Hats off to you!

Celebrate the academic achievements of this year's graduating class by attending the University of Minnesota Crookston Commencement ceremony on campus or re-watch the livestream.

2024 Grad Fest

The 25th Annual Grad Fest for graduating seniors will be held April 3, 2024 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Sargeant Student Center International Lounge. Refreshments will be available. 

Seniors: this is your one-stop shop for everything you need to know about Commencement and to ensure you are ready to graduate. Information provided includes: (1) purchase your cap, gown, tassel, graduation announcements, diploma frame, and class ring which are all available at a DISCOUNT if purchased the day of Grad Fest; (2) check your academic status with the Office of the Registrar; (3) Financial Aid exit loan requirement information; (4) keeping your laptop after graduation; (5) disability accommodations for you or your guests at Commencement; (6) Career Services post-graduation survey and information; (7) what to expect as an alumni and how to stay in touch; (8) multiple chances to win great prizes.

2024 Ceremony Details

2024 Candidates

The list of 2024 candidates will be available soon...

Order of Events


* Below is the order of events from 2023, slight modifications will be made for 2024. Check back soon.

Chancellor Mary Holz-Clause presiding

Prelude and Processional
The audience will rise for the processional and remain standing for the National Anthem.

“Pomp and Circumstance” by Edward Elgar
U of M Crookston Symphony Orchestra
The processional is led by Mace-Bearer Sharon Stewart, Ph.D. The procession includes Faculty Marshal Kenneth Myers, M.S., faculty, staff, candidates for degrees, and platform guests.

“The Star Spangled Banner” by Francis Scott Key
U of M Crookston Symphony Orchestra and U of M Crookston Graduation Choir

Mary Holz-Clause, Ph.D., Chancellor

Greetings from the University of Minnesota Board of Regents
The Honorable Regent Doug Huebsch, Regent of the University of Minnesota

Keynote Address
Chancellor Emeritus Donald Sargeant, Ph.D.

Presentation of Candidates
Tony Kern, Ph.D., Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs 

Introduction of Candidates
Dani Johannesen, Ph.D., Associate Professor of English

Conferring of Degrees
The Honorable Regent Doug Huebsch, Regent of the University of Minnesota

“If We Hold On Together” by James Horner and Will Jennings
U of M Crookston Graduation Choir

Congratulatory Remarks from the Alumni Association
Alisha (Aasness) Asleson, Class of 2012, President, University of Minnesota Crookston Alumni Association

Speaking for the Student Body
Madison Elijah, U of M Crookston Student Association President

Passing of the Torch
Incoming 2023-24 U of M Crookston Student Association President 

Closing Comments
Mary Holz-Clause, Ph.D., Chancellor

“Minnesota Rouser” by Floyd Hutsell
U of M Crookston Graduation Choir and all attendees

Recessional and Postlude
George French, Ed.D., Associate Professor of Music/Theater

Photo Gallery

The 2024 Commencement photo gallery will be available after the ceremony.


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Student Instructions

Dress Code

Example of Academic Gown with Maroon Trim

Commencement is a formal ceremony that recognizes the academic achievements of our graduates. The traditional black academic cap and gown with maroon trim is worn by graduates. The cap is to be worn with the top parallel to the floor. The tassel is worn over the right temple until the degrees are conferred. All students participating in commencement are expected to dress in a manner that is in keeping with the occasion.

  • Men: dress pants (no jeans or shorts) with a collared dress shirt with tie
  • Women: dress pants (no jeans or shorts) with a blouse or a dress
  • Candidates will march and stand a good part of the time; thus, low-heeled, comfortable dress shoes are recommended. Avoid flip-flops or beach sandals.
  • Since there are no secure areas to leave personal belongings (jackets, purses, bags, etc.), you should give these items to a friend or family member to hold for you until after the ceremony.
  • Anyone under the influence of alcohol or other drugs will be asked to leave and will not be allowed to participate in the commencement ceremony.

Honor Cords and Additional Adornments

Official University of Minnesota honor cords denoting graduation with Distinction and High Distinction (distributed through the Office of the Registrar).

  • Official honor cords denoting participation in the U of M Crookston Honors Program (distributed by the Honors Program).
  • Approved stoles for international students and students who have completed a study abroad experience (distributed through the Office of International Programs).
  • Approved honor cords signifying military service or veterans status (distributed by Alumni and Donor Relations).
  • Approved stoles signifying a graduate’s cultural heritage (these are optional and available to purchase through the U of M Crookston Bookstore).
  • A chenille letter M worn on the grad’s left lapel area of the gown denoting participation in varsity athletics (distributed by Athletics and Alumni and Donor Relations).
  • Lapel pins worn on the left lapel area of the gown or stoles or cords distributed by and representing officially recognized student organizations (note: these must be approved in advance by the Commencement Committee).

