Frequently Asked Questions


When is Commencement?

Class of 2020 - Sunday, May 16, 2021
Class of 2021 - Saturday, May 15, 2021
May 21, 2022
May 27, 2023
May 25, 2024
May 24, 2025

The information below does not apply to the ceremonies for the class of 2020 and 2021, which have restrictions due to COVID-19.

Where and what time is Commencement?

Weather permitting, Commencement will be held at Hollingsworth Field (Football Stadium), beginning at 1:45 p.m., with the procession.

In the event of inclement weather, Commencement will be held in Lund Center Arena at 2 p.m. (overflow seating is available in Lund Center Forum -- no ticket is required for the overflow seating.) The ceremony will last approximately two hours.

As a parent, when will I formally hear about Commencement Weekend festivities?

A special postcard to the parent(s) of seniors who are eligible to graduate will be sent in February directing families to this website. 

What if my student is studying abroad or has graduated early?

Information for Commencement will be sent to the family or the forwarding address on record.

Will I/we need tickets for Commencement / Baccalaureate?

Tickets are not required if the Commencement ceremony is held outdoors.
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 the week before Commencment from the Office of Marketing and Communication for admittance to Lund Center Arena. The number of tickets allocated is based on the number of graduates and the seating capacity of the Arena.

What happens if it rains on Commencement?

The decision as to whether the exercises will be held indoors or outdoors will be announced by 10:30 a.m. at the second Baccalaureate service. It will also be announced on the Gustavus website. If weather conditions force the ceremony inside, it will be held in Lund Center Arena (hockey arena). The ceremony will start at 2 p.m. Due to space restrictions in Lund Arena, each senior will be issued three tickets for the Commencement exercises. Additional family and guests may be accommodated in the Lund Forum (basketball court), where the ceremony will be broadcast on a large screen. 

When and where is Baccalaureate?

The College will hold two Baccalaureate Services in Christ Chapel to accommodate anticipated attendance at 9 a.m. and at 10:30 a.m. 

What if I need more Indoor Commencement tickets?

We are sorry, but there are no extra tickets, so we suggest that you contact other graduating students who may not need their tickets. Additional guests are welcome to sit in overflow seating in the Lund Center Forum.

Where does my student get a cap and gown?

Students will be notified about a special day in April called “Grad Finale.” This is a time when seniors receive a cap and gown (for no additional charge), and may order graduation announcements, and class rings. If your student is not available this day, these items may be picked up starting April 20 during regular business hours at the Book Mark. 

When, where, and from whom do I order my invitations, thank-you cards, and class ring?

Invitations, thank-you cards, and class rings can be ordered through the Book Mark. Each student will receive information from the Book Mark in April. Please direct any questions regarding the ordering of these items to the Book Mark at 507-933-7587

Where should I sit to see my graduate?

The graduates line up and sit in alphabetical order. Last names starting with A through the begining of the Ls are on the left side (when looking at the stage) wtih the remaining graduates on the right half of the seats.
Graduates walk across the stage from right to left (when looking at the stage).

Does the College offer special accommodations for guests with disabilities?

  • People with limited mobility should plan to arrive at least 1 hour before the start of their activity to allow time for parking and walking to their destination.
  • People with limited mobility are encouraged to provide their own wheelchair for the day, this may mean renting a wheelchair.
  • Guest may be dropped off close to the stadium or at a turn around by a building, yet it still is far to walk.
  • Any guest coming with limited mobility should have a person with them to help as needed.
  • Since the college is hosting approximately 5,000 people for Commencement there are limited staff and equipment resources for helping individuals.
  • Accessible seating is available in a reserved section in the football stadium.
    • Family members may sit in front of the guest needing the special seating in the bleachers. 
    • This is reserved for those in wheelchairs or using walkers. Guests who are not able to climb bleachers are encouraged to arrive early for ground-level seating. 
  • If the ceremony is inside, there is an elevator in Lund Center or seating on the main floor in the Arena and in overflow in the Forum.
  • The Commencement program is linked to the website the day before the event.

What do I need to know about photographing or videotaping my graduate?

As a courtesy to the graduates and all in attendance, we ask that you remain outside of the ceremonial area during Commencement exercises. Picture-taking opportunities with the faculty will be available after the ceremony at receptions outside on Eckman Mall, or the Campus Center if inclement weather. 

Professional photos will be available from Grad Images (800-261-2576).

Live Stream of Ceremony
The ceremony will be live streamed and archived. Visit to watch the live stream and archive of the ceremony.

In cooperation with Gustavus Adolphus College, GradImages will photograph the Commencement ceremonies. GradImages  will mail color photograph proofs and information to each family. Your graduates can preregister their email,and friends and family email addresses and GradImages will contact them just as soon as their photos are available for online viewing and ordering. Grad Images Customer Service number is 1-800-261-2576.