Commencement

Weekend Overview

Graduates, alumni and families assemble on College Hill for an immersive and exhilarating experience packed with daylong events.

Friday, May 26, 2023

Graduate Student Council Champagne Toast

7 P.M. | Starr Plaza

The Graduate Student Council invites 2023 graduates and the greater Graduate School community to celebrate the graduates' accomplishments. Hors d’oeuvres, champagne and a selection of non-alcoholic beverages will be served. Guests are welcome to celebrate up until the onset of the Campus Dance.

Campus Dance

9 P.M. | The College Green

One of Brown's best-loved Reunion and Commencement traditions, Campus Dance brings people to Brown to dance the night away under a sky lit with over 600 paper lanterns on the College Green. The evening joins together graduating seniors and their families, alumni of all ages and Brown faculty and staff. Everyone enjoys meeting old classmates, seeing favorite professors and being with friends. All family members and guests are welcome to attend. Tickets are required for all attendees and will be available through the Campus Dance website.

Saturday, May 27

Weekend Forums

Various Times and Locations

Led by faculty, alumni and distinguished guests, these academic and topical colloquia are an integral part of Commencement and Reunion Weekend. All family members and guests are welcome to attend and forums do not require a ticket. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Baccalaureate

2:30 P.M. (Estimated) | First Baptist Church in America

Baccalaureate is a multifaith ceremony for undergraduates that incorporates the many spiritual and cultural traditions of the Brown community. The ceremony starts on the College Green with a procession that leads graduates to the First Baptist Church in America. Due to limited seating capacity, only seniors will be allowed into the church. All guests and family members are invited to watch the ceremony from the College Green, where the event will be simulcast.

Graduate Commencement Reception

Time and location TBD

The graduate Class of 2023 and their guests are invited to enjoy light snacks and drinks, register to win prizes, speak with deans and staff from the Graduate School and School of Professional Studies, and celebrate the accomplishments of graduates while they enjoy some time with fellow students before going their separate ways.

Master's Ceremony

May take place on Saturday or Sunday — details to be confirmed soon

This ceremony will be livestreamed. Graduates and their guests are also invited to attend the University Ceremony on Sunday, on the College Green.

Sunday, May 28

Procession

9:45 A.M. | Faunce Arch

The Commencement procession is a joyous celebration. Candidates for degrees march across the College Green and through the Van Wickle Gates, which are opened only twice each year. Undergraduate alumni who have returned for Reunion march with their classes. Once the last person is through the Van Wickle Gates, the procession inverts and undergraduates continue down College Street with each participant applauding the others; graduate and medical students also process to their respective ceremony locations, with participants and spectators applauding the graduates.

Parents, relatives and friends of seniors are strongly advised to find seats on the College Green during the opening procession, where they can view the live simulcast of the procession. The procession is made up of approximately 6,000 participants that line the route, making photography and lines of sight challenging for guests.

Warren Alpert Medical School Commencement Ceremony

10 A.M. (Estimated) | First Unitarian Church

The medical school adjourns to the First Unitarian Church on Benefit and Benevolent streets for their ceremony.

Doctoral Ceremony

10:30 A.M. | Location TBD

Doctoral graduates process to Pembroke Field for their ceremony, which will be available via livestream. After the ceremony ends graduates and their guests are invited to find seats on the College Green for the University Ceremony.

Master's Ceremony

May take place on Saturday or Sunday — details to be confirmed soon

This ceremony will be livestreamed. Graduates and their guests are also invited to attend the University Ceremony on the College Green.

College Ceremony

12:15 P.M. (Estimated) | The First Baptist Church in America

The senior class assembles on the lawn of the First Baptist Church in America for the official conferral of undergraduate degrees at the College ceremony. After the ceremony ends, the seniors walk up the hill and take seats on the College Green for the University Ceremony. Family and friends should remain on the College Green during the College ceremony, where large screens offer a continuous view of the proceedings.

University Ceremony

1:15 P.M. (Estimated) | The College Green

Undergraduate, graduate and medical students unite on the College Green for this ceremony. President Christina H. Paxson presides, senior orations are delivered and honorary and symbolic degrees are awarded.

Departmental Ceremonies

2:30-4:45 P.M. (Estimated) | Various Locations

All degrees are symbolically conferred during the University Ceremony. Separate departmental ceremonies for each academic department follow the main ceremony and provide a more intimate atmosphere for families and graduates. Many departments also welcome graduate students.