General Information: 2020 Ceremony

We are hosting an in-person Commencement for the Class of 2020 on Saturday, June 12, 2021, at 10 a.m. in Kemp Stadium. Livestreaming will be available for those family members unable to attend (check the Commencement homepage as the date nears).

Commencement Ceremony Information

Health & Safety

Commencement will remain a masked and socially distanced event and we ask participants and attendees to respect these safety precautions during post-commencement outdoor gatherings on campus as well.

Admission to Commencement

Wristbands are required to enter Kemp Stadium on the day of Commencement. Children under the age of two, who will be lap sitting, DO NOT require a wristband. Please coordinate with your student, as he or she will be given three wristbands for the ceremony. Please note that wristbands are non-transferable and local public health density restrictions do not permit us to offer more than three wristbands per student.

Livestream

The in-person Commencement ceremony for the Class of 2020 will be livestreamed online for those family members unable to attend. The link to the YouTube Premiere will be made available in the days preceding the ceremony and will go live on Saturday, June 12 at 10 a.m. (Pacific Daylight Time).

Seating

All attendees will be required to wear masks and all seating will be socially distanced. The doors will open at 9 a.m. No one will be admitted before then. Everyone needs to be seated by 9:45 a.m. for Commencement to begin at 10 a.m. sharp.

Cushions can be purchased at the Bookstore kiosk prior to the ceremony. No strollers, umbrellas, balloons and signs bigger than 24" x 36" will be allowed inside the stadium.

Flower Leis

A beautiful tradition! Single flower leis available for presale $35 pus tax in the Graduation 2020 catalog at www.oxybookstore.com

Order by Tuesday, June 8, 2021.  Pick up at the Oxy Bookstore pop-up booth near the Kemp Stadium entrance on Saturday, June 12 from 8 am - 11 am, or in the Oxy Bookstore from 11 am - 2 pm.

Pets

Please note that NO pets are allowed in Kemp Stadium (except for seeing-eye and K-9 assist dogs). Comfort animals are not allowed.

General Parking

Campus parking will be available for guests attending the Commencement ceremony. General parking is on a first-come, first-served basis. Campus Safety officers will guide guests to the designated parking areas the morning of the event.

Photography

An independent photographer will be at Commencement to photograph each graduate at the moment the diploma is presented. This service will be provided at no additional cost to the graduate. Several weeks after Commencement a link to the digital images will be sent to your student’s email address.

Clothing Suggestions

The terrain of the campus requires considerable walking to and from the stadium and parking lots. Comfortable shoes are a must. Because Kemp Stadium is an open-air venue, please use discretion and check weather reports as conditions in the stadium may be uncomfortable for younger children and the elderly. If the weather is unseasonably warm, you will appreciate having water, a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen during the ceremony as most seats are in direct sun. On the other hand, should the weather be overcast, you should also bring a jacket. Please note that NO shoes with stiletto or kitten heels are allowed on the stadium field level. 

Special Assistance

Early arrival is essential for the best choice of seats in Kemp Stadium, but it is especially important for individuals with special-assistance needs to arrange to be seated no later than 9:30 a.m. A limited number of seats are set aside on the stadium field level for people who need special seating.

  • Seats for those requiring special assistance will be assigned on the day of Commencement on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • You do not need to fill out a form to request special seating.
  • Occidental College is unable to furnish wheelchairs. If you are coming from a distance and are unable to bring your wheelchair, rental arrangements are possible but must be made in advance. Please contact Laura Crescenzo at (323) 259-1346 or crescenzo@oxy.edu for assistance.

ADA Parking

ADA parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis, but you must display your official DMV handicapped placard if you park in an ADA parking space on campus. When you arrive, you will be directed to the closest handicapped parking area by a Campus Safety officer. Shuttles will be available from the ADA parking areas to take you to the north-west entrance of Kemp Stadium on the field level and your return trip back to the ADA parking areas at the conclusion of the Commencement exercises.

