Safety Requirements

Brown is committed to planning and hosting our 2021 Commencement ceremonies in a manner that is healthy and safe, and fully aligned with the University’s COVID-19 Campus Safety Policy.

Plans for graduation ceremonies for all colleges and universities in Rhode Island require approval from the state, and Brown’s Commencement ceremonies fully comply with the State of Rhode Island’s rules and regulations governing events.

Requirements for Graduates to Attend Commencement

Safety regulations establish a cap on the number of participants in graduation ceremonies, and registration is required to attend. All graduating students will receive information on how to register for their ceremonies. Please note these requirements:

  • Graduates of the College and Graduate School must be actively enrolled in and compliant with Brown’s COVID-19 testing program. In order to attend students must be in testing compliance, including having had a recent negative test. Due to health and safety considerations there can be no exceptions to these requirements.  
  • Remote students returning to campus for the ceremony must complete the required steps for returning to campus even if they are vaccinated.
  • Graduates must pre-register for the ceremony to receive an assigned time slot and seating section with designated entry and exit points. After registering, students will receive information on when to attend the Commencement kickoff, taking place the week of Commencement. Registered students will be assigned a specific day where they will pick up their regalia and wristband, which will allow them to gain access to the College Green during their designated ceremony. No admittance to the Green will be allowed without a wristband and Eventbrite registration confirmation.

Requirements for Faculty, Staff and Vendors to Attend Commencement

To ensure gathering sizes within state requirements, only faculty and staff approved to participate may attend Brown’s 2021 Commencement ceremonies. Please note these requirements:

  • Brown University faculty and staff must be enrolled in Brown’s COVID-19 testing program and approved both to be on campus and also to attend the ceremonies.
  • All faculty, staff and vendors approved to participate will be required to follow the University’s COVID-19 Campus Safety Policy.
  • Staff volunteers approved to participate will be assigned to work in pods in an effort to reduce contacts.

Ceremony Logistics: Entry, Exit and Crowd Control

Separate ceremonies are planned for the College, the Warren Alpert Medical School and the Graduate School without overlap to reduce the number of people gathering on campus at any one time. Please note these logistics apply to the College and Graduate School only: 

  • The College Green will be divided into socially distanced seating sections that will be monitored by staff.
  • Entry to and exit from the College Green will be staggered based on assigned time slots. 
  • The ceremony location and surrounding areas will be closed to the public.
  • Only individuals approved to be on campus with the required proof of access will be able to enter the ceremony location and surrounding areas.
  • No large bags or backpacks allowed.

Family and Guests Participation Online

Families and guests are not permitted to attend 2021 Commencement ceremonies in person due to public health protocols and Rhode Island rules and regulations governing events. Families should not travel to campus with the intent to attend or observe, as access to the areas surrounding the in person ceremonies will be limited to eligible students, faculty, staff and vendors with approval and proof of access.

  • Events will be streamed live online.
  • Families and friends are invited to participate virtually by sharing photos, videos and well wishes on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter using the hashtags #Brown2021 and #BrownU.

Important Health and Safety Reminders

To ensure the health and safety of all participants, please note that public health protocols remain in place. Please remember to:

  • Stay home if showing any symptoms of COVID-19
  • Wash and/or sanitize hands frequently
  • Wear a well-fitting mask properly at all times
  • Remain 6 feet apart at all times and avoid congregating in groups.