Winter 2014 Commencement Ceremonies

From: Philip Rous, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

It is my pleasure to invite you to participate in UMBC’s winter 2014 Commencement Ceremonies. We will have two ceremonies this December in the Retriever Activities Center (RAC).

  • Graduate Commencement will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, December 17 in the RAC
  • Undergraduate Commencement will be held at 10 a.m. on Thursday, December 18 in the RAC

These commencement ceremonies are important events in the life of our scholarly community where we come together to celebrate the accomplishments of our students and recognize the outstanding commitment of our faculty and staff to their success. These events mean a great deal to our graduating students, their parents and guests. I hope you will make a special effort to attend these events, to share this special time with our students and join in our community’s celebration of academic achievement.

RSVP PROCESS: There is a single web-based response form for faculty and staff to respond –whether you rent, purchase, or already own your regalia. The address is

ORDERING REGALIA: As in the past, UMBC will subsidize the rental of academic regalia for faculty and administrative and associate staff. Please order your regalia by October 26, 2014. After that date, you will be asked to pay a late charge of $25. Please note that it will not be possible to order regalia after December 6. Even if there is only a slight chance that you will attend Commencement, you should order regalia. It is easier for the Bookstore to return unused gowns and hoods then it is to place a late order and not get delivery on time. Regalia will be ready for pick-up in the Bookstore beginning December 8 through December 12. (Regalia will not be available for pick-up at the RAC.) Please use the online Commencement RSVP form at to place your order. If you have any questions, please call Gail Dupree at the Bookstore, x 53807.

RSVP FOR MARCHING IN THE PROCESSION: Even if you do not order regalia, we need to know whether you intend to march in the Commencement procession, so that appropriate seating arrangements can be made. Please give your RSVP on the website response form for Commencement by December 8, 2014.

Volunteers Needed for Spring Commencement Ceremonies (5/22 & 5/23)

It’s the time of the year when we ask for your help with May Commencements!  This year, the Undergraduate ceremony at the 1st Mariner Arena will be held on Thursday, May 23.

To volunteer, click on the link, select “Undergraduate Ceremony” and register.  You will see a brief description of the jobs available and the number of staff needed. If you prefer a particular job, sign up now before they are filled. You will receive a confirmation e-mail after you submit your selection.

Volunteer training will take place on Tuesday, May 21 at 2 pm in the RAC.Transportation will be provided to the Arena on the day of commencement with the bus leaving Administration Drive at 9:30 a.m. and returning 30 minutes after the ceremony.

Volunteers are also needed to help with the Graduate School Ceremony scheduled for Wednesday, May 22 at 10:00 am in the RAC.  You may use the same link as above and just select “Graduate Ceremony”.

If you have questions regarding the Undergraduate ceremony, contact Erin Johnson at or ext. 5-5897.  For questions regarding the Graduate School ceremony, contact Lisa Portis Morgan at or ext. 5-8142.

To celebrate your efforts, we will once again host a Commencement Volunteer Thank You in January for those of you who assist with the May and/or December ceremony.  Look for further information in the late Fall.

Seeking Commencement Volunteers for 12/20 and 12/21

UPDATE (12/17): If you would still like to volunteer for Undergraduate Commencement (Friday, December 21), please contact Erin Johnson at For Graduate Commencement (Thursday, December 20), please contact Lisa Morgan at

UMBC is seeking staff members to assist with both Graduate Commencement (Thursday, December 20) and Undergraduate Commencement (Friday, December 21). Many volunteers are needed to ensure that the ceremonies run smoothly. Roles are first-come-first served and volunteers can select from several different options, such as helping with the faculty/staff line-up, student line-up, serving as a greeter or usher, and assisting guests with special needs.

Help make winter commencement a day to remember for UMBC grads.

