ceremony. Helium balloons and air horns are not permitted. Strollers cannot be brought into Dunham Theater. For your convenience, we have a live video feed in Belin Chapel next to Dunham Theater. For young children who are disruptive to the audience, we ask that you use this facility. Guests with wheelchairs and other mobility assistance equipment should arrive early and see University hosts for help with special seating. You are requested to remain for the entire ceremony. Guests arriving after the start of the ceremony will be directed to Belin Chapel.
The University provides a professional photographer for the ceremony. Photographs will be offered for sale by the vendor, Marc Nathan Photography, who will contact all graduates at their permanent address on file with the Office of the Registrar within a few weeks. To contact the photographer, send an email to email@example.com.
Family members and other guests will be allowed to spend a short time in special areas near the front, off to the side. Please do not block the aisles or the view of others in the Theater, and please observe the directions of the University hosts and police officers.
Students will receive their diploma while participating in the commencement ceremony. Students not attending the commencement ceremony may pick up their diploma from the Office of the Registrar, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday – Friday. Photo ID is required.
Degrees with Distinction
Honors at graduation are awarded to undergraduate baccalaureate students who have completed a minimum of 64 semester alpha-grade hours in residence at HBU and have earned an appropriate number of grade points to be eligible for the honors indicated. An average standing of 3.50 or higher entitles the student to graduate cum laude; 3.70 or higher magna cum laude; 3.90 or higher summa cum laude.