Spring Commencement 2023

Important Commencement Update

January 11, 2023

Dear Class of 2023,

Congratulations on your upcoming graduation!

As we prepare to celebrate your accomplishments, we would like to share the following important announcement about upcoming university commencement ceremonies.

Beginning in the 2023-24 academic year, Cal Poly will no longer host Fall Commencement and will instead celebrate all graduates at Spring Commencement in Spanos Stadium.

The elimination of Fall Commencement allows all graduates to enjoy an equitable graduation experience, including participation in Cultural Commencement ceremonies and college and department celebrations, all of which only take place in spring quarter. It also allows the university to enhance the overall ceremony experience in Spanos Stadium for all graduates and guests to enjoy.

All graduates will continue to be able to claim up to ten guest tickets for each college commencement ceremony.

We look forward to celebrating all members of the Class of 2023 in Spanos Stadium this June 17-18. For more information about Spring Commencement, please visit commencement.calpoly.edu

Go Mustangs!

Cal Poly Commencement Office

College Commencement Ceremonies

Alex G. Spanos Stadium

Saturday, June 17, 2023

  • 8:30 a.m. - Orfalea College of Business
  • 12:30 p.m. - College of Science and Mathematics
  • 4:30 p.m. - College of Liberal Arts

Sunday, June 18, 2023

  • 8:30 a.m. - College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences
  • 12:30 p.m. - College of Architecture and Environmental Design
  • 4:30 p.m. - College of Engineering

Additional details coming soon.


Guest Tickets

Graduates will receive ceremony tickets in spring quarter. Each graduate can claim up to 10 guest tickets. Tickets will be sent to Cal Poly email addresses. 

  • Tickets are required for guest entrance into the ceremony and can be presented in either printed form or on mobile devices.
  • Each ticket is unique and will be scanned upon entry. Do not duplicate tickets. Individuals with tickets obtained from unauthorized sources may be denied admission.
  • Children two years and under who are able to sit on a family member's lap do not need a ticket.
  • Graduates are responsible for claiming tickets and distributing them to guests prior to the ceremony.
  • Graduates do not need a ticket.
  • Due to capacity limitations, graduates cannot request additional tickets.

Regalia, Gifts and Gear

Caps, gowns, tassels, sashes and master's hoods will be available to order in spring quarter. Regalia is required to participate in commencement.


Graduate and Guest Information

Learn about important day-of details, instructions and policies for the college ceremonies.

Graduate Arrival

  • Graduates should arrive at Spanos Stadium 90 minutes before their ceremony start time.
  • Please arrive at the graduate entrance area located on the east side of Spanos Stadium (accessible via Mustang Way/South Perimeter Road).
  • Do not arrive wearing your regalia (caps are OK) — robes must be draped over your arm until you reach the graduate regalia robing area. Regalia is required to participate.
  • Graduates will be seated on a first-come, first-served basis. If you want to sit with friends, please arrive together as holding seats will not be permitted. Front rows are reserved for master's students.
  • Each graduate will receive water and a small snack. Outside food or beverages are not allowed (factory-sealed plastic bottles and empty reusable bottles are OK). All outside containers will be emptied upon arrival, regardless of their content.

Guest Arrival/Stadium Information

  • Stadium gates open one hour before the ceremony for guests.
  • Guests can enter Spanos Stadium from each gate.
  • Accessible seating is located throughout the stadium. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis for guests with mobility impairments and one companion.
  • Outside food or beverages are not allowed (factory-sealed plastic bottles and empty reusable bottles are OK). All outside containers will be emptied upon arrival, regardless of their content.
  • Hydration stations are available to refill bottles during the ceremony.
  • Restrooms are located underneath the bleachers. 
  • Ceremonies will be live-streamed with closed captioning.
  • Medical personnel are located on the south side of the field.
  • COVID-19 testing or vaccination status is not required.

Parking, Transportation and Accessibility

Please note that campus parking will be highly impacted throughout commencement weekend. Consider using alternative methods of transportation such as SLO Transit, Uber, Lyft, carpooling or biking to avoid delays.

  • Enter campus on Highland Dr. and follow directional signage. Please note that California Blvd. will be closed. 
  • Permits are not required for commencement weekend parking.
  • Parking is available in lots H1, H12, H14 and H16, located off of Highland Dr.
  • Accessible/ADA parking is available in lots H2a, H10, C7 and the Grand Avenue Structure. Valid placard or license plate required.
  • Shuttles traveling between parking lots/structures and the stadium will be available throughout the day to guests with mobility impairments and one companion.
  • Wheelchair rentals are available for guests with mobility impairments.
  • Uber and Lyft drop-off locations are located in lots C7 and C2d.

Tips and Reminders

  • Each ceremony will last approximately 60-90 minutes.
  • A clear bag policy will be in effect in Spanos Stadium (see details below).
  • Dress comfortably. There may be long walks on grass, hills and uneven pavement.
  • High-heels/stilettos are not recommended as they can cause a tripping hazard on the turf field.
  • Be prepared for the heat and sun. The turf field can feel hot in high temperatures.
  • After the ceremony, designate a meeting place with family and friends outside of the stadium.
  • Please leave pets at home. Only service animals are permitted on campus.

Clear Bag Policy

  • A clear bag policy will be in effect in Spanos Stadium. This limits individuals to one clear bag or small clutch per person (12x6x12 clear bag, 12x12 gallon Ziploc, or 4.5x8.5 clutch).
  • If you bring a non-clear bag larger than a small clutch, you will be required to store and pay to keep it in a bag locker near the entrance or you will need to return your bag to your vehicle prior to entry.
  • Non-clear diaper bags and medically necessary items/bags are permitted but will go through a thorough search process.

Zero Tolerance Policy

  • Do not arrive intoxicated. Anyone who is intoxicated or perceived to be intoxicated will not be allowed into the stadium.
  • Cal Poly is a smoke, vapor and tobacco-free campus. Tobacco, cannabis or smoking products are prohibited.

Prohibited Items

Alcohol, fireworks, weapons of any kind (firearms, knives, pepper spray, etc.) and glass bottles are prohibited. Anyone found in possession of these items will be removed from the event.

Other prohibited items include:

  • Outside food or beverages (factory sealed plastic bottles of water OK). All outside containers will be emptied upon arrival, regardless of their content.
  • Costumes
  • Stickers, flyers, banners, fan signs or large posters
  • Balloons, balls, inflatables or frisbees
  • Laser pointers or devices
  • Air horns, whistles or megaphones
  • Paint pens, permanent markers, spray paint
  • Coolers
  • Lawn chairs and shade structures

Sign Up for Commencement Emails

Guests and supporters are invited to sign up to receive Spring Commencement 2023 emails to stay informed and updated as new information becomes available. Eligible graduates will receive these emails automatically.


Graduation Process

Learn about expected graduation terms and how to change commencement ceremonies on the Graduate Information page.


Upcoming Spring Commencement Dates

  • 2024: June 15-16
  • 2025: June 14-15
  • 2026: June 13-14

Commencement Archive

Visit the Cal Poly Commencement YouTube Channel to watch past commencement ceremony livestream videos.

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