December Commencement Convocation

December Graduation

Information for Graduation Candidates

Rotunda Recessional for Undergraduate Candidates

Friday, December 14, 2018 
Line up starts at 4:45 p.m. at the Historic Main Quadrangle (by the flagpole)


Undergraduate candidates wear full official SMU regalia (cap, gown, red SMU stole and tassel) and gather at 4:45 p.m., where they are greeted by the Student Body President and Chief Marshal of Academic Ceremonies. After brief remarks, students are lead through the front doors of Dallas Hall for a walk through the Rotunda, and then exit through the back. This is a symbolic departure from campus as well as a welcome to the SMU Alumni family.  Please note that adornments are not permitted (i.e. honor cords, pins, sashes, leis, etc.).   

You do not need to RSVP for this event. Hot cider will be served, and family and friends are invited to come watch the candidates walk from the Historic Main Quadrangle to Dallas Hall.   

December Commencement

Saturday, December 15, 2018 at 9:30 a.m. 
Moody Coliseum 
3009 Binkley Avenue 
Dallas, Texas 75205

Security Screening and Prohibited Items

Please allow ample time for screening. All candidates/guests are screened with a hand wand; all bags are checked. 

Do not bring any of the following prohibited items, including but not limited to, animals (except licensed service animals), backpacks, banners, binocular cases, briefcases, camera bags, cans, cinch bags, computer bags, coolers, diaper bags, fanny packs, firearms, flags, glass items, guns, inflated balloons, knives of any size and type, laser pointers, luggage, noisemakers, purses larger than a small clutch, radios, seat cushions with zippers, pockets or compartments, selfie sticks, signs, stun guns, throwing objects, umbrellas (unless threat of rain or raining), and weapons. 

For guests, all bags must be clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and may not exceed 12 X 6 X12 inches.  Bags may be one-gallon clear plastic resealable storage bags.  Small clutch purses with or without straps, no larger than 8.5 X 5.5 inches, are permitted.  The clutch does not have to be clear and may be carried separately or within an approved plastic bag.  Items that are medically necessary are evaluated individually.   

Candidates are not allowed to bring clear bags, food or drinks into Moody and Dedman Center.  The small clutch is permissible.

Please leave personal belongings at home or in your car, as there is nowhere to store these items during the ceremony. We cannot secure anything left behind. The building is not accessible after the event.

Graduation is a time of celebration with family and friends, but candidates are reminded that appropriate behavior and decorum is expected. Any student not acting appropriately will be asked to leave the ceremony.


Candidates line up in Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports. You must have regalia to be admitted. No honor cords, pins, or other adornments are worn to this ceremony. Students without regalia or with altered mortarboards will be directed to the SMU Bookstore to rent a cap and gown. Doors open at 8:00 a.m., groups begin forming at 8:45 a.m., and doors will close at 9:40 a.m. Arrive early to avoid graduation day traffic.

Signs will be posted and faculty marshals will be on duty to help you assemble by school and degree type. Faculty Marshals start leading the student procession at 9:20 a.m.

Leave bags, purses, coats, and other personal belongings at home or in your car. There will be nowhere to store these items during the ceremony. We can not secure anything left inside Dedman, and the building will not be accessible after the event.  

Guests, for more information please go to Guest Information.

Guest Passes

Candidates are not limited on the number of guests at December Commencement in Moody Coliseum, and passes are not required. Seating in Moody Coliseum is not guaranteed and is on a first come basis. Saving seats is not permitted. If the venue reaches capacity, guests will be directed to a simulcast location. The ceremony is a lengthy and formal event not suitable for infants or young children. The ceremony will also be live streamed at

Guests, for more information please go to Guest Information.

Announcements and Invitations

Personalized invitations and announcements may be ordered at the SMU Bookstore or directly from

These announcements and invitations contain the name and degree of the candidate. For additional information, please call the SMU Bookstore at 214-768-2435.

