FAQs for Degree Candidates
How do I get my cap and gown? Caps, gowns, and tassels will be available at the bookstore the week of May 12. Regalia is furnished by the College at no charge and may be kept as souvenirs for this memorable occasion.
Please note: In order to participate in Commencement, all degree candidates must log into the Babson Portal where there will be a designated portlet for the Commencement Clearance Process. Here, candidates will view and complete the requirements necessary to pick up their cap and gown and participate in the ceremony. Requirements include fulfilling financial obligations, surveys, laptop return, etc. This site will be made available to degree candidates approximately two weeks before Commencement.
Where do I pick up my tickets? Tickets for the family and friends of undergraduate degree candidates can be picked up in Cruickshank Alumni Hall beginning Monday, May 5 through Friday, May 9, and Monday, May 12 through Friday, May 16. Once the Commencement Clearance Process is complete, eight tickets will be given to each undergraduate candidate for seating under the tent.
Tickets are not required for the master’s degree ceremony.
What should I wear? For women, appropriate attire might be a dress or skirt and blouse with low heels. The ground in and around the tent is uneven and it’s easy to stumble.
For men, a shirt and tie are appropriate with dress slacks. If it’s a warm day, do not wear a jacket. The robe you will be wearing can get quite warm, and a jacket might become uncomfortable.
Caps should be worn straight and parallel to the ground. Bobby pins can be used to hold caps in place.
Where do I go on Commencement day? Degree candidates assemble in the Webster Center on the track—see below for when. Signs will be placed around the track indicating your position in line. Candidates will form a double line behind the appropriate sign and will be checked in by marshals. Candidates MUST be in appropriate order. You will then be led out of the Webster Center by the chief marshal, governance, faculty and staff to the tent on the Upper Athletic Fields.
Undergraduate degree candidates must assemble in the Webster Center on the track no later than 8:45 a.m.
Master’s degree candidates must assemble in the Webster Center on the track no later than 1:30 p.m.
When and where will the class photo be taken? The undergraduate degree candidate class photo will be taken in the Staake Gymnasium in the Webster Center at 8:30 a.m., just prior to assembling on the track for the procession.
The master’s degree candidate class photo will be taken on the steps of Knight Auditorium at 1 p.m., just prior to assembling at the Webster Center on the track for the procession.
When and where do I get my Honors Tassels? Honors tassels will be distributed on Commencement day at the lineup area in the Webster Center.
Where will my parents and friends sit? Parents and friends will be seated in sections behind and beside the candidates. Degree candidates will occupy the left and right center sections of the tent. Please inform family that it tends to be cool under the tent.
Is there provision for individuals with orthopedic/mobility-related impairment? If any member of your party has an orthopedic/mobility-related impairment, please have them ask public safety officers on campus to direct them to the designated drop-off point. A golf cart will be available to take your guests to the tent. The golf carts accommodate up to three people. Babson hosts will be on duty under the tent to assist in any way they can. Do not hesitate to ask them for assistance. There is a reserved section for wheelchair-bound users. One other guest will be allowed to sit with them in this location.
Is there provision for baby carriages? Children are certainly welcome; however, accommodating carriages is difficult since the aisles cannot be blocked due to fire laws. There will be several rows of double width for carriages. If one of your guests plans to attend with a baby carriage, please instruct them to locate and sit in this wide row area. Hosts will be on site to help with seating and we ask that you comply with their efforts to ensure that everyone is seated comfortably.
Am I allowed to bring my children on stage when accepting my diploma? Again, children are welcome to the ceremony, however, due to safety precautions, graduates are not permitted to carry, or be accompanied by, children on stage.
What if it rains on Commencement day? Commencement will be held under the tent, rain or shine, in order to accommodate a larger audience. Participants and guests should come prepared if inclement weather is expected. In the event of an extreme weather emergency, please refer to the Commencement homepage, or the Babson College Information Line, 781-239-INFO (4636). Regardless of weather conditions, Babson will provide a live broadcast of the ceremony in Sorenson Theater for guest viewing. In addition, the ceremony can be viewed online. Please visit the homepage for more information.
Where can I order invitations/announcements? Personalized announcements/invitations may be purchased online from Balfour, at www.balfour.com or by calling 1-877-225-3687. When purchasing, be sure you order announcements for the appropriate ceremony (undergraduate versus graduate), and allow three weeks for delivery. Please note: Announcements are not considered tickets and will not gain you access under the tent.
Will there be a photographer at the ceremony? Three professional photographers will take pictures of each graduate; first before going on stage, second when they cross the stage and third, as they come off the stage with diploma in hand. We ask guests to remain in their seats. Within approximately two weeks, proofs of the photos and a form to place an order will be mailed by the photographer, Grad Images. Babson College serves only in the capacity of providing the photographer. All questions regarding photographs should be directed to the studio directly at Grad Images, 1-800-261-2576.
What is a Special Goodbye? The Special Goodbye is a Babson tradition that allows faculty, staff, students, parents, and friends to send congratulatory notes and cards to undergraduate degree candidates at the ceremony. All messages should be in a sealed envelope, with the first and last name of the candidate, and clearly marked Undergraduate School. The Events staff will place the Special Goodbyes on the candidate's chair before the start of the ceremony. The deadline to submit cards and notes is April 25, 2013.
Is there a program following the ceremony? A light reception will be held in the Webster Center immediately following the exercises. You and your guests are cordially invited to attend.
Is the Bookstore open on Commencement day? The Babson College Bookstore, located in the Reynolds Campus Center, will be open on Commencement day from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will also be an annex on the Upper Athletic Fields selling diploma frames and Babson merchandise until 3:30 p.m.
In what ways is Babson contributing toward making a green Commencement? Babson has taken the following strides to go green at Commencement:
- All degree candidates will be wearing eco-friendly caps and gowns made from 100 percent post-consumer, recycled plastic bottles. They are made of fabric spun from molten plastic pellets and take an average of 23 bottles to make each gown.
- Babson diplomas are printed on cotton parchment, which is 100 percent cotton rag paper made from recovered tree-free fibers through cotton ginning waste and textile cuttings. The manufacturing plant is located in Massachusetts.
- Every attempt is made to use recycled paper for our printed programs, booklets, tickets, and other materials.
- We have greatly decreased our paper usage by using e-communications for the majority of our communications regarding Commencement.
- The cups, plates, napkins, and cutlery used at the receptions are biodegradable.
- We offer water stations around the Commencement tent with biodegradable cups to decrease the amount of water bottles.