On your graduation day University of Greenwich

Planning your day

Please read the information provided in the drop-down sections below for what to expect on the day of your Awards Ceremony, including important information on arrival times and collecting your ticket and any purchased guest tickets.

When should I arrive at the venue?

Please arrive at the venue at least one and a quarter hours before your ceremony is due to begin. This will give you enough time to collect your ticket, any purchased guest tickets, your pre-ordered gown and have photographs taken.

There are public car parks in the vicinity of the venues. Regrettably, there is no on-site parking. Please do not underestimate the traffic in the Greenwich and Rochester areas, and allow ample time for travelling and finding a parking space.

More information can be found in the section Ceremony locations in Preparing for graduation.

What should I do when I arrive?

On arrival, you should make your way to the university's Tickets and Enquiries Desk where you collect both your guest and your own seat tickets. You will then be directed to collect your gown and to the official photographers.

To ensure the smooth running of the ceremonies, it will be necessary to section off areas for ceremony-related activities, in order to assist us to manage the flow of large numbers of people throughout the day. These areas will be clearly defined, and it will only be by everyone observing these areas that the day will be a success!

Please be seated 20 minutes before your ceremony is due to commence. This also applies to your guests. At both venues it takes a considerable amount of time to seat graduates and guests, so please adhere to instructions from stewards. Arrangements will be made to seat guests with mobility problems before the congregation is allowed to enter the Chapel / Cathedral.

IMPORTANT: Rochester Cathedral dates back to the 7th Century. Therefore there are large pillars incorporated within its construction. This in some cases restricts full viewing however we do provide monitors in restricted viewing areas. Please be aware that we cannot be held responsible if guests are seated in one of these areas as all guests are seated on a first come first serve basis. It is advisable to arrive as soon as comfortably possible for your guests bearing in mind there is no shelter and very little seating in the grounds of the Cathedral.

Guests will be seated separately from the graduates in the nave, transepts or upstairs in the gallery.

The use of cameras and camcorders is permitted during the ceremonies, but out of consideration to others, guests MUST remain seated at all times.

What happens at the ceremony?

The ceremony will start promptly at the allotted time. Before commencement, the Master of Ceremonies will make a number of important housekeeping announcements. The ceremony starts with the entry of the Academic, Civic and Chancellor's/Pro Chancellor's/Vice-Chancellor's processions.

The ceremony commences with a short welcome speech followed by an address by the President of the Students' Union. The main ceremony address follows.

Each graduate seat is numbered. It is essential that you sit in the seat that corresponds with your numbered graduate ticket.

After the speeches, a Faculty representative will be called to present the graduates. At the same time, members of the Awards Ceremonies Team will guide the first graduates up to be presented, checking names and their order en route.

When the Faculty representative announces your name, please walk across the dais where the Chancellor/Pro Chancellor/Vice-Chancellor or Deputy Vice-Chancellor will congratulate you on your achievement with a handshake. You will then be presented with a certificate by a representative from the School. Stewards will guide you back to your seat. The Vice-Chancellor then confers the awards.

The Processions leave the Chapel/Cathedral, followed by the graduates and then the guests. Stewards direct the graduates and guests to the refreshment areas.

When can I expect to receive my certificate?

Your certificate and academic transcript will be posted to your mailing/permanent address held on the university's student record system 4 to 8 weeks after you receive your results letter. You are able to check and update your address details on BannerWeb via the student portal. Please ensure the university has your correct mailing/permanent address.

Please check the Conferments pages for more information, including collecting or not having received your certificate.

How long does the ceremony last?

Each ceremony lasts for approximately one hour, depending on the number of graduates being presented.

What happens at the end of my ceremony?

The ceremony will end with the departure of the Chancellor's, Pro-Chancellor's and  Vice-Chancellor's, Civic and Academic Procession. Graduates will follow on and process out to the reception area, where a celebratory drink will be offered, and you will have the opportunity to meet friends, family, colleagues and guests.

Please remember to keep your ticket with you for access into the reception. 

Who can I contact on the day?

For all queries relating to Awards Ceremonies, contact the Awards Ceremonies Helpline.

Awards Ceremonies Hotline

Tel: 020 8331 8772 Telephone icon

Can I bring my children?

Although children are welcome on site for graduation celebrations, it is the university's policy not to admit children under the age of five into the ceremony venue itself.

Degree ceremonies are quite long (about an hour and a quarter, further extended by the time sitting in the venue before the ceremony starts) and are not designed to appeal to young children.  We find that even well-behaved children find it difficult to cope with this and to remain quiet throughout the ceremony.

Please note that we are not able to provide any childcare facilities on the day and that a parent, guardian or family member must remain with children at all times.

All children aged 5 and over must be accompanied by an adult guest and have a seated ticket.