College of Medicine and Life Sciences - Office of Student Affairs (OSA)



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Mulford Library Building - First Floor
3000 Arlington Avenue
Toledo, OH 43614
Phone: 419-383-4599
Fax: 419-383-4233

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The College of Medicine and Life Sciences Commencement will be Friday, May 29, 2015 at 2:00 pm at the Stranahan Theater, located at 4645 Heatherdowns Blvd., Toledo, OH. 43614 (map). The ceremony will last approximately two hours.


ARRIVAL: All graduates should arrive by no later than 1:00 p.m. to begin lining up for the processional and receive important instructions about the ceremony. There is no commencement rehearsal for graduates.

Graduates should enter through the main doors of the Great Hall, adjacent to the Stranahan Theater. Only graduates will be allowed in the line-up area.

Graduates who have not arrived by 1:30 p.m. will be removed from the line up as to not adversely affect the order of the ceremony. Staff will assist candidates in getting to the appropriate line-up location.

REGALIA: Academic regalia are required to participate in the commencement ceremony. (Exception: Military graduates wearing dress uniform.) Prior to the day of the ceremony graduates should try on regalia for fit and to ensure that they have received the correct regalia for their degree. Graduates should bring regalia (minus the hoods, which will be transported to the ceremony by Commencement staff) ironed/steamed and ready to wear to the ceremony.

PERSONAL BELONGINGS: Graduates should leave all personal belongings--including purses, wallets, phones and cameras--with their guests. There is no storage available for personal belongings and belongings should not be brought on the stage.

PROFESSIONAL BEHAVIOR: Graduates should conduct themselves with the highest degree of consideration, maturity and professionalism to ensure a pleasant and meaningful ceremony for all graduates and guests.    

Format of Ceremony

Though specific details vary from year to year, the Commencement Ceremony follows a standard general format:

  • Graduates process into the auditorium in assigned order within their degree groups.
  • Graduates are seated in rows of assigned seats on the stage of the Stranahan auditorium, facing the audience. There will be a printed program on each graduate's chair.
  • Ceremony includes various welcome addresses by distinguished University administrators, awarding of one or more honorary degrees, Commencement addresses by one or more invited speakers (e.g., the honorary degree recipient), student-led speeches (most often one MD and one graduate student speaker), and the recitation of an oath by the MD recipients.
  • Each graduate's name is read aloud during the ceremony. Names, as well as phonetic pronunciations, are included in the printed script at the podium. (Please provide guidance about correct name pronunciation in the Commencement Registration form.)
  • At the end of the ceremony, graduates recess out of the auditorium and back into the Great Hall. Guests can meet their graduates in the Stranahan lobby after the entire Commencement party has recessed out of the auditorium.
Special Hooders

All Special Hooders require advance approval from the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) to participate. These requests can be made on the College of Medicine and Life Sciences Commencement Registration form.

Only graduating medical (MD) and doctoral graduate (PhD) candidates may request a Special Hooder. Special Hooders are required to wear academic regalia in order to participate in the commencement ceremony. If Special Hooders do not already have their own regalia, regalia may be ordered by completing this form (PDF) and turning it into the UT Bookstore. Hooders are responsible for returning rented regalia to the designated location in the Stranahan immediately following the ceremony.

Special Hooders should arrive no later than 1:00 p.m. to receive training and other important instructions. Hooders should enter through the main doors of the Great Hall, adjacent to the Stranahan Theater and will be directed by staff to the appropriate line-up location. Special Hooders will be seated in a designated area of the audience, in assigned seats according to the marching order of their graduate(s).

If a Special Hooder requires special accommodations due to a disability please contact the Office of Student Affairs at .


All guests should enter the Stranahan Theater through the main lobby. The estimated time for doors to open to the auditorium for seating is 1pm. Guests may wait in the outdoor area or Stranahan lobby until doors to the auditorium open. Guests are not permitted in the graduate line-up area in the Great Hall.

At this time, admission to the ceremony does not require a ticket; however, seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.  In consideration of all guests, saving of seats for family and friends is discouraged.

Academic Regalia for Graduates

Academic regalia are required to participate in the commencement ceremony. (Exception: Military graduates wearing dress uniform.)

Caps/tams, gowns, tassels, hoods, announcements and other graduation items are purchased at the University Bookstore. Please refer to this document (PDF) for more information. For questions about regalia, please contact the bookstore at (419) 573-2516.

Photographs A professional photograph is taken of each candidate as he/she proceeds across the stage. To purchase:

Navigate to the event page for commencement at
Search for photos under UTCOM GRADUATION.

For more information contact:
Kurt Nielsen Photography
5431 Schultz Drive
Sylvania, OH  43560
(419) 885-7153

Accessibility Concerns

Graduates and guests requiring accommodation due to a disability should contact the Office of Student Affairs at In your email, please include the following information:

  • Name of person requiring special accommodations
  • Type of accommodation needed (e.g., wheelchair access, seating near exit, seating near stage, sign language interpreter)
  • Number of people in the party

Upon arrival at the Stranahan, party including guest with special accommodation should give the name to the usher at the entrance to the auditorium, where an usher will assist.

Space is available for those in need of handicapped parking and for dropping off or picking up guests who cannot walk great distances. For efficient parking, please bring along a handicap-parking pass if you have one.

Diploma Graduates who have completed all degree requirements will be awarded their diploma at commencement. Students with outstanding degree requirements, or holds on their account (i.e. parking tickets, financial obligations, library fines) will receive a diploma cover. Graduates not receiving their diploma at commencement will have their diploma sent to them via certified mail once all outstanding degree requirements or other obligations have been fulfilled.
Dual Degree Recipients Dual degree graduates will receive special recognition during commencement. If you have already received one of your diplomas you may bring it with you to commencement to have both diplomas presented as part of this recognition. Please contact the Office of Student Affairs at if you plan on bringing your diploma with you.
Transcript (Graduate Students) Degrees are typically posted to the transcript record within 30 days of the commencement ceremony. If you order a transcript before your degree is posted to your record, mark the appropriate space on the request form to indicate that the transcript should be sent after the degree is posted.

Tips for an extraordinary ceremony:

  • Leave personal items like coats and purses with guests. There are no facilities available for storing these items.
  • Arrive by 1:00 p.m. to allow adequate time to line-up for the processional.
  • All graduates and Special Hooders should enter through the Great Hall entrance.
  • At this time, graduates may bring as many guests as they wish and tickets are not required. All guests should enter through the main entrance to the Stranahan Theater. Only graduates are allowed in the line-up area.
  • Appropriate academic regalia are required to participate. Jeans, sandals and shorts are not permitted. Please dress accordingly.
  • Wear additional academic regalia that correspond with your honor society (e.g., sash, medal, ribbon, etc.).

For more information, email .

Last Updated: 6/26/15