Student Checklist

In addition to requesting tickets, students should also look into the items on this page to ensure smooth sailing commencement day. 

Commencement Eligibility

Candidates for associate's, bachelor's, master's, specialist in education, and doctor of pharmacy degrees are invited to participate in the commencement exercises. A degree application must be filed in the Office of Registration and Records, Jordan Hall, Room 133 by December 6, 2013. If you have not done so, come to the Office of Registration and Records immediately or submit the form degree application (PDF).

If you find it necessary to have a degree conferred in absentia, the student must present a petition to the dean of the appropriate college at least two weeks before commencement. If the petition is approved, the diploma may be picked up at the Office of Registration and Records, Jordan Hall, room 133, after May 12, 2014. You may also contact the Office of Registration and Records at (317) 940-9574 to have the diploma mailed. Requests to mail diplomas must be submitted in writing to Registration and Records.

Students must complete all Butler University obligations (academic, financial and otherwise) prior to actually receiving their diploma.

If you will complete your academic requirements in this calendar year, you may petition the dean of your college to receive permission to participate in the commencement ceremony, but you will not actually receive a diploma.

Caps, Gowns, Hoods, Announcements

Whitney and WalterCaps and gowns will be available for purchase and pick up during the Grad Finale, Thursday, March 27, 2014 from 3:00 - 7:00 p.m. in the Atherton Union Reilly Room.  No pre-order of Caps and Gowns is needed; all of the necessary elements of your order will be available during the Grad Finale event.  Caps and gowns not picked up during Grad Finale will be at the Butler Bookstore beginning on Friday, March 28 until just before May Commencement. The Bookstore hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday.  Please call the Butler Bookstore for any questions regarding cap and gown orders (317) 940-9228 for any special event hours.

Announcements and rings may also be purchased from Jostens at (800) 854-7464 or at the Butler Bookstore.

Proper Apparel for Commencement Day

Commencement is a dignified occasion. Good academic taste requires that the cap be worn straight. The tassel should be on the right side of the cap for candidates who have not received a baccalaureate degree from any college or university. Those who have received such a degree will wear the tassel on the left side. Please dress accordingly. In selecting apparel:

  • Women should remember that the hem of the gown is approximately 7 inches above the ankles. Dark shoes are preferred.
  • High heels, stilettos, pumps, or heels are strictly prohibited on the turf of the Butler Bowl. Please choose other styles of dark shoes. 
  • For men, dark shoes and socks, dark trousers, light-colored shirts and appropriate ties are preferred. Men with a master's gown should wear a dark coat under the gown, as the arms below the elbows are visible.
  • Corsages are not to be worn on academic attire.

Suggested guidelines for student academic regalia:

  • The university approved mortar board and gown
  • One university approved sash representing the country of a study abroad experience, country of origin for international students, or a Kente cloth stole
  • One honor cord from one of Butler's recognized honor societies
  • One honor cord representing magna, summa, or cum laude honors from Butler
  • One pin, no larger than 1"x 1", approved by the PULSE office, representing their affiliation to one of Butler's official student organizations

International and Study Abroad Students

Students who are international students and those who have studied abroad are encouraged to wear the international sash representing their home country or the country where they studied.  Sashes may be ordered from an online order form which needs to be deposited at the Efromyson Diversity Center (317) 940-6570 in Atherton Union (Room 004).  Single country sashes are $34  and dual country sashes are $45 plus shipping and handling (Priority Mail is $6.95, UPS is $10.00).  Orders must be placed before March 28, 2014 in order to be received in time for Commencement.  

Students interested in wearing a Kente cloth stole should contact the Efromyson Diversity Center at (317) 940-6570 for information on placing an order.

Commencement Day Instructions

Graduate Seats with ProgramsCandidates assemble in the Efroymson Family Gym (formerly known as the West Gym) located at the west end of Hinkle Fieldhouse by 9 a.m. Signs will designate each college. Please find the seat with your name on it and sit down. Attendance is taken in the (Efroymson Family Gym (formerly known as the West Gym). You must be seated by 9:15 a.m. or your name will not be read during the commencement ceremony. Honors cords will be distributed in the gym. (The gym will be unattended during the ceremony, so please give your valuables to a friend or family member before reporting for the procession.) Please turn off your cell phones.

Time and site of ceremony

10:00 a.m. (EST), Butler Bowl (stadium), adjacent to Hinkle Fieldhouse

Please note that access to the Butler Bowl, where the ceremony occurs, will be greatly reduced at 9:30 a.m. Guests are strongly encouraged to visit the restrooms and concessions prior to this time and return to their seats in order to see the faculty and student processional.

Inclement Weather Contingency Plan

Butler University administration will monitor the weather the week leading up to commencement. Depending on the severity of the weather, there are several possible ceremony scenarios:

  • The ceremony may continue as scheduled in the Butler Bowl, outdoors. (Free ponchos will be available for every guests seated in the Butler Bowl.)
  • The ceremony may by delayed (by four to six hours) and continue in the Butler Bowl, outdoors. 
  • The ceremony may be moved indoors into Clowes Memorial Hall. 
If the ceremony moves indoors, it will be split into two ceremonies. At each ceremony, students will process with their college, sit together as a class, and cross the stage to receive their own individual diplomas. 
  • The first ceremony would begin at 10:00 a.m. and would feature the following colleges and graduates: College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, College of Education, and College of Communication.
  • The second ceremony would begin at 3:00 p.m. and would feature the following colleges and graduates: College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, College of Business and Jordan College of the Arts.


On Commencement Day, May 10, 2014, the University will notify graduates and guests of the ceremony's location and time through the following vehicles: Butler Twitter accounts (@ButlerU@LevesterJohnson); the University website (; and the graduating class email listserv. Graduates and guests may also call 317-940-6200 to hear a pre-recorded message about the day's plan. 


Should an emergency arise to prevent you from attending commencement, please call the Office of Registration & Records, Monday through Friday, (317) 940-9203. On Saturday, May 10, 2014, please call the Commencement Information Desk (317) 940-6200.

Emergency Medical Technicians will be located in the Press Box of the Butler Bowl. 

Late Arrival

If an emergency causes a graduating student to arrive after the academic procession has started, please report to the Commencement Information Desk (317) 940-6200 located near the entrance of the Butler Bowl.