The Assembly Process

Degree candidates should report to the Eagle’s Nest in the Sahlstrom Conference Center (in case of rain, report directly to the gym in the Wellness Center) by 10:20 a.m., where you will pick up your name card from one of the student marshals (those wearing maroon gowns) and/or members of the Registrar’s Office. If you wish, you may write your phonetic spelling on this card. Do not lose this card. As you cross the stage during the ceremony, you will hand your name card to the name reader who will announce your name. Student marshals will assist in forming the line of march. Degree candidates will line up (in random order) in the Eagle’s Nest and down the hall to the Student Center. After you are lined up, await the direction of the marshals to join the procession. It is important that you arrive on time. Individuals arriving late may be excluded from the processional and ceremony.

Instructions for Receiving Diploma

A student marshal will usher you to the stage. Hold your name card (which you received from the student marshal before the ceremony) in front of the name reader at the top of the steps. After your name has been read, proceed across the stage. No “selfies” are allowed to be taken on stage. After receiving the diploma, all candidates will return to their seats. 

Ceremony Photos

A photographer will be taking photos during the commencement ceremony and as you cross the stage with your diploma holder. A photo gallery of the event will be created following commencement where you will be able to view and download photos.

Items to Remember

  1. Degree candidates must remain standing until after the National Anthem.
  2. Male degree candidates must remove caps for the National Anthem. Watch the platform guests to see when they remove and replace their caps.
  3. All degree candidates will receive a name card from the student marshal before the ceremony which you will hold directly in front of the name reader on stage when you go to cross the stage. Do not walk across the stage until your name has been read.
  4. For the recessional, follow the student marshal out the north door of the gym.

Faculty & Staff Instructions

Faculty/staff will begin lining up in regalia in single file at 10:30 a.m. for the processional in the hallway of Sargeant Student Center and back toward the Prairie Room. In case of inclement weather, we will line up in the hallway that leads from the Sports Center to the Wellness Center

Faculty and staff are led by Faculty Marshal, Ken Myers and will follow Mace Bearer, Sharon Stewart in the processional. Faculty/staff will sit in the chairs on the left side in the reserved seating area. For the recessional, faculty/staff will follow the platform guests out of the gymnasium and exit through the north door of the Sports Center. A double column should be formed for graduates to walk through.

On your chairs will be a program and a confetti stick. The confetti sticks are launched over the graduates at the end of singing the Minnesota Rouser. To use the confetti stick, hold the bottom and raise your arm above your head. Flick your wrist and swing your arm and the confetti will float in the air in the direction of the students.

Requesting Accommodations Related to Disability

Interpreting Services

An American Sign Language interpreter will be available at the commencement ceremony.

Seat Reservations

If you have guests attending the ceremony who use mobility devices (ex. wheelchairs, walkers, scooters, canes, etc.) or who cannot climb bleacher stairs, you are encouraged to make arrangements in advance for accessible floor seating for those individuals. A graduate may request to have up to two (2) reserved seats for individual guests needing accommodations. These guests are allowed one (1) companion each to sit with them. (If this does not fit your needs, please inquire about this when making your seat reservations.)

Reserved seating will open one hour prior to the ceremony and continue until 15 minutes before commencement begins, at which time those without reservations may be seated in the reserved area. Plan accordingly to ensure your guests are able to make use of their reservations by arriving in time to be seated.

To make your seat reservations, email the following information to Brian Follette at bfollett@crk.umn.edu by April 21, 2023:

  1. Name of graduate
  2. Number of reserved seats needed - also indicate the number of companions joining your guest(s), if any
  3. Mailing address where tickets can be mailed prior to the event

*Indicate if alternative arrangements for ticket delivery are needed or preferred (ex. picking up tickets from campus)

Tickets for reserved seating will be mailed out after April 21. Graduates who do not get their seat reservations in by the April 21 deadline may not be able to have their tickets mailed to them, and alternative arrangements for ticket delivery may need to be made.

Other Accommodations

To request other accommodations (ex. sound enhancing device), and for all other questions related to accommodations during the commencement ceremony, contact: Brian Follette, bfollett@crk.umn.edu.


Questions about the U of M Crookston Commencement ceremony can be directed to:

Chris Winjum