The Catholic University of America

Commencement 2019 Information

Institutes & Special Programs Ceremony

Commencement Day
Information for Graduates

Contact for more information

General Information
Special Needs Seating
• Class Picture Order Form
• Diploma Frame Order Form 
• Photograph Receiving Diploma 
• Photograph Individual Portrait 
• Graduation Video Form

Cap and Gown Orders!


UPDATE - - Cap and Gowns – If you have not yet ordered your academic regalia, please do so as soon as possible!

CUA 2019 Graduation Fair, Representatives from Oak Hall Cap and Gown will be at the University’s Grad Fair for measuring and sales of academic regalia and graduation announcements. 

Cap and Gowns can also be ordered online here:    
Note that all purchases made online will require pick-up at the University Bookstore.
All graduates are required, according to University policy, to attend the ceremony and wear academic regalia. Graduating students who are members of the United States Armed Services are allowed to wear dress uniform in lieu of academic apparel. 

UPDATE - - Tuesday, April 23

Champagne Toast to the Class of 2019
Our annual toast honoring the Class of 2019 will take place at 5:30 p.m. in the Keelty Atrium.

UPDATE - - Saturday, May 18

A Night at Nat's Park (7:15 p.m.)
The Graduation Committee presents A Night at Nat's Park for the Washington Nationals v. Chicago Cubs game @ 7:15 pm. Tickets are $18. For more information, contact Kevin O’Connell, or Harrison Richards,


Thursday, May 23

Institutes and Special Programs Certificate Ceremony (2:00 p.m.)
Byron Auditorium, Law School
A certificate presentation ceremony for students in the Comparative and International Law Institute, the Law and Public Policy Program, the Law and Technology Institute, and the Securities Law Program will take place at 2 p.m., with a reception to follow.   For further information, please call the Office of Institutes and Special Programs (319-6081) or email Constantia Dedoulis at

Mass (4:30 p.m.)
St. Vincent’s Chapel, John McCormack Road
A Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated for the graduates at 4:30 p.m. at St. Vincent’s Chapel.  All graduates are invited to attend with family and friends.  Graduates should sit with their families and academic apparel should not be worn to the Mass. If you have a family member who is a Roman Catholic priest and interested in concelebrating the Mass, please contact the Office of Student Life and Special Events or email Joan Vorrasi at no later than May 1.
Mass Parking: The University garage adjacent to the law school will be open for those attending Mass.
UPDATE - - Class of 2019 Friends and Family Celebration (6:00 p.m.)
Father O'Connell Hall (CUA campus)
The Graduation Committee presents the Class of 2019 Friends and Family Celebration
Ticket Price: $19.00 per person (kids under 10 free)
This event will feature a buffet dinner for Graduates, Friends and Family. Come celebrate the eve of your graduation, at what promises to be a fun filled evening! The Graduation Committee will be sending out an email soon with information on cost and how to purchase tickets.

Friday, May 24 – Law School Commencement

Graduates report to the Byron Auditorium (9:30 a.m.)
On graduation day, graduates report to the Byron Auditorium at 9:30 a.m., wearing academic regalia. You will receive important instructions and join your classmates for the Class of 2019 before lining up for the academic procession to the Basilica.

Commencement Ceremony (11:00 a.m.)
Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
Seating for guests attending our commencement will begin after 9:30 a.m.  The academic procession will enter the Shrine at 10:50 a.m. 
Reception — approximately 12:45 p.m., University Lawn
Immediately following the Commencement ceremony, Dean Jefferson and the Faculty will host a reception for graduates, families and friends on the lawn.  In case of inclement weather, the reception will be moved indoors.
**The Class of 2019 Graduation Committee is planning a number of events the week prior to Commencement. Please watch for notices from the Committee and updates on this website regarding these activities.

General Information

All graduates are required to attend the ceremony. If you cannot attend, you are required to write a letter to the Provost, Dr. Andrew Abela, requesting permission to be excused.  The letter should indicate the address to which the University Registrar should mail your diploma, and should be sent to Dr. Abela at 103 McMahon Hall, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.  20064.  Please send a copy of this letter to Dean Stuart Schept, Registrar, Suite 343, Law School.
Special Needs Seating
We will reserve seats for guests with disabilities.  All special needs tickets must be reserved through the Office of Student Life and Special Events in advance.  The tickets can be picked up, beginning on April 15th from Suite 341; or if you prefer, we can mail them to your home.  Note that the wheelchair entrance is located at the front entrance to the Shrine. 

If you have any questions or concerns about disability seating or other accommodations, please call us at (202) 319-6126, or email Michele Webster at
The number of guests that you may invite to the ceremony is unlimited.  Although there will be room for all guests of law school graduates at the ceremony, we urge you to have your family arrive early at the Shrine.  We will begin seating guests after 9:30 a.m.

Parking and Shuttle Bus Service  
Parking will be available in the university garage adjacent to the law school on Thursday for the Institutes ceremony and reception and the Mass at St. Vincent’s Chapel 
On Friday, parking will be available in the garage, the university parking lots adjacent to the Shrine and the Shrine parking lot on Harewood Road and Michigan Avenue. Shuttle buses will run from the front entrance of the Law School to and from the Shrine before and after Commencement for those who wish to park in the Law School garage or are using Metro.
Class Photo, Individual Pictures, and Video
Panoramic Visions is a local photography company which specializes in large group events. Order forms for purchasing the class photo, individual photos and the commencement video will be posted on this site in early April. 
The commencement ceremony will be Webcast and will be available for viewing online after 6 p.m. on Friday, May 24. There will be a link on our Web page, and the link will remain live through mid-August. 

Contact us:

Office of Student Life and Special Events, Suite 341
Joan Vorrasi:
Emily Sobieski:
Michele Webster: