CALS Graduation Convocation

Congratulations graduates! You’ve done the work, created lifelong memories, and built enduring connections. Now reflect back, look forward, and celebrate your success! We look forward to celebrating your achievements and welcoming you as the newest members of the CALS Alumni family.

May 2023 Graduation Celebrations

Students from all campuses - Main, Arizona Online, and Distance - graduating in January/Winter 2023, May/Spring 2023 and August/Summer 2023 are automatically invited to the CALS Graduation celebrations. 

Are you graduating in a different semester but want to participate in the May 2023 celebrations? Complete this "request to participate" form by April 14, 2023.

Read more about: RSVP FAQCeremony Day: What to Expect, Additional Ceremony FAQ 

CALS Senior Sendoff
Friday, May 12
10 - 11:30 am | Old Main Lawn
4 guests per graduate

CALS Graduation Convocation
Saturday, May 13
2 pm | McKale Center
Livestream link to follow

May Graduation RSVP FAQ

Is RSVP required for the Graduation Celebrations?

  • Yes - RSVP is required for both the Senior Sendoff and the Graduation Convocation.
  • Students will RSVP through eSMS (RSVP will be available closer to ceremony date). 

How many graduation guest tickets were students allowed to request?

  • There is no limit on the number of guests attending the May ceremony at McKale. Additionally, guest tickets are not required and are not being distributed. 

What's the Senior Sendoff?

  • CALS Senior Sendoff, Friday, May 12 from 10 - 11:30 am, Forbes Building (guests are welcome, max of 4 per student please)
  • Get a jump-start celebrating with your loved ones at Senior Sendoff, a CALS tradition! Join us for lunch, entertainment, and community.
  • Even better? Student attendees will:
    • Receive their official CALS Alumni pin and CALS graduation pen.
    • A professional photographer will be available to take group photos of students and their family/supporters (dressy casual attire recommended). 

Ceremony Day: What to Expect

All students who participate in the in-person Convocation ceremony will:

  • have their name read,
  • cross the stage,
  • receive a medallion as a graduation memento,
  • be hooded (Master's and Doctoral students only).
  • have a professional photograph taken after crossing the stage (Photography provided by GradImages. All students will receive an email to their UA email account once photos are available. Photos can be purchased at that time.)

Bag Policy

  • McKale Center requires bag checks for all individuals entering the building. 

Additionally, all guests will receive a print program listing the names of all graduating students.

Additional Ceremony FAQ

Are a cap and gown required at the CALS Graduation Convocation?

  • Cap and gown are required; purchase these items at the UA BookStores. A stole, tassel and cords are optional

Can I wear high-heels?

  • Comfortable shoes are recommended but there is no required or excluded footwear – wedges, sneakers and heels are allowable. Please note: Comfortable shoes are also encouraged for the University Commencement ceremony – no high-heels.

Are diplomas handed out at graduation?

  • Diplomas are mailed by the Registrar's Office after all grades post; view more information here. Diplomas are not handed out at the College Graduation Convocation nor University Commencement. All students who participate in the CALS Graduation Convocation receive a college medallion.

What's the personal graduation slide?

  • All graduating students have the option to submit a photo and a Thank You message or quote. We'll use that information to create a personalized graduation slide. The graduation slides will display in the Forbes Lobby and also before the CALS Graduation Convocation ceremony.

How long will the ceremony last?

  • The ceremony is scheduled from 2 - 4 pm.

What is the CALS college color?

  • There are three graduation colors associated with CALS:
    • Maize for all Agriculture/Life Sciences majors
    • Maroon for all majors in the Norton School of Family & Consumer Sciences
    • Orange for shared majors between CALS and the College of Engineering
  • What does this mean for students? When purchasing regalia, select the appropriate combination based on your academic level and major/program:
    • Undergraduate/Bachelor's Students: Based on your major, you have the option of purchasing a Maize, Maroon, or Orange stole and also a Maize, Maroon, or Orange tassle from the UA BookStores.
    • Master's Students: Based on your program, purchase the Maize or Maroon regalia hood. The Master's tassel is black and is included with your cap and gown.
    • Doctoral Students: Purchase the Royal Blue regalia hood (all CALS Doctoral students purchase the Royal Blue hood, regardless of program). The Doctoral hood is in addition to purchasing your gown and tam.

Where do I purchase graduation regalia?

  • The UA BookStores hosts a GradFest event each semester; students often purchase graduation regalia during that event.
  • Many students also explore these options to obtain a cap and gown:
    • Borrow from a previous CALS student
    • Explore local thrift shops

How do I obtain cords? 

  • CALS distributes cords to students who have received Academic Distinction and who are part of AgriLife Council/club involvement
  • If you feel like you are missing cords, or have questions about cords, please get in touch with Leslie Grignon at

What's the Difference? Convocation vs Commencement

Convocations are ceremonies in which students are acknowledged in a smaller setting. Convocations are held each fall and spring and are coordinated by individual schools or colleges. At the CALS Graduation Convocation all graduating students:

  • can apply to be a graduation speaker (application available closer to April 2023)
  • have their name read,
  • cross the stage,
  • receive a medallion,
  • are hooded (Master's and Doctoral students only).

Commencement is the university-wide ceremony in honor of the completion of your academic requirements. Commencement is held once a year only, in May. The ceremony ends with a celebration of all Wildcats. Learn more about the May 2023 University Commencement.

Safety Guidelines

  • For the safety of all the attendees, the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences strongly recommends that all guests wear masks when attending this event. Masks will be available at the door for your convenience.
  • COVID-19 Guidelines: All guests will be required to follow campus health and safety protocols in place at the time of this event as well as adhere to any existing state and local guidelines. In addition, this event may be cancelled or changed on short notice due to public health circumstances. For updates and information, please visit


Contact Leslie Grignon,