Commencement 2023

Commencement 2023
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Frequently Asked Questions




Please be sure you have registered to graduate through the Office of Records & Registration. Once you have done this, (including December and August 2022 graduates) you DO NOT have to do anything further. Just keep checking your New Paltz email (December & August 2022 graduates should check their primary email account registered with the college if now using gmail, etc.) where information will be sent as it becomes available.

General question(s) NOT ANSWERED BELOW can be sent to Anything related to the status of your credits or grades, should be directed to the Office of Records and Registration.

Information about cap & gown ordering will be posted in the spring semester. 


Friday, May 19, 2023

Graduate Ceremony

6 pm - 7:30 pm

Old Main Quad

Saturday, May 20, 2023

College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

10 am - Noon

Old Main Quad

Sunday, May 21, 2023

Schools of Business, Education, Fine & Performing Arts, Science & Engineering

10 am - Noon

Old Main Quad


All ceremonies are rain or shine. IF THE WEEKEND WEATHER IS HOT! Please plan accordingly as the ceremony is NOT TENTED. For everyone's safety, bag checks are conducted at the gate entrances of the reserved seating area. Guests are encouraged not to bring large bags into the reserved seating area.


Line up:

Graduate Ceremony:

Friday, May 19, 2023

Please line up in Lecture Center South no later than 5:30 p.m.


Undergraduate Ceremonies

Please line up in Athletic and Wellness Center.

Saturday, May 20, 2023: College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Sunday, May 21, 2023: Schools of Business, Fine & Performing Arts, Education; Science & Engineering

Please line up at the Athletic & Wellness Center Gym no later than 9:15 a.m.

Line-up locations:




The Student Participation Card will be used to annouce your name and receive a sample picture taken as you approach/cross the stage.

Student Participation Cards for the Name Announcer will be distributed at the Welcome Center (Student Union Lobby). Pick up dates and time will be posted during the spring semester. Student Partcipation Cards will also be available at your LINE UP area if you are unable to visit campus before your ceremony.

Please fill these out in advance to save time at the line up area. There will be a space to add your name phonetically if it's difficult to pronounce.


Graduating students may reserve up to four guest tickets.

The College will provide reserved seating on the Old Main Quad for up to four guests per student. Graduating students should keep an eye on their email (or their primary email account they have registered with the Office of Records & Registration such as gmail, etc.).

Tickets are only available online to graduating students who have completed their 2023 Application for Graduation by the deadline date posted with the Office of Records and Registration.

Extra guests may bring lawn chairs and view the ceremony from outside the reserved seating area.  All children two years old plus will require a ticket for entry.

Due to capacity limits in the reserved seating area, we cannot exceed the four reserved guest ticket policy. No exceptions.

Accessing guest tickets will be posted during the spring semester.



Tickets can also be picked up on day of ceremony






All three Commencement ceremonies will be livestreamed for those who are not able to attend in person and will have closed captioning. These can be accessed from the SUNY New Paltz home page.

  1. Complete 2023 Application for graduation due dates/academic eligibility:
  2. Obtain your cap and gown, honor cord, and study abroad sash (this information will be posted during the spring semester)

Students submit the degree application by the deadline as listed during the last term of attendance. For questions, please contact Records and Registration

January 1: Degree Applications for May conferral

March 15:  Degree Applications for August conferral

July 1: Degree Applications for December conferral


Due to capacity concerns, we are limiting this year's ceremony participation to only eligible candidates/graduates from the following classes:

August/December 2022;January/May/August 2023.


Guests who need extra assistance (i.e. wheel chair or walker) there is special seating in our disability seating area for your comfort. Four reserved tickets can be used here. To reserve a spot, please fill out the online form below by Monday, May 15, 2023. During the week of May 15, 2023, students who registered their guests will receive detailed instructions and a map (similar to below) with disability parking locations and entry into the disability seating area. Disability tags or license plates are required to park in the designated disability parking lots.

Fill out my online form.
Graduate Disability Seating, Drop Off, Entrance and Parking
Disability Section Seating maps:

Information will be posted during the spring semester. Please check back.



Your grade point average of courses taken at SUNY New Paltz as of Fall 2022 pre-qualifies you for Latin honors. The honor cord symbolizes a GPA of 3.30 or higher and is offered to students with a pre-qualifying GPA.

Latin Honors designation for May and August 2023 graduates will be determined following submission of final spring and summer grades, respectively.  Latin honors will be noted on the transcript and diploma. For additional details concerning Honors, please view the Policies:Graduation with Honors page. If you still have questions about Latin Honors calculations, please contact the Office of Records and Registration directly.

If you meet this criteria, you will be notified in the spring from the Commencement Office on how to obtain your honor cords.


Please check with your individual school/department on how to obtain these, if available.


You will receive an email invitation in your New Paltz email account that comes from the Office of Institutional Research and has the subject Graduating Student Survey.

