Ceremony Details

Commencement 2022 will be an in-person, outdoor ceremony at the East Campus Athletic Village (ECAV) stadium. We will also livestream the ceremony.

The ceremony will be approximately three hours long.

No backpacks or large bags will be allowed at Commencement. Small bags and purses will be permitted but are subject to a security check.

Rensselaer will provide ponchos for all graduates and guests.  We recommend guests and graduates check the local weather forecast for the day and dress accordingly. View the inclement weather plans for severe weather conditions. 

Professional pictures of each student will be taken during Commencement. Students will be provided instructions on how to purchase these photos. Pre-register today.


Graduate Eligibility & Clearance

All Rensselaer students who are eligible to graduate in May 2022, as well as August 2021 and December 2021 graduates.


Students cleared to attend the ceremony will receive a GradPass via email from Marching Order. If you cannot access your email, you may also log into rpi.marchingorder.com to retrieve your GradPass.

Graduate Preparation

Students can order a cap and gown from the Collegiate Store. Information on honors cords should be provided by the student’s school or honor society.

Rehearsal will be held on Tuesday, May 17, at ECAV. Undergraduate and graduate students are asked to attend at 1 p.m. While we do expect graduates to attend the rehearsal, we realize that people have special circumstances that may prohibit them from attending.

Graduate Arrival

No. Any device can be used to show the QR code. Please make sure the device you are using is charged and working.

All students should arrive at the Houston Field House no later than 7 a.m. for check-in. There will be signs and volunteers stationed at the lineup area to direct students to the correct location. Students will line up by school, degree, and major (alphabetical within your major).

Health and Safety Protocols

All Commencement attendees will need to wear a face mask and follow Institute COVID-19 protocols

Guests are being encouraged to test before coming to campus due to the rise in COVID-19 cases.

Ideally, this will be a PCR test done within 48 to 72 hours of the event. Alternatively, for those without access to PCR testing, a rapid/antigen/home test conducted as close to the event as possible (within 24 hours) is acceptable.

Guests who have proof of a negative test should bring proof to campus.

There will not be any COVID-19 testing of guests on campus prior to or at Commencement.

Yes. Graduates need to take an on-campus COVID-19 on Wednesday, May 18, or Thursday, May 19. Only August and December graduates who cannot attend the designated on-campus testing dates and times due to extenuating circumstances must bring documentation of a negative result from a PCR test taken 48 hours prior to Commencement. Graduates who choose an external facility and do not have results by 8 a.m. on Saturday, May 21, will not be able to attend Commencement.

Only August and December graduates who MUST utilize external PCR testing may upload results to DIAL beginning Thursday, May 19, at 8 a.m. through Friday, May 20, at noon. If graduates receive results after that time, bring them to check-in at Commencement on Saturday morning.

If you tested positive for COVID-19 since February 20, 2022, do not obtain a pre-arrival COVID-19 test as you might test positive again, despite having recovered from your illness. Instead, upload an electronic or paper document to DIAL that documents one of the following:

  • Laboratory titer report showing positive antibody evidence to COVID-19 infection
  • Laboratory report showing positive COVID-19 test
  • Note from your physician’s office documenting the COVID-19 infection

1. Sign the Commencement Community Health and Safety Agreement in the Student Health Portal by Thursday, May 12.

2. Log your daily interactions, activities, and wellness check in DIAL by 10 a.m. each day. May 2022 graduates should continue logging this information each morning and August and December 2021 graduates should begin logging this information on Wednesday, May 18.

3. Upload COVID-19 vaccination and booster documentation to DIAL by Thursday, May 12.

4. Participate in COVID-19 testing. In adherence with Rensselaer health and safety protocols, if your COVID-19 test is positive, you will not be permitted to attend or participate in the in-person Commencement ceremony.

5. Share the guest requirements with your guests.

6. Follow all Commencement health and safety protocols.

Parking & Transportation

Parking for those who are mobility-impaired will be available exclusively in the parking garage on College Avenue. No special permit is required. Accessible shuttles will take guests to the front gates of East Campus Stadium. There are no drop-off areas at ECAV. Accessible seating is located on the stadium floor. There are no special tickets required for this. Please see the ushers for assistance upon arrival.

There is no parking available at ECAV, but parking is available in all main campus parking lots. After you park, please board a campus shuttle to take you to the ceremony. Roads in the vicinity of Commencement will be accessible only via campus shuttles, which will drop guests off at the main entrance of ECAV. It is a short walk to the stadium field from the shuttle stop.

 The shuttles will run continuously from 6 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Please park in the North Lot or the parking garage. A shuttle to ECAV will be provided.

Tickets & Registration

All graduates need to confirm plans with us by noon on Friday, April 29, so we can finalize preparations for Commencement. You will receive an email with the registration link by mid-April. If you do not receive it, contact Commencement@rpi.edu as soon as possible. All students must fill out the registration information, even if you are not planning to participate.

Yes. The Commencement registration process is separate from the degree application process through the Registrar’s office.

No. In order to attend Commencement, students must register (the registration deadline is Friday, April 29).

Each graduate will receive four (4) guest tickets. There are no exceptions to this policy. Graduates should watch for an email from Marching Order about how to register for their guest tickets in mid-April.

Commencement GradPasses will be sent via email from Marching Order. If you cannot access your email, you may also log into rpi.marchingorder.com to retrieve your Grad Pass.

Each graduate will receive four tickets. 


Yes, Commencement will be livestreamed on YouTube. A link will be made available on the Commencement website prior to the ceremony.

No. Family members and friends of the graduates should watch the livestream of the ceremony from their own residence or hotel.

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