UMBC Commencement 2009 (photo by Jim Lord)

Matt Courson ’11, Political Science, on CBS Baltimore

After an ATV accident in 2006, Matt Courson was paralyzed from the waist down and given a 1% chance of walking again. Thanks to aggressive physical therapy at the Kennedy Krieger Institute’s International Center for Spinal Cord Injury, he was able to walk across the stage to receive his UMBC diploma just five years later—a moment captured by the Baltimore Sun and featured on CNN’s “Human Factor.”

Courson attended a celebration marking the 75th anniversary of the Kennedy Krieger Institute this week. He told CBS News, “This place has done so much for me, the therapists, the doctors…they are family to me and I definitely hold a special place for Kennedy Krieger in my heart.”

2012 May Commencement Ceremonies

From Philip Rous, Provost Designate and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

President Hrabowski and I cordially invite you to participate in the Commencement Ceremonies of the Undergraduate and Graduate School Programs. Doctoral and Master’s degrees will be conferred on Friday, May 18, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. in the UMBC Retriever Activities Center (RAC).  Baccalaureate degrees will be conferred on Monday, May 21, 2012 at 1:00 p.m. at the 1st Mariner Arena.  As you know, these events mean a great deal to our students, their parents, and guests, so I hope you will make a special effort to share in their celebrations. You are welcome to participate in both ceremonies.  




Faculty and staff who still want to order regalia may do so through May 9, with a late fee of $25.  Regalia cannot be ordered after May 9.


Regalia will be available for pick-up Wednesday, May 9, through Wednesday, May 16.   Faculty and staff must pick up regalia at the Bookstore during this period. If you have any questions, please call Gail Dupree at the Bookstore, at x 53904. 




LINE UPFaculty/staff line up will be on court 1, in the multi-purpose gym (except mentors of Doctoral students, see below).  Please enter the RAC at the main entrance.   Line up will be directly downstairs, where light refreshments will be available. Faculty and staff may leave their belongings in this area, which will be monitored by a Student Marshal.


Mentors of graduating doctoral students are asked to line up with their students in the basement of the Sondheim Building, not in the multi-purpose RAC gym.


The procession begins promptly at 9:50 a.m.


R.S.V.P.: If you have not already done so, please be sure to R.S.V.P. if you plan to participate in the procession.  For planning and seating purposes, we need the name of each faculty member who will process and any special mobility needs you may have. Click on this link to reply: to respond by Wednesday, May 9, 2012. 



LUNCH AND BUSES: You are invited for lunch at 11:00 a.m. at the 1st Mariner Arena

before the Undergraduate Commencement.  Bus transportation from UMBC to the Arena will also be provided, leaving at 10:30 a.m. for lunch and 11:30 a.m. for ceremony only.


LINE UP For the Undergraduate Ceremony, faculty and staff should line up at 12:15 p.m. at the 1st Mariner Arena.  The procession begins promptly at 12:30.


R.S.V.P.:  If you have not already done so, please be sure to R.S.V.P. by Wednesday, May 9, 2012, if you plan to participate in the procession for the Undergraduate ceremony.    Click on this link to reply: Following is the information we need for planning and seating purposes.

  • Your name, whether you will come for lunch, and, if you need a bus to the Arena, whether you want the 10:30 or 11:30 a.m. bus.  You will need the 10:30 bus if you come for lunch. 
  • Please let us know if you have any special mobility needs.  The 10:30 bus will be equipped with a lift.


For additional information about the 2012 May Commencement Ceremonies, please visit the Commencement website: We look forward to your participation in the Ceremonies.

Regalia for Commencement

From Philip Rous, Provost Designate and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

President Hrabowski and I are pleased by the strong participation of faculty and staff expected at the Commencement ceremonies on May 18 and 21.

Please note that if you would still like to order regalia to march in either procession, you may do so without charge through April 1. A $25 late fee on all orders takes effect on April 2. The last day to order regalia is May 9. The Bookstore will be unable to accept regalia orders after this date.

Click on this link to reply: If you have questions, please call Gail Dupree at the Bookstore, ext. 5-3807.

We look forward to seeing you at the Commencement ceremonies.