South Campus

Know Before You Go: Commencement Rules

Graduates, Friends, and Families,

The City College of New York requests that the excitement of celebrating your academic achievement be expressed in a dignified way that will not prevent graduating students and their families from enjoying the commencement ceremony, and ensures positive memories for all attendees.

In addition to the CUNY Student Code of Conduct (Article XV and Henderson Rules), all commencement ceremony attendees are expected to abide by the following regardless of venue*:

  • Students participating in commencement must follow all instructions provided by faculty and staff, so that the ceremony can run smoothly. The ceremony starts at 10:00am and the gates will open 8:00am; please arrive on time.
  • Graduates should access Convent Avenue at W. 135th Street with their CCNY ID's. Graduates will line up by division on Convent Avenue south of W.135th Street.
  • Students are encouraged to wear appropriate footwear, as the ceremony will require a significant amount of time standing and walking. In addition, please note that the south campus venue is a grassy area.
  • All guests must present their electronic tickets at check in, no exceptions.
  • Students and guests are expected to refrain from engaging in disruptive behavior. 
  • Trained service animals that assist students or guests with disabilities are welcome at commencement. 
  • Wheel chairs, walking canes, and other ADA required devices are acceptable.
  • Diaper bags and strollers are allowed for families with babies/toddlers, all items will be checked.
  • Words or items perceived to be diminishing or slandering toward any group, individual or institution, the University, any faculty or staff member, and/or any student are prohibited on graduation caps. 
  • Noise making devices, air horns, cowbells, alarm devices, noisemakers, large signs, banners, balloons, flags and other items that may disrupt the ceremony or other’s ability to view or hear the ceremony, are prohibited**.
  • Projectiles like flying discs, frisbees and beach balls are not allowed**.
  • Alcohol and illegal drugs or substances are prohibited**.
  • Weapons, firearms, knives, laser pointers, flares, pepper spray/mace, poles, staffs, sticks and other defensive devices are not allowed on campus**.
  • Hoverboards, skateboards, bicycles and other personal recreational vehicles are not allowed**.
  • Visibly obscene, indecent, or inappropriate clothing will not be permitted**.
  • Glass bottles are not allowed inside the venue**.

**Prohibited Items: There will be no provisions for checking-in prohibited items. 


  • One-gallon clear plastic freezer bag (Ziploc bag or similar).
  • Small clutch purses, approximately the size of a hand, or 4.5″ x 6.5″ with or without a handle or strap, may be carried into the venue* along with one of the clear bag options.
  • An exception will be made for medically necessary items after proper inspection at entry.
  • Each member of a family, including children, will be able to carry an approved clear bag and a clutch purse.

*Graduation Venues: Graduation venues include The South Campus Great Lawn, Aaron Davis Hall, and the Great Hall of Shepard Hall. 

All commencement participants remain students of the college until their degree is conferred, and as such, must adhere to all policies that apply to students enrolled at the institution. Violations of commencement guidelines may result in a disciplinary referral to the Office of Student Affairs, potentially delaying the posting of the degree until the matter is satisfactorily resolved. Again, you continue to be a City College student until your degree is conferred. 

Please be aware that by attending The City College of New York’s main commencement exercises that is consent to your voice, name, and/or likeness being used, without compensation, in films, tapes, and photography, and you release The City College of New York from any liability on account of such use. Notices will be placed on the grounds to reiterate that recording and photography will be in progress. If you do not wish to have your voice, name or likeness used in this way, please remain out of view of cameras and/or video recording devices. The notice that you will see on-site can also be found here: crowdreleasesign.pdf (

In preparation for the end of the ceremony and/or the need to vacate the area, please make a plan and pick a spot to meet up with friends/family. The farther from the South Campus Lawn the better, because of the crowds that will be in the area. We have other ceremonies using the area following the main CCNY Commencement. When your ceremony is finished, other graduates and guests may be approaching the South Campus Great Lawn.

Last Updated: 05/24/2024 15:01