Shuttles will run on designated routes from 8 a.m. until 9:30 a.m., and from the conclusion of Commencement exercises until 12:30 p.m.

If you have any questions regarding ADA parking, contact Campus Safety at (323) 259-2599.

Travel & Transportation Information

Airports

There are two main airports that serve Occidental. The closest is the Hollywood Burbank Airport, which is less than a half-hour from campus. Los Angeles International Airport is about an hour's drive from campus, depending on traffic. Transportation is available from each airport to hotels and other accommodations in the Pasadena area.

Hotel Information

Local hotel accommodations may be found in Eagle Rock, Glendale, Pasadena, and South Pasadena. Many hotels are offering special discounts for Occidental College visitors. Please inquire about discounts when making your reservation. 

View the hotel information page. 

Local Dining Options

There are a wide variety or restaurants to try in the surrounding area. Please call for reservations and more information.

View the dining information page.

Maps & Directions

View directions to campus and download the campus map.

 

FAQs for Graduating Seniors

Where do I park?

All graduates and guests may park in the Booth parking lot and the Admisions parking structure. ADA parking is also available in the Booth parking lot. 

If I’m not driving, where should I get dropped off?

The rideshare drop-off area is at Mullin Grove (Campus Ave and Alumni Ave). 

What should I do once I arrive on campus?

All graduates must arrive by 8 am and check-in at Bell Field parking lot for the processional line-up. 

What do my guests need to attend the ceremony?

All guests must have their wristbands to attend the in-person ceremony. All graduates will receive three wristbands in their regalia bags, and must get these wristbands to their three guests prior to arriving on campus. Guests will not be permitted to enter Bell-Field parking lot during the processional line-up, so graduates must get their guests their wristbands prior to arriving on campus. No guests will be admitted without their wristbands, no exceptions. 

How can I watch the ceremony if I’m not on campus?

The ceremony will be livestreamed on Youtube. The link to the YouTube livestream will be made available in the days preceding the ceremony and will go live on Saturday, June 12 at 10 a.m. (Pacific Daylight Time).

What do I wear?

Commencement regalia (your cap and gown) are required to participate in the ceremony. Please note that NO shoes with stiletto or kitten heels are allowed on the stadium field level. 

How early can guests arrive and where should they park or get dropped off?

Guests may arrive as early as 8 am. The stadium doors open at 9 am.  All guests must be seated by 9:45 am. 

Guest parking is available in the Booth parking lot and Admissions parking structure. ADA parking is also available in Booth parking lot. The rideshare drop-off area is at Mullin Grove (Campus Ave and Alumni Ave). 

General parking is on a first-come, first-served basis. Members of the Campus Safety Department will guide guests to the designated parking areas the morning of the event.

What time should I get to campus? What’s the latest I can get dropped off?

All graduates must arrive by 8 am. 

Why should I arrive at 8 am if the ceremony doesn’t start until 10?

We are asking graduates to arrive at 8 am to have their portraits taken and to line up for the processional. Graduates will be permitted to remove their masks for the portrait and will be sent a link to download their portrait and order prints in the weeks following commencement. Make sure that your contact information is up to date. This is offered at no additional cost to the graduate. Please report to the Bell Field parking lot, across from Rush Gymnasium. 

What are the mask/social distancing guidelines before we enter the stadium? What if I’m vaccinated?

Regardless of vaccination status, all graduates and their guests are required to be masked and maintain social distance at all times while on the Occidental College campus. 

Can I bring a water bottle/bag?

Water bottles will be provided at the event. Bags are not permitted.

How long will the ceremony last?

The ceremony will last for approximately one hour and 45 minutes. 

Where should I tell my guests to meet up afterward? Can they come down to the field after the ceremony?

Guests will be directed to exit in sections and directed to the Academic Quad. Guests are not permitted to walk on the field or remain in the stadium when the event ends. At the end of the ceremony, graduates will exit through the main entrance and be directed to the Academic Quad to meet their guests.

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