Undergraduate Commencement

This information reflects the 2014 commencement ceremony.

Accessibility for Students

If you are a student participating in the ceremony and have accessibility needs, please contact Kimberly Schumann in Disability Resources, (651) 962-6315. Please submit by April 19 to ensure availability of accommodations.

Accessible Parking

Visit the Minneapolis Convention Center's website for more information on parking.

Accessible Seating

There are designated seating areas at the ceremony for people with limited mobility. Ushers will be available to assist people with mobility impairments.


The St. Paul bookstore will be hosting a "Grad Fest" on Wednesday, April 23, and Thursday, April 24, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the bookstore atrium. Five free graduation announcements will be handed out at that time. Additional announcements can be purchased in the bookstore. Personalized announcements can be ordered by connecting to the following link or through the St. Thomas bookstore website after April 1.


Balloons are prohibited in the Minneapolis Convention Center. Please do not bring balloons into the convention center.

Candidate Attire

In keeping with the solemnity of the occasion, graduates must wear university-issued academic regalia, including cap and gown. Only university issued honor cords and medallions are approved for wear during the ceremony. No other oversized personal adornments, such as flower leis, hats, signs, ribbons, or scarves are acceptable.

The cap should be worn with the mortarboard parallel to the ground and without any additional modification to the appearance. Candidates receiving their Bachelor's degrees should wear the tassel on the right side. It is moved to the left side at the designated time.

It is recommended that personal clothing include dark pants for men, dark pants or skirts for women, and comfortable dark shoes. Jeans or flip flops are not acceptable.

Cap and Gown

The St. Paul-campus bookstore in the lower level of Murray-Herrick campus center will be hosting a "Grad Fest" on Wednesday, April 23, and Thursday, April 24, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the bookstore atrium. Caps, gowns and tassels will be distributed at that time. If you are unable to attend, you can pick up your cap, gown and tassel(s) at the St. Paul-campus bookstore Monday through Thursday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Fridays 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The week of commencement, the St. Paul-campus bookstore will distribute caps and gowns on Saturday, May 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; May 19-22 from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday, May 23 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is no charge for your cap and gown. You will need a picture ID when picking up your cap and gown.

Ceremony Schedule

Saturday, May 24, 2 p.m.

12:30 p.m. Faculty marshals report to room 102b for line up. Appropriate academic regalia is required.

12:45 p.m. Faculty marshals robed and ready to assist students.

1:00 p.m. Doors open for guests.

1:15 p.m. Graduates report to Ballroom A and B, find their name on the alpha list, then proceed to their row by 1:30 p.m.

1:30 p.m. Faculty (non-marshals) are encouraged to attend the ceremony and march in the processional to show encouragement and support to the graduates.  Gather in Room 102 A on the first level of the Minneapolis Convention Center.  An event staff member will escort you to the Ballroom for line up at 1:30 p.m. Academic regalia is required.

2 p.m. Commencement exercises begin with the academic procession. The ceremony will take place in exhibit halls C and D.

View the map to see the location of the ceremony, line-up area (Ballrooms A and B) and faculty marshal training (room 102B).

Commencement Mass

The Commencement Mass, a long-standing tradition at St. Thomas, begins at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 23, at the Cathedral of St. Paul. The cathedral is located at 239 Selby Avenue. Caps and gowns are not worn during the Mass.


You will receive your diploma when all requirements for your degree are completed. In addition, your tuition account must be paid in full and, if requested, you must complete a Perkins Loan exit interview. Your diploma will be mailed to you approximately eight weeks after all requirements are verified as completed.

All seniors who purchase a  diploma frame during "Grad Fest" on Wednesday, April 23, and Thursday, April 24, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. will receive a 10% discount . Family and friends can pre-order a diploma frame and can have their students pick the frame up in the St. Paul Bookstore to avoid paying shipping costs. The size of all under grad diplomas is 8.5x11 inches.

To view all of the diploma frames available for purchase, visit the University of St. Thomas' Bookstore website.

Honor Cords, Ribbons and Medallions

Students receiving Latin honors, Aquinas Scholars cords and Delta Epsilon Sigma cords will be notified by email from Academic Affairs about pick-up dates prior to spring break.

Aquinas Scholars cords and certificates will be distributed at the Aquinas Scholars Honors Convocation on Tuesday, May 6. Invitations will be sent by email to eligible students prior to spring break. Please contact Kathy Tischler at ktischler@stthomas.edu if you have any questions regarding the distribution.

Latin honors ribbons, medallions and Delta Epsilon Sigma cords will be distributed in Aquinas Hall, suite 106, on the following dates and times:

  • Monday, May 19, Study Day – 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 20 – 8:30 a.m.-5:45 p.m.
  • Wednesday, May 21 – 8:30 a.m.- 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 22 – 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.

All other honors should be collected from the sponsoring department or student organization.  Please contact that department or organization directly for pick-up times.


Please visit the Minneapolis Convention Center's website for information on nearby hotels.

Visitors to the University of St. Thomas campuses and events receive a discounted rate at area hotels. The rates are established through arrangements with the university and a consortium of colleges in the Twin Cities.  Please review the hotels offering the rates below and follow the instructions for receiving the special rates.

