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A line of graduating students walking, with the first woman shaking hands with people in the audience.

Commencement will take place on Saturday, May 16, 2020 beginning at 11:00 am and ending by 1:30 pm in the quadrangle next to the gymnasium at the Haverhill Campus.

Please note: Individuals who graduated in August 2019, December 2019, and those who have petitioned for May 2020, and August 2020 are encouraged to participate.

Commencement Day

There is NO rehearsal for Commencement. You must arrive for pre-ceremony activities no later than 10:00 am on May 16, 2020. Report to the Sports and Fitness Center and assemble in the gymnasium by program. Signs will be posted. All guests must be seated by 10:30 am The Processional begins at 11:00 am promptly. All students attending the Commencement ceremony will receive a diploma cover at the ceremony. Your actual diploma will be mailed by July 7th.

Academic Requirements

Spring 2020 grades will not all be processed until after the Commencement ceremony on May 16. Therefore, the final evaluation of your graduation applications will not occur until the beginning of June. Diplomas will be mailed by July 7th to all of those who have met their academic and program requirements, and have maintained a GPA of 2.00 or above.

Honors Status

Students who have petitioned to graduate for May 2020 should be aware that your honors designation, as it appears on the graduation program, is reflective of your final Fall 2019 GPA.

Cap, Gown, Hood and Invitations

The cost of the cap and gown is $29. Your graduation packet, which includes a cap, gown, tassel, hood and invitation, will be available for pick-up at both the Haverhill Campus bookstores only, starting Monday, April 6, 2020. Hoods must be returned following the Commencement Ceremony.

*Honors cord for $5.50.

Haverhill Bookstore Hours

Monday through Thursday: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
Friday: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
(Closed on Saturday and Sunday)

Invitations and Guest Seating

One invitation will be given to each student when cap, gown, and hood are purchased. You and your guests do not need an invitation to attend. However, to ensure seating for all guests, please limit the number of guests that you invite to attend the ceremony. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Guest should be seated by 10:30 am. Students will begin processing into the tent at approximately 11:00 am.

Graduate Names

When we call your name during the graduation ceremony, we would like to ensure that we pronounce it properly. For example: Raul Gonzalez: rah-OOL gon-SAH-les Ngoc Nguyen: nahk nuhWEN or sounds like “knock” “WIN” Sophia Lamagna: so-FEE-uh sounds like “lasagna”.  Please contact us by May 1st with the correct phonetic pronunciation of your name.  Call 978-556-3716 or 978-556-3974, or email Olivia Kobel at

Graduate Photos

Essex Commencement Photos by Hockmeyer Studios will be photographing graduates as they receive their diplomas and as they exit the stage. Information has been mailed to the home address of all potential graduates. There are several package options available to choose from.

After the ceremony a proof photo will be sent to all graduates. Any graduate who did not preorder the photos will have an opportunity to place an order. For additional information or questions, contact Essex Commencement Photos at or 978-388-9832 or 603-974-0198.

Accommodations / Special Seating

If you or any of your guests require assistance or special seating, please let us know so that we may accommodate you. Please call 978-556-3974 or 978-556-3716 before May 8th.

Please make prior arrangements to have your children accompanied by an adult while attending Commencement.

For more information, please contact Enrollment Services at 978-556-3974, or 978-556-3716.

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