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Event Information
Important Deadlines
Regalia Information
Graduate Celebration Box
Graduate Registration
Digital Celebration Resources

Event Information

Date: Saturday, May 15, 2021
Time: 2:00 pm PT
Join Online: Find the link to the ceremony on May 15, 2021 at cgu.edu/commencement

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, our annual in-person commencement celebration will once again be held virtually. Please join President Len Jessup and Provost Patricia Easton as they host a livestream commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 15, 2021 at 2:00 pm (Pacific Time). Family, friends, and the CGU community are invited to join in this virtual event as we celebrate the achievements of our students receiving their diplomas.
Following the commencement celebration graduates and their guests are encouraged to join their school’s conferral ceremony and reception. Links to each school or division’s conferral ceremony and reception will be posted on the commencement livestream page.

Once we are able to be together safely, CGU intends to host a celebratory event where doctoral and MFA graduates will be hooded, and we can laud every graduate in person.

Virtual Participation

The virtual ceremony is a wonderful opportunity for you, your friends, and family to attend from virtually anywhere. The celebration will consist of a livestream commencement ceremony, which includes speeches and then the school or division conferral ceremonies and receptions. During the conferral ceremony and reception, degree conferrals will take place live, along with a final toast.

Important Deadlines


March 8 Submit your regalia order to Huntley Bookstore (only if you want to submit a picture of yourself in regalia; otherwise, orders can be submitted after this date)
March 22 Last day to submit your initial Commencement Registration Form
March 22 Last day to update your mailing address for Graduate Celebration Box
April 9 Last day to submit Petition to Participate in Commencement (for expected Summer 2021 graduates only)
April 16 Last day to request accommodations (e.g. captioning or ASL interpreter) for conferral ceremony and reception
April 21 Last day to submit a photo for inclusion in your school or division’s conferral ceremony

Regalia Information

Regalia is not required for the virtual ceremony. However, based on feedback from last year’s virtual celebration, we have partnered with the Huntley Bookstore to offer graduates the option to purchase regalia should they wish to use it for pictures or to wear during your school’s conferral ceremony. As noted in the deadlines above, if you wish to submit a picture of yourself in regalia for your school’s degree conferral ceremony, you will need to place your order with Huntley Bookstore by March 8.

Graduate Celebration Box

Each graduate of the 2020-21 academic year will receive a Graduate Celebration Box in the mail, which will include a commemorative stole. Graduates who attend their school’s conferral ceremony and reception will be asked to place this stole around their necks to celebrate your membership in the CGU graduate community and your perseverance in completing your degree during the adversity we have all faced over the last year.

The box will also contain a printed Commencement program, among a few other items. Please be sure to either update your mailing address either through your student portal or on the Commencement Registration Form to ensure your box is mailed the correct address.

Graduate Registration

All eligible graduates (see Commencement Participation Policy) will receive an email containing information and a link to register for the ceremony. During the registration process, graduates will be asked to provide name pronunciation information, a photo, and a personal message for their school’s conferral ceremony.


If you require accommodations such as captioning or an ASL interpreter, please email: disabilityservcies@cgu.edu by April 16, 2021. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Office of Disability Services at disability.services@cgu.edu

Ways to Celebrate Virtually

Whether you are emailing, texting, posting on social media, using Zoom, or even placing a sign in your front yard, we are here to help you celebrate our 2020 and 2021 graduates! Below are celebration kits to download and use to commemorate the occasion and various scenes across the CGU campus to use as your Zoom background. Show your CGU Pride online!

Graduation Announcements

CGU collaborates with CB Graduation Announcements/Balfour to provide personalized ordering options for CGU students.

Digital Celebration Kit

Want a lawn sign to brag about your accomplishment? Download it here! Looking for social media GIFs to share and celebrate commencement? We’ve got you covered! Need a background to spice up your presence at the conferral ceremony? This is the place!


Lawn Signs

Zoom Backgrounds

Here are six CGU-branded Zoom background designs sure to put you in the mood for celebrating.

Download any or all of these before signing on to your graduate’s school conferral ceremony. Open up your Zoom preferences and select Backgrounds & Filters. Hit the “plus sign” and upload the background(s) you’ve downloaded to your computer. Select the one you want from the images displayed and, voila! you have a spiffy new CGU background! (You can do this days in advance, if you wish.)

Social Media


As you reflect on your time at CGU, post your memories on social media and use our hashtags: #CGUGrad, #2021Flame, #CGUMemories. Don’t forget to tag @claremontgraduateuniversity and your school so we can repost your messages in the days leading up to commencement.


Use our brand-new CGU social media gifs and stickers to celebrate! Download the GIPHY app or visit CGU’s official GIPHY Channel. Not sure how to share gifs and stickers on social media? GIPHY has a great how-to guide to answer all your questions.

Commemorative Congratulatory Video

We are also producing a commemorative congratulatory video comprising faculty, staff, and graduates. This video will be played during your school’s live conferral and reception. If you would like to submit a video selfie congratulating your class, your faculty, or even yourself, follow these instructions:
1. Use your smart phone, webcam, or other recording device to record your message in landscape/horizontal orientation, please.
2. While filming, have fun! Film outside, on a mountain top, in a garden, in your regalia, anywhere – be creative!
3. Keep the message no more than 30 seconds.
4. While you film, standing and holding the phone at eye level is a best.
5. Upload your video file to this link.
6. The deadline is April 21