Ceremony Details for GuestsCommencement


The Commencement Ceremony is about 2 hours long.

Outside at Hollingsworth Field

Weather permitting, Commencement will be held on Hollingsworth Field (Football Stadium), beginning at 1:45 p.m. with the procession. Graduates will process in from the north end (near the score board), walk just below stadium and up the 50 yard line.

No tickets are needed if Commencement is held outside. There is no guest limit.

When to Arrive
The gates to the stadium open at 12 p.m. It is recommended to arrive on campus no later than 1 p.m. to allow time for parking and securing a seat before the academic procession begins at 1:45 p.m.

What to Bring

  • Most seats at Hollingsworth Field are not shaded.
  • For your own comfort guests are encouraged to bring sunscreen, water bottle (complimentary water stations will be available), umbrella in case of light rain or sun, and a blanket or seat cushion.
  • Guest may bring their own chair or blanket to sit in the grass next to the stadium or on the field.
  • Only service dogs are allowed on campus.
  • Air conditioned viewing of the Commencement livestream is available in Beck Hall Room 101.

Gustavus is tobacco free, including no vaping.

Inside Due to Inclement Weather

In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will move indoors to Lund Center Arena (ice arena), where tickets will be required.

Three (3) tickets will be distributed to each senior during graduation rehearsal the day before Commencement by the Office of Marketing and Communication for admittance to Lund Center Arena. Additional seating will be available for those without tickets in Lund Center Forum (basketball court). The ceremony will be broadcast on large screens (and will be livestreamed).

When to Arrive
Doors open and tickets will be accepted in Lund Center Arena beginning at 12 p.m. 
It is recommended to arrive on campus no later than 1 p.m. to allow time for parking and securing a seat.


Signs will direct guests to “Event Parking” locations. All lots are open for public parking. Yellow curb fire lanes will be enforced.

Handicap parking is available in the Lund Center lot with valid permit. Please let the parking attendant know if you would like to park or drop off a guest.

Campus Map

Ceremony Etiquette

Commencement is a special event for all involved. In order to create a memorable occasion for guests and graduates we ask guests to adhere to the following requests:

  • Cellular phones and electronic devices are turned to silent during the ceremony.
  • Out of respect for all graduates and families, so all names being read are heard, please refrain from using whistles, blow horns, or making any noise during the reading of the names.
  • In order to allow every guest the opportunity to see each graduate, the audience is asked to remain seated during the ceremony.
  • No guests are permitted into the graduate seating area during the ceremony.
Special Needs Assistance

The campus is large for those with limited mobility. The college does not have wheelchairs to lend to all guests in need. PLEASE provide your own wheelchair for those with limited mobility.

Special needs parking (with a valid handicap permit) is available in the Lund Center lot. Drop-off areas are located near Christ Chapel, Hollingsworth Field (south end), and Lund Center.

Baccalaureate: Wheelchair seating is located on the main level of Christ Chapel for Baccalaureate services. There is one handicap restroom on the main level of Christ Chapel.

Commencement at Hollingsworth Field: It is approximately 100 yards with a slight incline from the drop off area to the seating area in Hollingsworth Field. An usher will be available with limited number of wheelchairs to help guest up the incline before the ceremony for transport only. No wheel chairs will be available after the ceremony. PLEASE bring your own wheelchair for anyone who has trouble walking.

Guests with wheelchairs are welcome to view the ceremony from the special needs-accessible reserved seating on the main entry row of the stadium. This seating is for those in a wheelchair and one person to assist them. There are a limited number of spaces in the reserved seating. There is also ground-level seating on artificial turf with access for wheelchairs on the north end of the stadium.

Air Conditioned Viewing
If a guest prefers to view the ceremony from an air conditioned venue, the ceremony will be broadcast live in Beck Hall Room 101 if the ceremony is outside.

Commencement in Lund Arena: If the ceremony is moved indoors to Lund Arena, wheelchair seating will be on the main floor of the Arena or in the overflow seating in the Lund Forum.

If you have any questions about special accommodations for hearing impaired, please contact us at 507-933-7520.