Airport/Mall of America

Courtyard by Marriott Minneapolis/Bloomington
7800 Bloomington Ave S
Bloomington MN 55425
952 876-0100
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

Country Inn & Suites Bloomington at Mall of America
2221 Killebrew Drive
Bloomington MN 55425
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

Downtown St. Paul

Holiday Inn St. Paul Downtown
175 W 7th St
St Paul MN 55102
651 225-1515
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

Embassy Suites Hotel
175 E. 10th St
St. Paul MN 55101
651 224-5400 or 1-800-embassy (362-2779)
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

The Saint Paul Hotel
350 Market St
St. Paul MN 55102
651 292-9292 or 1-800 292-9292
Ask for ACTC Rate
Visit Site
Enter the Rate/Corporate ID Code of ACTC

Downtown Minneapolis

Millennium Hotel Minneapolis
1313 Nicollet Mall
Minneapolis MN 55403
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

Double Tree Guest Suites
1101 LaSalle Ave
Minneapolis MN 55403
800 245-8011 or 612 332-6800
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

Holiday Inn Express Minneapolis Convention Center
225 S. 11th St.
Minneapolis MN 55403
800 870-0114 or 612 341-3300
Ask for University of St. Thomas Rate
Reserve Online (With Discount)

Live Streaming Video

Live streaming video will be available during the ceremonies.


Please visit the Minneapolis Convention Center's website for maps and directions.


Students and faculty members should not leave valuables during lineup.

Students and faculty should wear comfortable shoes with a low heel. You will be walking a distance during the procession.

We request that you do not bring items into the convention center that might distract from the dignity of the ceremony, or create any action that interferes with the ceremony. Thank you for demonstrating your support and giving the ceremony the dignity and honor that it richly deserves.

Important Note: Possession or consumption of alcohol is strictly prohibited during the procession and ceremony.

Newspaper Announcements of Graduates

Newspaper announcements of graduates are issued for all verified undergraduate and graduate students. Please note that the list of verified students is not available until approximately one month after the end of a term. In addition, it can take two to three weeks to process and mail the list. Publication is at the discretion of local newspapers. If you have questions regarding the releases, please contact Kelly Engebretson at hail9100@stthomas.edu.


Please notify Barbara Rath at barath@stthomas.edu or (651) 962-6708 if you do not plan to attend the ceremony.


Please visit the Minneapolis Convention Center's website for more information about parking.

Participation List

Please click here‌ to view the participation list. If your name does not appear on the list, please review your degree evaluation on MURPHY Online and contact your advisor for additional assistance.


A professional photographer from GradImages will take your picture as you receive your diploma. Proofs will be sent to your permanent address and via email within three to five days after the ceremony. There is no obligation to purchase. Pictures can be ordered online, by phone or by mail. GradImages can be contacted at (800) 261-2576 or via email at www.gradimages.com.

Picture Taking

Picture-taking on or near the stage is prohibited.

Senior Class Gift

All seniors are invited to participate in the Senior Class Gift campaign this spring by supporting the Class of 2014 Endowed Scholarship. The criteria, as determined by the senior class, will support future middle-income students at St. Thomas.

The Senior Class Gift has been a tradition at UST for more than 30 years. Each year’s graduating class presents a gift in the form of a scholarship to the university president at the commencement ceremony in May.

Beginning in early April, seniors are invited to participate by giving any amount towards the scholarship. Participating seniors will receive a lapel pin to be worn at commencement.

For more information, visit Senior Class Gift or email Jonna Schnettler at jmschnettler@stthomas.edu.  


There will be free shuttle buses for students participating in the commencement ceremony. They will leave from outside of Flynn Hall on the north end of the St. Paul campus at 12:30 and 12:45 p.m. Free parking will be available in Morrison Ramp R-1 and R-2 and Lot A.  Shuttles will drop off at the Minneapolis Convention Center.  They will return to the St. Paul campus leaving the convention center after the ceremony at 4:45 and 5 p.m.


Daniel Buettner will be the commencement speaker. He is an American explorer, educator, author, public speaker and co-producer of an Emmy Award-winning documentary who holds three world records for endurance bicycling.  He is the founder of the online Quest Network, Inc., which provides opportunities for students to interactively engage with explorers on expedition.  Mr. Buettner is a 1983 St. Thomas alumnus and received the Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2008.


Tassels will be handed out when students pick up their caps and gowns from the bookstore. The tassel color is determined by a student’s major(s). The colors are listed below. Tassels are worn on the right side of the mortarboard.

White: arts and letters, humanities, Catholic studies
Scarlet: theology, peace and justice
Dark blue: philosophy
Golden yellow: science
Drab: business
Light blue: education
Salmon pink: public health
Orange: engineering
Crimson: journalism
Citron: social work
Brown: fine arts
Pink: music
Sage green: physical education
Copper: economics

Text Messages

Students and families have the opportunity to receive text messages with information about the commencement ceremony. This is a no-reply text messaging system. Recipients will not receive a response if they reply directly to these messages. Students, text TASSEL 14 to 80077. Family members, text TASSEL FAMILY to 80077.

SMS subscription service. Up to 2msg/mo. Msg&Data Rates May Apply. Text STOP to 80077 to STOP. Full terms: mGive.com/E  Privacy Policy: mGive.org/P


No tickets are required for this ceremony. Unlimited seating.

Wheelchair Rental

The university does not provide wheelchairs. Wheelchairs and motorized scooters are available to rent from the Minneapolis Convention Center.  Wheelchairs and scooters should be reserved in advance.  Go to www.themobilitshop.com or call 888-404-5554 to reserve and pay for the item.  Wheelchairs are $20 per day and scooters are $50 per day.  You will need to bring your email confirmation and go to the Guest Services and Security department for pick up.