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Barnard Commencement 2014

Welcome to the Barnard Commencement website.  With graduation rapidly approaching, we hope the information that follows will be useful in planning for this exciting time.   The site will be updated during the next few weeks, so please check back occasionally for additional details as they become available.  A formal invitation to Commencement will be sent to parents in April. 

Most students who participate in Commencement graduated in February or will be graduating in May.  Students who intended to complete the requirements in May and find that they are unable to do so, should be sure to inform Dean Friedman.

The Deans and the Registrar are reviewing records of the seniors expecting to graduate in May and will contact students having problems with academic progress. Other problems may arise as reports come back from the departments concerning the fulfillment of major requirements.  There is usually a relatively small number of major-requirement problems, but students should check their campus mailbox and Barnard email account regularly.

Students with incompletes from last fall should finish the work immediately and file a "Work Completed" form at the Registrar's office.  All reasonable attempts will be made to obtain the grade by graduation.  Taking an incomplete always entails a risk, and if the instructor does not submit a grade by May 21, the degree will be conferred on the next degree conferral date after the Registrar receives the grade. Students should not take incompletes, even early incompletes, and expect to graduate in May.  Incompletes in courses taken this year will have to be finished by September 2, 2014, or whatever date before then that the instructor may set.  The rule applies to all incompletes, including the senior seminar.

October candidates who have been accepted by a graduate or professional school or have obtained employment requiring a bachelor's degree, must keep us informed of progress on unfinished work.  We are often asked to confirm a student’s status.

Quicklinks to Important Information:



1:30 pm - 3:45 pm, REHEARSAL.

All candidates participating in Commencement are required to attend the rehearsal in the Barnard gymnasium (caps and gowns are not worn).  A group photo will be taken at the beginning of rehearsal.


9:30 am-11:00 am, BACCALAUREATE SERVICE.   

Tickets are not required. 

This is a nondenominational service in St. Paul's Chapel, on the Columbia University campus.  Candidates from the undergraduate divisions of the University and their guests may attend.  Barnard students who plan to attend should assemble in front of Barnard Hall at 8:45 am and will march in procession to St. Paul's Chapel at 8:55 am.  Caps and gowns are worn.   Graduates are asked to register for the service.

11:00 am – 1:00 pm, RECEPTIONS

Preceding the Barnard ceremony, departmental receptions will take place at various locations on the Barnard campus, which will give parents and guests an opportunity to meet members of the faculty and administration.  Please check the commencement website in mid-May for reception locations. 


At approximately 1:00 pm, students and faculty will board buses which will take them to the ceremony at Radio City.  Caps and gowns are to be worn.  


Further information about where guests assemble before doors open will be posted in the coming weeks.


Tickets are required (see “Tickets” below).

At this ceremony, Barnard degree candidates are individually recognized.  The Presentation of Degree Candidates is the more intimate of the two commencement ceremonies and culminates with each Barnard degree candidate crossing the stage to receive congratulations from President Debora Spar. (Degrees are officially conferred on Wednesday at the University Commencement.)  Read about the 2014 recipients of the Barnard Medal of Distinction.


10:30 am – 12:00 noon, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY COMMENCEMENT EXERCISES, Columbia campus.

Tickets are required (see “Tickets” below). 

Degrees are officially conferred on the candidates of each of the divisions of the University.  The Columbia gates will open at 8:30 am, and guests are advised to be in their seats by 10:00 am, if not earlier.   Further information about the Columbia ceremony is available at University Commencement

Candidates will assemble in the Barnard gymnasium at 8:45 am and go in procession across Broadway to the Columbia ceremony at 9:00 sharp.  There is no assigned seating. 



Baccalaureate Service:  Tickets are not required, but indoor seating is limited. Additional tented seating will be available on the Chapel lawn.

Barnard ceremony:   Participating seniors will receive seven tickets in early May. 

University Commencement:  Each candidate is eligible to register for up to a maximum of four ticketswith her UNI and password, no later than May 9.  Candidates will be able to print or download these tickets to a web-enabled device immediately upon registering.


Students who filed Dean Friedman’s online questionnaire may pick up a cap and gown from the Columbia Bookstore, at no charge.  Candidates must present their student ID at that time.  Students who have not filed the questionnaire must contact the Commencement Coordinator, Lillian Appel, lappel@barnard.edu, for a letter enabling them to pick up attire.


Diplomas for the graduates whose records are cleared and whose accounts have no holds will be available in Barnard Hall following the Columbia ceremony on May 21, from 1:00 to 2:00 pm.  After 2:00 pm the diplomas will be available at the Registrar's window.  Diplomas not picked up within a few weeks of graduation will be shipped by Fedex to the address on the online diploma name card. Since there is a very short period of time between the end of the semester and graduation, it is virtually impossible to clear all of the records in time.  We ask those students affected for understanding.  Diplomas will be released just as soon as the records are cleared, often within twenty‑four hours.  Diplomas and final transcripts cannot be released, however, if a student's account with the University is not paid in full or if other financial requirements have not been fulfilled. The Registrar's office maintains a list of all such holds, which may be found in Student Services Online.  It’s the student's responsibility to check whether her account is clear. 


The list of candidates’ names and majors, as they will appear in the commencement program and read at the ceremony, should be checked for errors or omissions.  Please report these to Lillian Appel, lappel@barnard.edu.  Only first (or middle) and last names will be announced and printed in the program.. 

A phone line has been set up to allow students to record their name for Dean Hinkson.  Please call 212-854-7518, and follow the prompts. The deadline to record names is Monday, May 6.  It will not be possible to take care of this matter at rehearsal.   (If the mailbox is full, students should wait a day and try again.)


Please visit the Barnard website for a list of area hotels.  You may also wish to visit the Columbia website for additional listings (see “Alternate Accommodations”).  Some offer discounted rates to Barnard and Columbia University guests. 

Barnard’s “Graduation Housing for Parents” offers a limited number of dormitory rooms ($150/room/night, with a 2-night minimum requirement) for Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights, May 17-21 (checkout on May 22), on a first-come, first-served basis.



The Office of Office of Disability Services  at Barnard College (212-854-4634, ods@barnard.edu) is available to assist in coordinating a variety of disability-related accommodations for guests with disabilities. Please contact the Office of Disability Services no later than 4 pm on Friday, May 9, 2014 to discuss any needed accommodations. Both the Barnard reception and the ceremony at Radio City Music Hall are wheelchair accessible.  


Arrangements have been made with photography and video companies to take footage of the ceremony and of your daughter crossing the stage.

PhotographyGradImages is the official photographer for the Barnard ceremony.  Please visit their website for information about what they offer.

Videos may be ordered online from Collegiate Video.  (Please be sure to use Order Code #012372B when prompted.)


Personalized graduation announcements may be purchased through Jostens.


Parking—both near Barnard and Radio City Music Hall-- is extremely limited, and the use of public transportation is strongly encouraged.  Please visit the Barnard website for a listing of local garages near the Barnard campus.


Please visit the Barnard website for information about getting to campus.