Grad Fair

The Grad Fair will be held in rooms 108, 110 & 112 of the Laura Lee Blanton Building on:

Friday, October 19 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

The following companies will have representatives available at the Grad Fair to help you get ready for graduation:

Academic Ceremonies Receive ceremony instructions and guest information
SMU Bookstore Order a diploma frame 
Balfour Order your SMU Ring
Herff Jones Order regalia, invitations, and announcements
Flash Photography

Take professional cap & gown photographs

Hegi Family Career Development Center  Learn about career services available to you now and as an alumni
Shout Outs Record a video thank-you message for the Moody jumbotron

Academic Regalia


Regalia Instructions

All participating candidates must wear SMU academic regalia. Pre-ordered regalia will be available for pickup at the SMU Bookstore beginning Saturday, December 8th. Regalia orders placed at the SMU Bookstore after the Herff Jones online deadline of November 13th has passed will be charged a $10.00 late regalia order fee.

Per University administration, honor ribbons, pins, cords, sashes, medals, flowers, stoles (other than part of the official SMU regalia), decorated mortarboards and other adornments may not be worn during the ceremony. Adornments are confiscated and mortarboards are replaced at the student's expense.  Students without regalia or with altered mortarboards will be directed to the SMU Bookstore to rent a new cap and/or gown.

  • Baccalaureate Candidates - Appropriate attire includes mortarboard with tassel, undergraduate robe, and stole of gratitude
  • Post Baccalaureate Candidates - Appropriate attire for Master's candidates includes mortarboard with tassel, master's robe, and hood for the degree to be received
  • Ph.D. and D.E. candidates - Appropriate attire includes a tam with tassel and doctoral robe. Candidates will be will be given hoods during the ceremony.The hood is a gift from the University to the students who attend the Saturday morning ceremony.


Acquiring Regalia

Orders for academic regalia must be placed at the Grad Fair or through the Herff Jones website by November 13th.  Orders placed at the SMU Bookstore after this date will be charged a $10.00 late regalia order fee.  Regalia is available for pickup from the SMU Bookstore beginning December 8th.

Students are responsible for checking that they have received all needed items and verifying that the discipline color is correct when picking up their order. Review your Degree Progress Report and the Inventory of Academic Programs if you do not know your degree type or discipline color. 

If you are a Doctoral candidate and unsure if you are graduating in December, please place an order. If you do not need the regalia, you will be reimbursed the rental fee.


Returning Regalia

All rented gowns and hoods must be returned to the SMU Bookstore by 5:00 p.m. on the Sunday after commencement. A $10.00 per day late fee is applied starting Monday.

All graduates may keep their cap and tassel and undergraduates may keep their stole. Ph.D. and D.E. candidates given a hood during the ceremony may keep it as a gift from the University.


Paying for Regalia

Payment will be made online during the ordering process. 

If you wish to purchase your regalia, please contact Didi Archilla at the SMU Bookstore at 214-768-2435 to acquire a custom regalia order form and retail rates. Custom regalia takes approximately 8 weeks to arrive after an order has been placed.

SMU Ring and Fall Ring Ceremony

The SMU Ring is a tangible and recognizable symbol of pride in SMU and its history. It is a link with classmates, friends, and alumni spread all over the world, as well as a reminder of accomplishments and experiences during college years. Students wear the ring with the seal facing them until the granting of degrees at Commencement. After graduation the ring is worn with the seal facing outward to symbolize that the graduate is now ready to face the world!

It can be purchased at the Grad Fair, online at, or by calling 1-800-BALFOUR.


Arrangements have been made with a professional photographer to take pictures of candidates as they cross the stage. If you have questions concerning photographs, please contact Flash Photography at 214-443-9393, Monday through Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Preservation Frames

You will have an opportunity to purchase a diploma preservation frame from the Michael Sutter Company after commencement. Each diploma preservation frame order will include a complimentary diploma. Please visit to view the variety of frames available. All graduates will receive an email from the Michael Sutter Company after commencement with information on how to order a diploma frame.

Diplomas and Transcripts

Transcripts with degrees posted will be available for pickup on Tuesday, January 9, 2018 at 2:00 pm.

Diplomas will be mailed to the Home or Diploma address you have listed in my.SMU on or after Monday, January 29, 2018.

Please Note: Candidates who owe money to the University may participate in the commencement ceremony, but diplomas and transcripts will be held until accounts are cleared. For questions regarding your account, call 214-768-3417

Ceremony Livestream

There will be a livestream of December Commencement for guests who are unable to attend the ceremony. Please visit