If you have any other issues, problems, or questions about the survey, please contact the Office of Institutional Research and Planning by phone at 845-257-2951 or via email at


Opportunity to learn how day will unfold and pick up your Student Participation Card for Name Announcer, which is also needed to send you sample of your graduatoin picture as you cross the stage. Note if you cannot attend the information session, Student Participation Cards will be distributed at  the Welcome Center, inside the Student Union Building, Dates TBA. These cards will also be distibuteded at line up areas. Having these cards filled out in advance will save time at the line up area. There is a space where you can spell your name phonetically if it's hard to pronounce.

Information Session dates TBA



Following the campus pivot to a mask-optional policy for most indoor spaces, we will go with a similar model for the outdoor Commencement ceremonies. The College will support all students, faculty, staff and visitors who choose to wear masks during the events, but we will not require anyone to do so.


During the spring 2022 semester, SUNY New Paltz has required weekly testing of our unvaccinated campus population (students and employees). Those who are vaccinated and boosted are not required to test. Everyone is encouraged to get a test if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and to quarantine while they are experiencing symptoms.

These policies will remain in effect for Commencement. Students, faculty and staff who are vaccinated and boosted do not need to test. Those who are unvaccinated and/or unboosted should get a test prior to their ceremony. All participants and attendees should get a test if they experience COVID-19 symptoms prior to Commencement and to refrain from attending if they are experiencing symptoms.

Seating Maps: (To be posted shortly)
Graduate: Friday, May 19, 2023
Undergraduate: Saturday, May 20, 2023 - College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Undergraduate: Sunday, May 21, 2023 - Schools of Business, Education, Fine & Performing Arts, Science & Engineering

Reception information TBA


Yes, there will be closed captioning for live streaming and on site. We will also have an interpreter. We are currently exploring ways for a closed captioning option on personal devices. If you require assistance, please contact the SUNY New paltz Disability Resource Center at or call 845-257-3020.


The Disability Resource Center provides services to students with permanent or temporary disabilities to ensure access to programs and activities in the pursuit of attaining their educational objectives. Students who need assistance to participate in the May 2022 ceremony, should contact the Disability Resource Center at or call 845-257-3020.


Campus Map & Parking: (To be posted shortly)

Graduate: Friday, May 19, 2023
Undergraduate: Saturday, May 20, 2023 - College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Undergraduate: Sunday, May 21, 2023 - Schools of Business, Education, Fine & Performing Arts, Science & Engineering


A shuttle bus will be provided transporting guests who wish this service to and from the parking losts. 

 A few gem cars will also be transporting guests to and from the parking areas to Old Main Quad (including disability seating area). 


• From NYS Thruway (I-87):
Exit 18: Turn left at the traffic light after toll booth.
Turn left at first traffic light onto South Putt Corners
Rd. Follow that road to the end and turn right onto
Route 32.

Exit 17: After the toll booth, follow the signs to Route
300 North. At the light, turn left on to Route 300
North. After about 3 miles, continue straight onto
Route 32 North. After about 14 miles you will see
several campus entrances on the left side of the road.

• Additional Routes:
Directions to Ceremony
Alternative Routes to Avoid Main Street Gridlock:


If you require a letter, please contact the Center for International Programs.


 The college contracts with Genosee Photo to take photographs of every candidate walking across the main stage. This service is provided without cost or obligation. Within 10 days of the ceremony you will receive a proof by mail.  If you wish to order, you may. For more information call 800-345-7427.

Senior Pictures (Portraits) Students should contact Center for Student Engagement at 845-257-3025 or LifeTouch/Prestige Portraits at 1-800-687-9327.


Commencement is a formal ceremony; please dress accordingly.  The general rule is light weight, non-restrictive clothing. Men do not have to wear jackets, but should wear a shirt and tie. Please do not wear shorts, jeans, or sweat pants. Comfortable shoes.

It is recommended that candidates try on their caps & gowns to make sure they fit correctly and are presentable. Candidates are not permitted to accessorize their gowns other than cords or sashes from recognized organizations and departments on campus.


No. To get the wrinkles out, just take the gown out of the bag and hang it up for a few days before the ceremony. This allows time for the fabric to relax. DO NOT iron the gown. The direct heat will destroy the fabric.


Yes as long as there are no profanities.


SUNY New Paltz will separately recognize your graduating class. These classes will be listed individually by school, graduation month and year in the commencement program. Your graduation year "charm" that can be worn on the graduate cap tassel, will be sent with your commencement regalia.


Please check with the campus bookstore or Herff Jones.


If you are unsure of the titling of your specific degree, check with Records and Registration at 845-257-3100, or contact your adviser.


No, the official diploma is not presented at Commencement. Diplomas will be mailed to the candidate's permanent address approximately six-to-eight weeks after Commencement from the office of Records and Registration. A diploma cannot be issued until all obligations, such as library fees, parking tickets, etc., are cleared.


You can choose which ceremony you want to participate in, but please be sure to choose the correct date when you download your tickets. The commencement office does not need to be notified.