Graduate Ceremony Details

Required COVID-19 Testing for Graduates

Graduate Commencement
Doctoral and Master degrees
Friday, May 7, 2021
4:00 p.m. Ceremony begins
2:30 p.m. Pinnacle Bank Arena doors open to public

Pinnacle Bank Arena
400 Pinnacle Arena Drive, Lincoln, NE 68508

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Required COVID-19 Testing for Graduates. All graduates participating in Commencement on May 7 and 8 are required to receive a negative COVID-19 test result prior to their graduation ceremony. Vaccination status is not a factor. Details to schedule your test.

Does a graduating student need to sign-up to attend the May 7th Commencement?
  • Yes.
  • On Monday, March 29, each graduating student for Masters and Doctoral degrees received a notification at their @huskers.unl.edu email account from the Office of the University Registrar requesting them to complete the Commencement and Diploma Form in MyRED. Students needed to log into MyRED and complete the MyRED To Dos, including the Commencement Attendance form by Friday, April 9.
  • GOOD NEWS FOR DOCTORAL STUDENTS. Due to a change in anticipated graduation attendance numbers, we will be able to allow one faculty advisor to be seated on the arena floor with their Doctoral student candidate and escort them to the stage for Doctoral Hooding. Because of this recent change, Doctoral students need to check their @huskers.unl.edu email account for immediate steps for participation details or contact Kelsey Sims at Kelsey@unl.edu
  • Doctoral students must submit the Doctoral Hooding form to the Office of Graduate Studies and they also must complete the Commencement Attendance form in MyRED To Dos.
COVID-19 Safety Precautions
  • Organizers are partnering with the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department and Pinnacle Bank Arena to ensure proper distancing and to minimize the risk of coronavirus transmission.
  • Face coverings will be required to accommodate directed health measures. Face coverings will be required for entry and must be worn at all times when inside the commencement venue.
  • All graduates participating in Commencement on May 7 and 8 are required to receive a negative COVID-19 test result prior to their graduation ceremony. Vaccination status is not a factor. Details to schedule your test.
  • "Building access granted" status on SaferCommunity app will be required for student entry.
  • All graduate and public seating will be socially distanced.
Graduate Arrival on May 7th
  • 2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. Graduates will enter Pinnacle Bank Arena via the south lobby entrance (off R Street). Look for the sign that denotes Graduate Only Entrance.
  • Please bring your N Card and cell phone so that Wellness Attendants can check your Building Access Granted status on your Safer Community App.
  • All graduates must be checked-in no later than 3:30 p.m. for the 4:00 p.m. ceremony.
  • Graduates will check-in and go directly to their assigned seating on the arena floor.
  • Clear bag policies must be followed.
Can I participate in the May 2021 Commencement ceremony if I am a 2020 graduate? Because of the need to maintain social distancing during the continuing pandemic, ceremonies will be limited to May 2021 graduates and their guests. Future ceremonies will be offered to 2020 graduates who wish to return to campus for an in-person celebration of their degrees.
Will commencement be streamed live? Yes. For guests not able to join in person, commencement will be streamed live on the Commencement website beginning at 4:00 p.m. (CT), Friday, May 7.

Tickets & Entering the Arena

Do guests need tickets to attend Graduate Commencement at Pinnacle Bank Arena?
  • No.
  • GOOD NEWS: based on projected graduating class numbers and revised directed health measures recommended guest seating is no longer limited to 4 to 6 people per graduate..
  • Doors open to public at 2:30 p.m. seating is general admission and adheres to directed health measures.
  • All guests will be directed to designated socially distanced seating by arena attendants.
  • Wheelchair accessible seating with one companion seat is available.
  • Face coverings will be required to accommodate directed health measures. Face coverings will be required for entry and must be worn at all times when inside the commencement venue.
  • Guests are not allowed on the arena floor.
  • Clear bag policies must be followed.
Guest Arrival on May 7th
  • Guests should enter the Pinnacle Bank Arena via the southwest door along R Street. Doors to the Arena open at 2:30 pm. The Arena has a clear bag policy. Face coverings and social distancing are required while in the Arena, as well as highly encouraged when you are outside the Arena.
Seating Accessibility
  • Handicap accessible seating for commencement guests is available in sections 106, 107, 110, 112, 114, 117 and 118 on the main concourse level of the Pinnacle Bank Arena.
  • Representatives from the American Red Cross are present at UNL commencement and are located on Level 3 at Gate 112. If you need additional assistance or have questions about seating, please see an Arena Usher.

Cap and Gown 

How do I order my cap and gown for May 7th Graduate Commencement?

To participate in commencement ceremonies, every graduate is required to wear academic regalia.

What to expect when ordering regalia for Graduate Commencement.

Master’s degree students will purchase and keep their cap, tassel, hood and gown.

Doctoral students will rent UNL branded gowns and hoods for commencement. Doctoral students will keep their cap or tam and tassel. The Herff Jones vendor will supply doctoral students with a return box, prepaid mailing label and return information for gown and hood.

If you are a doctoral graduate who would like to purchase custom academic regalia, please click on the "purchase fine quality doctor regalia" on the Herff Jones online ordering site.

There are two options for ordering academic regalia for May 2021 commencement.

OPTION ONE

Order online through UNL vendor, Herff Jones. The website is open NOW.

  • To order and pay online for your regalia go to: the Herff Jones website.
  • Herff Jones will ship directly to the student-provided address, with delivery prior to commencement. International orders will be accepted, but shipping costs and deliveries may vary.
  • Herff Jones will accept regular, online shipment orders until Tuesday, April 13.
  • After April 13, and until Saturday, April 24, late shipping costs will apply.
  • April 24 is the final deadline for domestic (U.S.) home shipment and the final closing date for online ordering. Please contact Herff Jones about international deliveries.
  • After online ordering closes, you may purchase regalia at the University Bookstore or attend Gradfest.

OPTION TWO

Attend Gradfest in person at the Nebraska Union Ballroom (2nd floor), City Campus, April 20 or 21.

  • No pre-ordering required.
  • Pay for academic regalia at Gradfest.
  • Graduate receives regalia at Gradfest.
What and when is Gradfest?

Gradfest is a celebration event sponsored by the Nebraska Alumni Association.

Tuesday, April 20 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Wednesday, April 21 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Nebraska Union Ballroom (2nd floor), City Campus

Details will also be sent via email to all graduates and posted on the Nebraska Alumni Association website.

At Gradfest students can:

  • Pick up in-person and pay for commencement regalia.
  • Purchase a diploma frame, class ring and other memorabilia.
  • Learn about the Nebraska Alumni Association membership.
  • Register to win prizes such as a diploma frame.
  • Celebrate achievement.
  • After Gradfest, and once the Herff Jones website ordering is closed, caps and gowns can be purchased at the University Bookstore in the Nebraska Union, City Campus.

Parking

  • Paid parking is available at city Park&Go parking garages and metered street parking around the Pinnacle Bank Arena (PBA).
  • R Street in front of the Pinnacle Bank Arena will be open for drop off.
  • Download a parking map