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In order to keep everyone informed, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions regarding Commencement 2020.

Please read through the FAQs before contacting the College, as they will provide a more timely/immediate answer. You can start by choosing a question from one of the sections below, or by skipping down to view all questions.

Questions Surrounding Postponement

General Commencement Questions

List of FAQs

What if I cannot attend?

We’ll miss you! Graduates who cannot attend will be listed in absentia in the program.

Can I return my cap and gown?

Caps and gown are provided by the College to graduates free of charge, but if you are not able to participate in October, you may donate your cap and gown to a future grad. Please notify the Office of Constituent Engagement of your intentions.

Will I still receive my class pin if I cannot attend?

Yes, as is tradition members of the Class of 2020 will receive their class pins during assembly for the ceremony on Sunday morning. If you cannot attend, your pin will be mailed with you along with a program.

Will there be a live-streamed ceremony? What will be included?

Yes. As we have done in years past, the Commencement ceremony will be live-streamed for those unable to attend in person. The broadcast will include the entirety of the ceremony. Please watch future communications regarding commencement for information on the exact platform and format of the live broadcast.

When will we receive official invitations and be able to register for Commencement events?

As details are finalized, updates will be posted to ripon.edu/commencement. By late summer/early fall, the Office of Constituent Engagement will send invitations and begin accepting online registrations.

Will I still be a college graduate when I finish classes in May?

As long as you complete all of the necessary requirements to do so, yes you will be considered a graduate of Ripon College following a vote of the faculty scheduled for May 15. The date on your diploma will be May 17, 2020 — the date originally scheduled prior to the postponement.

I need an official transcript for my job/graduate school, how do I get one?

The Office of the Registrar will send a complimentary official transcript, with the degree posted, to all 2020 graduates, most likely in the first part of June. After that, additional transcripts are available by request from the Office of the Registrar. More information is available at: https://ripon.edu/transcripts/

When will students receive diplomas?

For graduates who are able to attend the ceremony in October, diplomas will be presented at that time. For those who are unable to attend, diplomas will be mailed along with a copy of the program, class pin and any other mementos from Commencement weekend.

Where can I stay and eat in the Ripon area?

Click here for a list of lodging and dining options in the area.

Do I need a ticket to attend the Commencement ceremony?

There are no tickets for the Commencement ceremony. Seating is first-come, first-served. While seating will be available outdoors, there are also plenty of grassy areas, and guests are welcome to bring blankets or lawn chairs. If the ceremony is moved indoors, seating will be more limited; so guests should plan to arrive early.

Where is the Commencement rain location?

Commencement will be held Sunday, October 4, whether it rains, sleets or snows. Sunday’s 1 p.m. ceremony is traditionally on the lawn of Harwood Memorial Union, but should there be inclement weather, the ceremony then will be moved inside the field house in Willmore Center, located at 400 Union Street. Further updates on the day will be found on our Facebook page. In Wisconsin, October weather can be balmy or downright frigid. More often than not, it is both on the same day. Please be prepared for changes in temperature by dressing in layers.

Where can I park?

Free parking is available on the streets surrounding the Union; however, spots will fill fast and early. Click to view our Campus Map. Off-street parking, denoted on the map by a P, is available in lots behind Smith Hall, on Thorne Street, at the corner of Seward Street and Woodside Avenue and off Ransom Street across from East Hall. Accessible parking, denoted on the map with an H, is available near the Union, outside Pickard Commons and at Evans Admission Center. Accessible parking also will be marked on Seward Street. If the ceremony is held inside or under a tent, free parking is available.

Is accessible seating and parking available?

Accessible seating and parking is available for the Commencement ceremony. Please ask an usher if you need special assistance. Individuals requiring special assistance should call the Office of Constituent Engagement at 920-748-8126 to ensure appropriate accommodations.

What’s the policy on honor cords?

In past years, the College prohibited the wearing of any cords or stoles other than College honor cords and Phi Beta Kappa stoles. All departmental honor cords, Greek stoles and other accouterments (within reason) are now allowed during the ceremony. Those items, however, will not be provided by the College or listed in the program.