Commencement Ceremony Information

Monday, May 15, 2017, Franklin Field

Penn's 261st Commencement ceremony will take place on Monday, May 15, 2017 in Franklin Field at 10:15 a.m., and is preceded by student and academic processions through campus. The ceremony will end at approximately noon and will feature the conferral of degrees, the awarding of honorary degrees, greetings by University officials, and remarks by the Commencement speaker.

Candidates for degrees in May, as well as graduates who completed degree requirements in August or December 2016, are invited to march in the procession and attend the Commencement ceremony. Students participating in the procession into Franklin Field should arrive at Hamilton Village (39th Street and Locust Walk) wearing academic regalia, no later than 8:00 a.m. The student procession will enter Franklin Field at approximately 9:30 a.m.

Inclement and Severe Weather Plans

Commencement will be held rain or shine.  However, for the safety of graduates and guests, severe weather conditions may require the cancellation of the student procession across campus or the delay of the ceremony.

In dangerous weather conditions, the ceremony may be relocated indoors to the Palestra, where seating would be limited to the academic procession and graduating students. In the case of this relocation, students should report to the Palestra no later than 9:30 a.m. Please know that the decision to move the Commencement ceremony indoors would be made in only extreme conditions.

If weather requires changes to the Commencement ceremony schedule, information will be found on:

  • Signs at Hamilton Village and around campus
  • Announcements on (215) 898-MELT and (215) 573-GRAD
  • Announcements on radio station KYW (1060 AM)
  • A notice on this website

Disability Seating

If you require special seating due to a wheelchair, limited physical mobility or other medical conditions, you may make arrangements for seating on the field or in the lower stands. Please be aware that the stadium is bench seating. Due to space constraints, guests with disabilities who are seated on the field may be accompanied by only one escort. Information on reserving this type of seating will be available in early 2017.

If you require Commencement information materials in alternate formats, advance notice is required.


If you have questions or comments, please contact the Office of the University Secretary.