Frequently Asked Questions for Graduates

What is the date of Spring 2024 Commencement?

May 3, 2024 at 10am in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

What happens in the case of rain for the University Ceremony?

The Spring 2024 University Commencement Ceremony is held outdoors at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium. The event will be held as planned rain or shine unless there is severe weather such as lightning. Visit the Commencement home page or ECU website for updates.

Will there be a Live Stream for the Ceremonies?

There will be a live stream link for the University Commencement Ceremony which will be posted on the commencement website on Friday, May 3, 2024 at 10am.

There will not be a live stream or recording for the individual college recognition ceremonies unless otherwise communicated by the individual college/department.

What time should I arrive for the University Ceremony?
Gates open at 9am – but be sure to arrive no later than 9:20am to ensure you are participating in the main event processional. A map to show where to go when you arrive for the ceremony is located below.

Commencement Line Up Map

Are tickets required for the University Ceremony?

Guest tickets are not required for the university ceremony in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

Is the clear bag policy in effect for the University Ceremony?

For ease and speed of entry, the clear bag policy is strongly encouraged.  Non-clear bags may be subject to searching upon entry.

Prohibited items for the University Ceremony include but are not limited to:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Artifical Noise Makers
  • Illegal substances of any kind
  • Outside food, snacks and beverages (including coolers)
  • Poles / Sticks for Flags or Signs
  • Selfie sticks
  • Signs / Banners / Flags larger than 8.5” x 11”
  • Unauthorized Drones / Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
  • Weapons of any kind, including pocketknives

Additionally, no items can be left or stored at the gates.

Will there be any other in-person ceremonies for Spring 2024 for college or departments (e.g. College of Business / Psychology Dept.)?

ECU will host college recognition ceremonies in the afternoon and evening of May 3 and during the day on May 4 in various locations. Guest tickets are required and are limited per graduate based on venue size and graduate numbers.

Does everyone need a ticket for the college ceremony?

Yes, every person older than three years of age must have a guest ticket.  Exception – any child three years of age and under must sit on the lap of another guest and will not have their own seat.

What if I forget to pick up my tickets?

The original ticket deadline (April 19) for getting tickets has passed and any unclaimed tickets have been returned to each college / department. These colleges / departments are managing these requests individually.

Are extra guest tickets available?

Unclaimed tickets have been returned to each college / department. These colleges / departments are managing these requests individually.

SPECIAL NOTE: Selling, buying, duplicating, or trading tickets for the ceremonies is completely prohibited and may result in your tickets being revoked.

What if I am a DE-Only student?

For Distance Education only students (students who don’t take any on-campus classes and may not come to campus before the day of the ceremony) – Each college / department has communicated directly with DE-Only students.  If you have additional questions, please contact your college directly to find out the process for picking up your guest tickets.

For specific questions about your college/department process scroll above to the section entitled “Contact List by Ceremony” and click the link to your college / department.

Who Attends the College Ceremonies?

College ceremonies include undergraduate, graduate, professional and doctoral students. If the college doesn’t have multiple ceremonies listed above that means all departments in that college will attend that ceremony.

A member of our group is a person with a disability. How do we make advanced arrangements?

All faculty, staff, guests, and graduating seniors who have personal accommodation needs, should enter the stadium through Gate 8 and visit the ADA Accommodations booth across from the elevators to the Club Level. Limited seating accommodations will be provided based on availability.

If you have questions specific to accommodations for the Commencement ceremony, please visit the Accommodations page or contact DSS at

Where do I park for the University Ceremony?

For the University Commencement Ceremony, all ECU parking lots around Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium will be open and free of charge for graduate and guest parking. Carpooling for guests and graduates is strongly encouraged. Guests with valid state-issued handicapped permits or plates requiring accessible parking should park in the DMV Placard Required area between Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium and Minges Coliseum.

ECU Police and event staff will assist with parking guests and graduates. Click here for directions to Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium from outside of Greenville.

For the college ceremonies, all ECU parking lots will be open for use. Do not parking in a handicapped space without having a valid state-issued handicapped permit. The parking garage next to the student center will be open and free on May 3-4.

What if I am a double major?

For graduates earning more than one degree in the same semester, you can attend multiple ceremonies if you like. If the two ceremonies happen to be at the same time, you would just choose which one to attend. You will have guest tickets available for each ceremony you choose to attend.

Are names read during the University Ceremony?

ECU does not read the names of graduates during the university ceremonies. This is not a pandemic related situation. We simply don’t have the ability to read thousands of individual names in the university ceremonies. Only doctoral and professional student names will be read as this is a standard practice during university ceremonies. Individual names are typically read during the college ceremonies.

I have heard that names are read in ceremonies. Where did that happen and why not this spring?

The names of undergraduate and master’s degree graduate names are typically read during the 20+ college and department ceremonies, which is separate from the university ceremony. 

How do I know if I have met all the necessary academic requirements to graduate?

Review your Degree Works audit accessed through your Pirate Port account. If you have concerns with your degree audit, contact your academic advisor or contact Graduation Services at

Where do I get my cap and gown?

Dowdy Students Stores, located in the Main Campus Student Center, is East Carolina University’s official source for graduation regalia, merchandise, and apparel.

They will be open throughout graduation week. You can also still pick up caps and gowns at the store this week. Shipping for caps and gowns is no longer available. 

Commencement Hours of Operation:

  • Thursday, May 2 (7:30am – 5:00pm)
  • Friday, May 3 (8:00am – 5:00pm)
  • Saturday, May 4 (8:00am – 4:00pm)

When do I get my diploma?

Diplomas are mailed 10-12 weeks after graduation using the address provided in the graduation application submitted by the student. Click here to learn more.

What is the difference between the main university commencement ceremony and my unit recognition ceremony?

The main university commencement ceremony is where degrees are conferred by the Chancellor; individual names are not read; Your unit ceremony is coordinated and held by your college, school or department.

What size is my diploma?

Diplomas, both graduate and undergraduate, are 11”x14”.  Certificates, both graduate and undergraduate, are 8 1/2”x11”.

How do I change the address for where my diploma should be mailed?

Graduation applications cannot be updated by a student once they are submitted. Contact the Registrar’s Office ( for any updates that need to be made to the graduation application, including the address to where a diploma or certificate should be mailed.