Important Commencement Update - Jan. 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.
Cal Poly Commencement Office
Commencement Ceremony Schedule
June 15-16, 2024
Saturday, June 15, 2024
- 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
Sunday, June 16, 2024
- 8:30 a.m. - Orfalea College of Business
- 12:30 p.m. - Philip and Christina Bailey College of Science and Mathematics
- 4:30 p.m. - College of Liberal Arts
Each ceremony will last approximately 90 minutes.
The College of Architecture and Environmental Design ceremony will be slightly shorter in duration.
The College of Engineering ceremony will be slightly longer in duration.
Instructions for how to claim up to 10 ceremony guest tickets will be emailed to eligible graduates in spring quarter.
- Tickets are required for guest entrance into the ceremony and can be presented in 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 before the ceremony.
- Graduates do not need a ticket.
- Due to capacity limitations, graduates cannot request more than 10 tickets.
Caps, gowns, tassels, sashes, master's hoods, gifts and gear will be available to order online and in person at the Cal Poly Mustang Shop in spring quarter. Regalia is required to participate in commencement.
Learn about important day-of details, instructions and policies for the college ceremonies.
- Graduates should arrive at Spanos Stadium one hour before their ceremony start time.
- Please arrive at the graduate entrance 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 prohibited (factory-sealed plastic bottles and empty reusable bottles are OK). All outside containers will be emptied upon arrival, regardless of their content.
Guest and Stadium Information
- Stadium gates open one hour before each ceremony for guests.
- Guests can enter and exit Spanos Stadium through each gate.
- Outside food or beverages are prohibited (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 located on the east and west sides of the stadium.
- Restrooms are located underneath the bleachers.
- Ceremonies will be live-streamed with closed captioning.
- Medical personnel are located on the south end of the field.
- Misting fans are located throughout the field.
- 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.
- Wheelchair rentals are available for guests with mobility impairments.
- Closed captioning and on-screen interpreters are available on all stadium screens.
- Gift vendors are located on the east side of the stadium.
Parking and Shuttles
Please note that campus parking will be highly impacted throughout commencement weekend. Consider using alternative transportation methods 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 Highland Dr.
- Accessible/ADA parking is available in lots H2a, C7 and the Grand Avenue Structure. Valid placard or license plate is required.
- Shuttles traveling between parking lots/structures and the stadium will be available to guests with mobility impairments and one companion throughout the day.
- Uber and Lyft drop-off locations are located in lots C7 and C2d.
Tips and Reminders
- Each ceremony will last approximately 90 minutes.
- The College of Architecture and Environmental Design ceremony will be slightly shorter in duration.
- The College of Engineering ceremony will be slightly longer in duration.
- 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 return your bag to your vehicle before 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 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.
Code of Conduct
The university takes violations of the Code of Conduct seriously during commencement. Appropriate disciplinary actions can and will be imposed for any behavior or actions that violate this code. Such violations will be reported to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, and the university may impose sanctions accordingly. In addition to possibly being removed from participating in commencement, consequences may also include the withholding of your diploma, or other necessary sanctions.
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.
- 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
- Lawn chairs and shade structures
View and purchase commencement ceremony photos from GradImages. Prices vary by order.
Learn about expected graduation terms, ceremony assignments and more on the Graduate Information page.
Upcoming Commencement Dates
- 2025: June 14-15
- 2026: June 13-14
Visit the Cal Poly Commencement YouTube Channel to watch past commencement ceremony livestream videos.