Information for graduates

This site provides important information regarding graduation for you and your guests. Please familiarize yourself with the dates and times of all events. Should you have any questions, please contact Cindy Cheely in the Dean’s Office for further clarification.

Part of completing your obligation to the university, requires you to complete several surveys and an exit check list. These surveys will help us evaluate year dental education during your time here at VCU. The exit checklist will ensure you have completed all required tasks prior to graduation.

Military Promotion Ceremony

When: Friday, May 11, 2018
Where: Dominion Arts Center – Gottwald Playhouse 600 E. Grace Street, Richmond, VA 23219 (Map)
Time: 9:30 a.m.

On Friday, May 12, the VCU School of Dentistry will hold a military promotion ceremony to recognize students who will be commissioned into the U.S. Army, Navy and Air Force and the Virginia Army National Guard upon graduation.

VCU School of Dentistry Hooding Ceremony

When: Friday, May 11, 2018
Where: Dominion Arts Center – Carpenter Theatre 600 E. Grace Street, Richmond, VA 23219 (Map)
Time: 1 p.m. (Students are to arrive by 11:15 a.m.)
Guests: No limit on the number of guests that may attend
Parking: See information below

Guest Seating

The Carpenter Theatre will be opened for guests at 12 p.m. Tickets are not required and there is no reserved seating.


For the Hooding Ceremony, parking is available in several places near the Carpenter Theatre. Mobility impaired guests will be able to find close proximity parking in the lot across from the Carpenter Theatre on Grace Street. Visit the Dominion Arts Center web site for directions and additional parking information.

VCU Commencement Ceremony

When: Saturday, May 12, 2018
Where: Richmond Coliseum 601 E. Leigh Street, Richmond, VA (Map)
Time: 10 a.m. (Graduates are required to report at 8:30 a.m. through the 5th Street entrance)
Guests: See information on For Parents, Family Members, and Guests
Parking: See information below

**All students are required to attend both the School of Dentistry Hooding and VCU Commencement Ceremonies. Information on diploma distribution will be provided at a later time. Diplomas not picked up during the scheduled distribution will be returned to the graduation office. Students whose diplomas have been returned to the graduation office will need to contact that office to schedule a pickup time.

Commencement Exercises

The Richmond Coliseum is located at 601 E. Leigh St., Richmond, Va., 23219. Graduates, please plan to arrive by 8:30 a.m. and use the 5th Street entrance. Follow the signs located throughout the tunnel and concourse. Line-up areas are organized by school and then by degree. Commencement staff will also be on hand to help you. Line up upstairs near the 5th Street entrance. Look for signs inside and use the map to point you in the right direction. At 9:45 a.m., your faculty marshals will lead your line toward the floor entrances to await the start of the processional. At 10 a.m. sharp your marshals will lead you onto the floor and into your seats. It takes a while for all graduates to walk in the processional and get to their seats on the Coliseum floor, so please pay attention, move quickly, keep cell phones in your pockets and follow the person in front of you closely. Listen for commencement staff who will be directing the processional. Unless you have an emergency, please refrain from using your cell phone, talking or getting up from your seat once the ceremony starts. The commencement ceremony is set to conclude around noon.

If you have family attending the commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 12, you will need to provide an RSVP. Register your guests at the VCU Commencement website. Guests need to be registered no later than May 2018.

The plaza-level doors to the Coliseum will be opened for guests at 9 a.m. The 7th Street entrance is for graduates only. Tickets are not required and there is no reserved seating. Once the capacity of the Coliseum is reached, no one will be allowed admission. If guests exit the Coliseum during the ceremony, they will not be readmitted as long as the seating capacity has been reached.

Special accommodations

Sections 14L, 15L, 30L and 31L at the Coliseum are wheelchair accessible. Hearing-impaired guests may want to sit in Section 17L, where an interpreter can be seen more easily. Mobility-impaired guests and candidates may park on 7th Street at the Coliseum entrance. Graduation candidates needing special accommodations should contact Joyce Knight at Disability Support Services by calling (804) 828-1139.


For a nominal fee, parking is available through private contractors in decks and lots adjoining the Coliseum. Mobility-impaired guests and candidates may park at the Coliseum entrance on 7th Street. Visit for directions and additional parking information. Family and friends, please note that the 6th Street entrance will be open for the public/guests at 9 a.m.

Special note

The Coliseum policy strictly prohibits alcoholic beverages, balloons and/or flammables of any form being brought into the building. Be advised that the police will confiscate these items. We want you to enjoy the day, but we expect our graduates to comply with these policies for the safety of all our guests.