Frequently Asked Questions
Preparing for Convocation
Please visit the University Secretariat's website for more information.
Please check back in May for more information about how to register to attend a future Convocation as a walk-on.
A walk-on graduate's Convocation day is the same as the current graduating class. Please review the Student Checklist for specific details, including pre-registering for your free 5x7 portrait and your regalia, as well as the timeline of activities for the day of your ceremony.
You will attend the ceremony corresponding to your faculty and degree along with the current graduating class. The Order of Convocation can be found on the University Secretariat's website.
The experience is mainly the same, but there are two main differences:
- Your name will not be in the program because you are attending a Convocation ceremony after your official graduation date - the names are only in the program for the date when the student officially graduated. Copies of past programs are available from Student Central, WSSB Rm. 1120.
- If you have already picked up your diploma, you will not receive it again the day you walk on. The diplomas are handed out after graduates have crossed the stage. You will receive an empty diploma folder to be used for photo purposes.
We encourage graduates with permanent or short term disabilities who require special arrangements to participate in their Convocation ceremony to email firstname.lastname@example.org when your conferral of degree or award of diploma is confirmed. Please use the subject line "Graduation Accessibility". Western strives to provide an inclusive environment and we will work to ensure that each graduate is able to participate in a way that acknowledges equality, inclusiveness and celebration.
- While the Convocation ceremony takes place in Alumni Hall, other events of the day including parking, regalia pickup, Alumni reception, etc. are in various locations across campus. Review the Convocation Day Student Checklist for more information.
- The processional route travelled by graduates on the day of the ceremony include stairs, ramps and long hallways.
- Accessibility Services at Western has helpful resources, including campus maps and building floor plans.
You can preorder your Academic Regalia at http://buildagrad.ca/Western during posted times. If you do not order regalia by the preorder deadline, you can still rent regalia the day of your ceremony for an extra charge. Rental preorder dates will be posted on the Photo and Academic Regalia page. For further details, please contact the Book Store at Western.
Attending graduates will have their portraits taken at Convocation, and Western will provide a 5x7 photograph free of charge after the ceremony. Please visit Photo and Academic Reglia for step-by-step instructions on how to preorder your photo.
No. The Order of Convocation dictates the date and time of your graduation ceremony. If you would like to attend your graduation you must attend the ceremony at the date and time specified. You may attend other ceremonies as a guest of another graduate provided that they are able to provide you with a ticket that will permit you entrance into their ceremony.
The 10:00am ceremony generally does not run past 12:00pm, and the 3:00pm ceremony generally does not run past 5:00pm.
Convocation ceremonies are recorded and a live webcast of each ceremony is available online here. Convocation videos will be posted on Western’s YouTube channel 6-8 weeks following the ceremony and will be available online for a year.
During the ceremonies, photographers from Western will be taking photos which may be used by the University for promotional or archival purposes. The photos taken during Convocation may or may not include your recognizable image. Visit the Convocation Day Photography and Video page for more information.
Western encourages all students to celebrate their Convocation day with friends and family however, only those individuals eligible to graduate are permitted to cross the stage. Equally, we ask that your family remain in the seating reserved for guests.
Guests should park at the South Valley Parking Lot and follow the path up the stairs to Alumni Hall (see map). Parking will be free of charge on a first-come first-served basis. Shuttle service will be provided between Alumni Hall and the South Valley Parking Lot at no charge. Accessible parking is available in the Alumni Hall parking lot.
Shuttle drivers have been instructed not to install car seats and request that the parents install the seats themselves. Shuttle drivers have also been instructed to ensure all children are placed in individual seats with seat belts and not be allowed to sit on parents’ laps while vehicles are traveling throughout the campus.
For addtional information, please visit the Arrival and Assembly page.
We encourage graduates and their families to arrive 2 hours before their ceremony to allow enough time to park, pick-up Academic Regalia, and find your line-up location
All graduates MUST report to their line-up location no later than the times listed below:
- Morning Ceremony: 8:45 a.m.
- Afternoon Ceremony: 1:45 p.m.
If you have applied to graduate but will not be able to attend your Convocation ceremony, you may participate in a future ceremony. (e.g. those who cannot attend in June may wish to be a part of the Autumn Convocation). If you wish to participate in a future ceremony, please visit Student Center one month prior to the ceremony you would like to attend. Please note there is no deadline for walk-on requests.
If you have already applied to graduate and wish to cancel your application, please go to Room 1120, Western Student Services Building, and fill out a Graduation Cancellation form. The deadline to cancel your graduation application for the Spring Convocation is May 1st. The deadline to cancel your graduation application for the Autumn Convocation is October 1st.
Students who preregistered for a photo will receive an email from GradImages after Convocation with a Promotional Code and Customer Number to log in with.
Students who did not preregister for a photo can go to www.gradimages.ca to contact the Customer Service Team for a Promotional Code. In either case, please visit Retrieving Your Photo for step-by-step instructions.
We ask that all graduates return their Academic Regalia by 6:00 p.m. (location TBD).
Absolutely! Directly following the Convocation ceremony, we welcome graduates and their families to take advantage of our beautiful campus for photo opportunities. Some great areas include, the courtyard by the 3M Centre, the front gates by the Western Sign, UC Hill in front of the tower, the Ivey Garden (back of University College), and the courtyard by the UC (to the North), in front of the McIntosh Gallery.
Yes. Please visit Degrees/Diplomas for more information.
Following each ceremony, we invite graduates to join fellow alumni for refreshments. Location and times TBD.
Staff and Faculty
If I am a member of Faculty, Senate, the Board of Governors or an Emeritus/a Professor, can I take part in the Academic Procession?
Yes, members of Faculty, Senate, the Board of Governors and Emeritus/a Professors should email email@example.com if they wish to participate in the Academic Procession.
At Convocation, faculty members at Western and other recognized universities will be permitted to hood immediate family members, and doctoral supervisors will be permitted to hood their doctoral candidates, provided that arrangements are made with the Marshal of Convocation at least one week before the relevant Convocation ceremony.
Academic Regalia is provided to all members of faculty when joining the academic procession. It is not provided for use during a faculty awards ceremony. For information about ordering your Regalia, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Staff are welcome to volunteer to serve as an usher during a Convocation ceremony. Staff should contact the appropriate Dean's office (for the Faculty that the ceremony is for) in order to obtain further information.