May 16, 2020 Commencement Ceremony Cancelled

As we all continue to navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have made the difficult but necessary decision to cancel the May 2020 Commencement Ceremony. The Baccalaureate Mass and Reception on May 15, 2020 will also be cancelled.

Seattle University Administration and the Commencement Committee are working with the graduating class  to brainstorm an alternative celebration. If you are a member of the graduating class of 2020, and would like to join the Commencement Committee to help plan our celebration, please contact Associate Dean Donna Claxton Deming at

Be on the lookout for additional announcements on this page.

Please feel free to call 206-398-4302 or email if you have questions, or need more information. 

Date, Time, and Location of the Commencement Ceremony

Commencement will be held on Saturday, May 16, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. at the Marion Oliver McCaw Hall at Seattle Center, 321 Mercer Street, Seattle, Washington. (Get directions here.) All May 2020 and August 2020 degree candidates are encouraged to be present. Graduates must arrive at 9:15 a.m. We expect the ceremony to last two to two and half hours.


Baccalaureate Mass and Reception 

A Baccalaureate Mass will be held on Friday, May 15, 2020 at 4:30 p.m. in the Chapel of St. Ignatius, located on the Seattle University campus. (Get directions here.) All students and their guests, regardless of religious affiliation, are invited to attend. Graduates wishing to process should assemble on the first floor of Sullivan Hall at the west entrance doors (outside of the Courtroom) at 4:15 p.m. dressed in their cap and gown. The hood will not be worn during the Mass.

The School of Law will host a reception celebrating our graduates on Friday, May 15 at the law school from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. All family and friends of graduates are welcome to attend, including children.

If you do not wish to participate in the Mass, you and your guests are welcome to attend the reception. There will not be a reception following the graduation ceremony on Saturday.

Directions to campus can be found on our website

Caps and Gowns

Academic dress is required for the commencement ceremony.

Cap and Gown Ordering
Rental of regalia is provided free of charge to graduates. There are no special cords, tassels, or colors for students graduating with honors. Some student organizations will bestow stoles or cords to be worn at the graduation ceremony; however, these will not be a part of your rental package.

Commencement announcements will not be provided, but will be available for purchase at the same time you request your regalia rental package.

Regalia, graduation announcements and other keepsakes are available to order online through the Herff Jones website.  Online orders will close Monday, March 23, 2020.   

Cap and Gown Pick-up
Regalia will be distributed Wednesday, May 6, 2020 between 4:00pm and 6:00pm on the 2nd Floor Gallery of Sullivan Hall. You may have a friend or family member pick up your regalia on your behalf. If you are unable to pick up your regalia on May 6, it will be held for you in the Dean's Office for pick up May 7 - May 14.   

Academic dress is to be returned following the ceremony. A Herff Jones Representative will be at the commencement ceremony to assist.

You may address any questions about fees, fitting or pickup of the academic regalia to Deann Ketchum (206-398-4302).

Selection of Faculty and Student Speakers

The Commencement Committee and the Associate Dean for Student Affairs will coordinate the election of the student and faculty commencement speakers. The speakers will be elected by the graduating class. The Committee will  develop the process for selecting the student speaker, the faculty award winner and speaker, and the faculty hooders and marshals.

Members of the Committee will organize the Baccalaureate Mass and the nomination process for the performance of the National Anthem.

If you are interested in participating on the Committee, you are welcome to join the first meeting on Wednesday, February 12 at 3:00pm in the Dean's Conference Room (Room 210, Second Floor of Sullivan Hall).

If you  cannot attend the meeting, please email and we will be sure you are connected with Commencement Committee activities going forward.


Tickets are not required for graduation. Students may invite as many friends and family to attend the ceremony as they wish.

Disabled seating will be available, and families will be able to sit together. More information about ADA Accommodations can be found here.

Firearms are not allowed at events on city property. In addition, it is the policy of Seattle University to prohibit firearms at University events.

Concessions will not be available during this event. No food or drink is allowed in the venue with the exception of water bottles with lids. Please, no balloons, confetti, or silly string.

Instructions for Graduates:
Graduates must be at the assembly point at McCaw Hall at 9:15 a.m., wearing their regalia (cap and gown). Graduates will carry the hood over their left arm and will be hooded during the ceremony. Detailed instructions will be sent to graduates in April. Upon arriving you will be given a card with your name on it. Make sure you get a card before lining up. Staff volunteers will be available to assist you with your regalia and lining up. Please arrive promptly at 9:15 a.m.

Photographers from GradImages will be present to take photos as each student is awarded his or her degree. These will be available to view and purchase online a few days after the ceremony.

Regalia will be returned immediately after the ceremony.

Family Hooders:
Graduating students who have a family member who is a graduate of Seattle University School of Law or the University of Puget Sound School of Law may invite that relative to assist in his/her hooding during the ceremony. In keeping with the University tradition, members of the faculty, staff, University Board of Trustees or Board of Regents may also be invited to assist in the hooding of family members. If you meet the above criteria, please email no later than Monday, April 24, 2020. Please include the full name of your relative, your relationship, and the year they graduated.

Share Your Accomplishments!

If you post updates, photos, or video to social media, we'd love to celebrate with you! Remember to tag us @seattleulaw or use the hashtag #seattleulaw2020 or post to our Facebook page.

Application for Graduation

If you have not yet applied for graduation, please do so at your earliest opportunity via SUOnline. The application gives each student the ONLY opportunity to indicate the manner in which your name will appear on your diploma and the way in which it will appear in the commencement program.

Be sure to submit the phonetic pronunciation of your name to ensure correct pronunciation during the ceremony.

The application can be found under the Students Menu section under "Academic Profile". Be sure you select "Law Application for Graduation (Law Students)" link. You will receive a system-generated email once your application has gone through. Please see the Registrar's Graduation page for more information.

All of us involved in planning this ceremony want each of you to know that it is our intent to make your commencement as pleasant and memorable as possible for you, your family and friends.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this information or the arrangements as explained, do not hesitate to contact the Assistant to the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Deann Ketchum, at 206-398-4302 or by e-mail at