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Commencement & TGS Hooding Ceremony

Please see below for important dates & information regarding the 2023 Commencement & TGS Hooding Ceremonies. We will continue to update this webpage as details become available.

2023 Commencement

Commencement is open to all Northwestern graduates. It is a University-wide ceremony where graduates are commemorated as a whole. During the ceremony, students, faculty, and guest speakers address graduates and their families.

The 2023 Commencement ceremony will take place on Monday, June 12, 2023 at 9:00 AM at Ryan Field Stadium on north campus. Please refer to the University Graduation website for details.

In addition to the University Commencement ceremony, each Northwestern school and The Family Institute host a ceremony or ceremonies for graduates.

Students who wish to participate in the University Commencement, a school ceremony, or both should pay careful attention to all deadline announcements as they are made closer to the ceremonies. Questions regarding Commencement can be directed to the office of Graduation and Senior Year Experiences (GSYE).



TGS PhD and MFA Hooding Ceremony 

The Graduate School will host an in-person PhD and MFA hooding ceremony on Saturday, June 10, 2023 at 2:00 PM in Ryan Fieldhouse on north campus. This hooding ceremony formally recognizes participating graduates as members of the academic community.

Ceremony Eligibility

This annual ceremony is open to all PhD and MFA graduates of TGS programs that are in partnership with the following schools:

2022–23 PhD and MFA graduates—Summer (September) 2022 through Spring (June) 2023—are invited to attend this year's hooding ceremony. 

In order to participate in the 2023 PhD and MFA Hooding Ceremony, your PhD or MFA must be conferred in September 2022, December 2022, March 2023, or June 2023.

Please note that Summer (September) 2023 graduates are not eligible to participate in this year’s hooding ceremony. If you will graduate in September 2023, you will be invited to participate in the 2023–24 PhD and MFA Hooding Ceremony, which will be held in June 2024.

Intent to Participate Form

Starting Monday, March 20, The Graduate School will email an Intent to Participate Form to eligible PhD and MFA graduates who complete all degree requirements.

This form must be submitted on or before Friday, May 5, 2023 to participate in the 2023 hooding ceremony. Late submissions cannot be considered.

Please note that Friday, May 5 is also the deadline for anticipated Spring 2023 graduates to submit all final degree requirements. Those spring graduates who do not submit all degree requirements by this deadline will be asked to reapply for graduation in Summer (September) 2023 and will be invited to participate in next year's hooding ceremony in June 2024. There are unfortunately no exceptions.

Faculty Representation

Each participating PhD and MFA graduate will invite a current Northwestern graduate faculty member to perform their hooding. This may be your adviser, another faculty member from your program, or a TGS associate dean. Please confirm the faculty member’s availability with them prior to listing them as your designated hooder on the Intent to Participate Form.

Hooding Experience

The hooding ceremony is a special recognition ceremony for PhD and MFA degree candidates during which a Northwestern graduate faculty member places the doctoral hood over the head of each graduate, signifying the graduate’s success in fully completing the graduate program and welcoming them to the academy of scholars. 


Regalia is required to participate in the hooding and/or main Commencement ceremony. The University's regalia ordering portal will open on Monday, February 27, and all master's and doctoral regalia orders must be submitted no later than Friday, April 21.

Please note that the deadline to order regalia precedes TGS's deadline to confirm your participation in our hooding ceremony by two weeks. Please plan ahead to ensure your regalia arrives on time.

Please visit the regalia page of the graduation website to find the ordering link (available starting February 27) and note the following:

  • MFA graduates will purchase the master’s package, which includes a cap, gown, tassel with signet, and hood. This regalia may be picked up at the Norris Bookstore or shipped to you for an additional fee. It is yours to keep. 
  • PhD graduates will rent the doctoral package, which includes a tam, gown, tassel with signet, and hood. There also is an option to purchase fine-quality doctoral regalia. All doctoral rental regalia must be picked up in person at the Norris Bookstore. It cannot be shipped to you. Rental regalia must be returned after the hooding ceremony or the main Commencement ceremony. All rental pieces must be returned except for the tassel. 
  • No additional accessories are required to participate in the hooding ceremony. (Note: the stole option listed on the regalia website is worn by bachelor’s degree recipients in lieu of a hood.)  
  • For graduate students with financial need, please email the office of Graduation and Senior Year Experiences for information about the application process. All applications for financial assistance must be finalized by Friday, April 21.  
    • Please note: financial assistance applies to the purchase of the master’s package or the rental of the doctoral package and does not apply to purchasing the fine-quality doctoral regalia. 

Guest Tickets

You may order tickets for the TGS PhD and MFA Hooding Ceremony starting Monday, February 27. All ticket orders must be placed no later than Tuesday, May 23.

  • All participating graduates will be issued up to 10 guest tickets, the maximum number allowable. All seats are free and general admission. Please note that you do not need a ticket for yourself or your faculty hooder. Guests without tickets will not be permitted to enter the ceremony venue.
  • To order your tickets to the hooding ceremony, please click here and enter the TGS promotional code.
    • Graduates with degree conferrals of Fall 2022 and earlier will receive their TGS promotional code via email from The Graduate School on Friday, February 24.
    • Graduates with degree conferrals of Winter 2023 and later will receive their TGS promotional code via email from The Graduate School upon submission of their Intent to Participate Form.
  • All tickets will be sent to you electronically on or about Thursday, June 1 to distribute to your guests.
  • If you plan to attend this year's Commencement, those tickets must be ordered separately from those ordered for the hooding ceremony. You will receive the promotional code and ordering instructions directly from the office of Graduation and Senior Year Experiences on Monday, February 27.
  • For log-in issues or questions about your ticketing account, please contact the Athletics Department at or 847-491-2287 or 888-GO-PURPLE (467-8775).


The hooding ceremony will be livestreamed for those who are unable to attend in person. Details on how to watch the livestream are forthcoming.


Please email TGS Events & Engagement Manager Anthony Mangini at with any questions.  

Partner School PhD Ceremonies

PhD students who graduate from TGS programs that are in partnership with the School of Education and Social Policy (SESP), the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music are invited to participate in the respective partner school's ceremony instead of The Graduate School's ceremony.

Please contact your school representative below for additional details about convocation ceremonies for these partner schools:

Partner School MA, MS, and MPH Ceremonies

TGS Master of Arts (MA), Master of Science (MS), and Master of Public Health (MPH) graduates should check with their departments regarding any partner school ceremonies. 

The Family Institute Ceremonies

Graduates from the Master of Arts in Counseling and Master of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy should email Kristen Catuara, Assistant Director for Administration at The Family Institute, at with any questions about their ceremony.


Last Updated: February 23, 2023