Celebrating 2020 Graduates

Student wearing mortarboard decorated to say My Story Is Now

Class of 2020 Celebration Weekend:

Friday, May 6, 2022
6:30 p.m.
Erie Insurance Arena

Muffins and Mimosas Alumni Event
Saturday, May 7, 2022
10:00 a.m.

Metzgar Center


Commencement Information for 2020 Graduates 

  • Commencement time: Commencement begins at 6:30 p.m. Candidates for all degrees should report to the lower level of Erie Insurance Arena no later than 5:30 p.m.
  • Guests: No tickets are required for your guests' admission, and guest seating is first come, first served, with doors opening at 5:00 p.m. The ceremony also will be live-streamed at behrend.psu.edu. Please leave purses and other valuables with your guests. Do not take them onto the arena floor.
  • Academic Dress: Candidates for graduation must wear an official cap and gown to participate in the processional and ceremony. Try on your gown before the ceremony. If it doesn't fit well, it can be exchanged at the Behrend Bookstore.  
  • Properly Wearing Academic Regalia: Candidates for the baccalaureate and associate degrees should wear the tassel of the cap on the right front edge. Candidates must wear a gown and a cap with a tassel. The gown must be zipped in order to participate in the processional and ceremony.
  • Master’s Hoods: Candidates for a master's degree should carry their hood in the processional and bring it with them to the stage. Your hood will be placed on your shoulders by the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies. 
  • Update your address: Commencement information will be sent through the mail, so let us know how to reach you. Update your alumni information online.

Commencement Information for Guests

  • Commencement time: Commencement begins promptly at 6:30 p.m.. Doors will open at 5:00 p.m., and seating is first come, first served. No ticket is required for admission.
  • Parking: Free parking is available after 5:00 p.m. Friday in the Erie Insurance Parking Deck at 124 East Eighth Street, directly across the street from the arena. Other municipal parking ramps will charge a fee. As a reminder, please be sure to allow extra time for screening at the entrances to Erie Insurance Arena. All bags and purses will be searched, and the following items are prohibited in the arena: weapons of any kind, bottles, cans, flasks, selfie sticks, helium balloons, beach balls, laser pointers, air horns and other noisemakers, and outside food or beverages..
  • Travel and Accommodations: Learn more about transportation options, directions to Behrend, and nearby hotels.
  • Photography To commemorate this milestone occasion, a professional photograph is taken of each graduate. To avoid congestion and to maintain decorum in the ceremony, we ask that family and friends refrain from approaching the stage when taking pictures or using a video camera.


Graduates: What to Wear at Commencement

Academic dress (cap, gown and tassel) or the uniform of one of the armed forces is required to participate in a ceremony. Official Penn State academic regalia should be purchased online.

Associate degree and bachelor's degree candidates: The official academic regalia is a blue Penn State gown with wide sleeves and a blue mortarboard cap with a white tassel, worn on the right front edge.

Master's degree candidates: The official academic regalia is a black gown with pointed sleeves and a black mortarboard cap with a black tassel, worn on the left front edge. Candidates should carry the hood representing their academic discipline; the hood will be placed on them during the ceremony.


Frequently Asked Questions

What if I already have a cap and tassel?
Some Class of 2020 graduates may already have an official Penn State mortarboard and tassel that was mailed to you in 2020. If you have the official items provided by Penn State, you do not need to purchase a new cap and tassel. Please be sure that it is the correct Penn State cap and tassel, as only those wearing official academic regalia may participate in the ceremony.

What if I already have a gown?
If you purchased a gown online in 2020 through Jostens' online Penn State store, then you do not need to purchase a new one. Be sure that it is the correct Penn State gown for your degree, as only those wearing official academic regalia may participate in the ceremony.

What should I wear the day of the ceremony?
Please arrive at the ceremony already wearing your regalia. No regalia will be available at the ceremony. It is suggested that men wear slacks and a dress shirt with a tie. For women, slacks with a blouse or a dress is appropriate. Because of the formality of this occasion and safety concerns, please wear appropriate footwear. Flip-flops, clogs, very high heels, and loose-fitting shoes are not recommended.