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How Long Is A Graduation Ceremony?

by Debamalya Mukherjee
How Long Is A Graduation Ceremony

You have spent the last few years entering and exiting the same building with your friends and teachers. While you are lost in all the experience and the knowledge, time flies by pretty fast. Now, you are asking yourself, how long is a graduation ceremony?

If your graduation ceremony is close by, you must be anxious to know about this event. As a ritual of growing up, it’s a pretty significant event. Therefore, keep on reading to learn more about it.

How Long Is A Graduation Ceremony?

How Long Is A Graduation Ceremony
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So how long does a graduation ceremony take? Typically, it will last for a maximum of 2 to 3 hours. Since there are lots of students graduating every year, the ceremony happens in an orderly fashion, organized by staff members. However, do not mix this answer with how long graduation take, which can take around 4 years.

What Happens At A Graduation Ceremony?

What Happens At A Graduation Ceremony

How long is a graduation ceremony depends on what activities will be conducted. All graduation ceremonies are conducted in an orderly fashion.

1. First, Find Your Seat

First, Find Your Seat

The first step of your graduation ceremony is to get yourself seated. Just like finding seats in a movie theatre, you need to find your seats. This is because every student graduating has specific seats assigned to them.

You might want to sit beside your best friends, but that’s not how it works in a graduation ceremony. If you are lucky, then you might just get seats next to them. Otherwise, simply bear through the entire ceremony.

To find your seat, just look for the name tags on each seat. They are big enough to be spotted easily. In addition, some high schools might attach the student’s name cards to their seats.

2. The Commencement Of Academics

The Commencement Of Academics

The stage that you see in front of you has seats reserved only for the senior teachers, academics, staff, board members, and the Chancellor or Dean. When they enter the scene and take their respective seats, the students will have to pay their respects by standing up till they get seated. Therefore, ensure that you have done your squats before because you might have to stand for 15 to 20 minutes.

3. Welcoming You All

Welcoming You All

After the Chancellor or Dean of your high school or university gets seated, you may finally sit down and rest. Soon, the Vice Chancellor or the President of your institution’s board will inaugurate this event through a warm welcome speech. Don’t expect any confetti or loud music here. You have to bear with how long is a graduation ceremony.

4. Award And Degree Presentation

Award And Degree Presentation
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Now, we come to the juiciest (often boring) part of the entire graduation ceremony. Here, degrees and awards are all given to the graduating students.

However, the order in which the awards will get presented will vary from one institution to another. In some cases, higher degrees (Masters, Doctorates) will get their degrees first, followed by the other degrees (Honors, General). Moreover, this order often gets reversed in some institutions.

In addition, the award presentation might be done department wise too. All you can do is see for yourself which order they are following. However, one thing remains the same in all graduation ceremonies – students of whichever department or degree gets called up on the stage in alphabetical order.

5. Time To Hit The Stage

Time To Hit The Stage

So the time has come for you to finally hit the stage? I know anxiety can be a real thing since I was super anxious when my name was called out. However, it’s more chill than you think it is.

When your name gets called to welcome you on stage, always remember to keep your head held high. After all, it’s a proud moment for you! Here’s a quick rundown of what happens when the Chancellor calls your name:

  1. When the Chancellor calls your name, walk up to the stage. Also, remember to keep your name card in your hands.
  2. After getting up on the stage, hand your name card over to the stage manager.
  3. Then, proceed to walk up to the Chancellor (confidently) and shake his or her hand. Also, remember to shake with your right hand.
  4. Since your left hand is lazying around, use it to hold your graduation certificate. This might come in a cylinder.
  5. Now, as you are receiving the cylinder, pause for a moment and click a picture with the Chancellor. Do so while shaking his or her hand.
  6. Also, don’t forget to enjoy all the cheers coming from your family and friends!

After you get down from the stage and walk back to your seat, move your tassel to the other side. This is a sign that means you have finally graduated!

6. The Guest Speaker’s Thoughts

The Guest Speaker’s Thoughts

After all the certifications are given out to all graduates, the guest speaker for the ceremony will take the podium. Here, they will give a speech about the importance of being good humans and excelling in all academic and extra-curricular fields. While this speech is meant to be motivational, there is a 90% chance that it will be super boring, and you might fall asleep too. When it comes to falling asleep, try not to do so. While you might not be able to help it, it’s disrespectful to do so.

7. The Valedictorian

The Valedictorian

On behalf of the graduates, the most accomplished student is given the honor of giving the Valedictorian address. Here, the student representative gives a speech about their experiences in the institution over the years. In addition, they also thank their parents and teachers for supporting them, and their friends too.

Now, this can be an interesting one since it can go both ways. It can either be a snoozefest, or it can be a laugh-out-loud party. Also, the names of some friends of the representative might get called out. However, this can turn out to be an embarrassment for some if they say something funny.

8. Final Goodbyes

Final Goodbyes

Finally, as the ceremony nears its end, all the students are asked to stand up and throw their graduation caps high up into the sky. Since this might be the last time you see some of your friends, make the moment count with embraces. Also, do the same for your family members as well. They will always support you through thick and thin.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) :

Questions have been asked by graduates regarding how long does a high school graduation ceremony take. Here are their answers:

Q1. Is There A Dress Code For Graduation?

Ans: Yes, each graduation ceremony has a dress code. Here, you are expected to dress up in all formal. In addition, don’t forget your graduation gown and graduation cap as well.

Q2. Do You Give Gifts At Graduation?

Ans: While you are not obliged to, you can present gifts to your friends and teachers. Some popular graduation gift ideas are:

• A collage of memories captured together (commonly seen).
• Smartphone covers and cases.
• Something personalized that the person needs.

Q3. What Should Parents Wear On Graduation Day?

Ans: Parents of the graduates are expected to wear formal clothing. Wearing additional accessories and makeup is completely optional.

Throw Them Caps High!

So how long is a graduation ceremony? It typically lasts for 3 hours at the maximum.

As an important event that you should cherish all your life, these 3 hours often become the final moments with many classmates. Therefore, walk up the stage with your head held high! Also, remember to thank your friends, teachers, and family members for their support!

If you have your graduation ceremony soon, tell us in the comments how it went!

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