Individual Recognition Ceremonies
Besides University Commencement on the National Mall, other ceremonies take place to honor graduates of specific schools, programs, organizations and departments. If you have questions about any of these individual events, the host will be able to best answer them.
Graduates from all degree types, schools and organizations come together with administrators, faculty, staff, families and guests to celebrate their accomplishments at University Commencement on the National Mall. Attendees will hear remarks from the Commencement speaker and honorary degree recipients, as well as the student speaker. Degrees are conferred during this ceremony and tickets are required to attend.
Alternative Site Plan
University Commencement is held rain or shine. However, if an unexpected situation develops, you may have to follow GW’s Alternative Site Plan. Current information on the status of events is available 24/7 from May 11-May 17, 2015 through Campus Advisories (202-994-5050). Public service announcements will be carried by local media.
Status of Commencement
You can find current information on the status of Commencement Weekend 24/7 from May 11 to May 17 through Campus Advisories or 202-994-5050. If the Alternative Site Plan is put into place or there are any other last minute changes, public service announcements will be covered by local media.
Official GW Hotels
There are many alternative options to stay in across the city and larger area, including some lodging options that are closer to campus. Be sure to ask any hotel if they offer a discount for GW’s Commencement.
We encourage you to take the Metro to University Commencement on the National Mall. You can use the yellow, green, orange, blue and silver lines. The most convenient exit stations are the Smithsonian Metro Station and Federal Triangle Metro Station. Use Metro’s trip planner and take travel time into consideration.
Driving & Taxis
Parking is extremely limited around the mall and we encourage you to use the Metro. Taxis are available throughout the city and should be able to get you to the National Mall. Pricing depends on distance and the number of people. They are usually available after the ceremony concludes.
We urge guests to take the Metro, walk or take taxis to get to Commencement ceremonies. If you do drive, parking is not guaranteed. However, all GW parking garages are wheelchair accessible. While you may be redirected to seek parking in public locations off campus, GW Transportation & Parking Services has more information. If your car is towed from campus, contact the GW Police Department.
You can walk to the National Mall and should plan accordingly for the time it takes to get there. There are also various Capital Bikeshare stations around the city, including near our campus and the mall.
Graduates with Wheelchairs
All campus buildings are wheelchair accessible but if you have additional needs, contact University Events as soon as possible to make the necessary arrangements for University Commencement. For needs at individual recognition ceremonies, contact your school directly.
Guests with Wheelchairs
At University Commencement on the National Mall there will be a section of reserved seating for guests with wheelchairs or severe mobility issues. Commencement staff will be on site to assist with seating, if needed. While all campus buildings are wheelchair-accessible, contact your graduate’s school for additional needs.
Sign Language Intrepreters
Sign language interpreters are provided at University Commencement on the National Mall. If you need to be seated near one, contact University Events to make arrangements. Interpreters will be provided at other events as needed. To make a request for a specific celebration, the Special Events Interpreter Form should have been completed in April. Contact schools directly for information on services at their ceremony.
Accessibility for all members of the community, including graduates and guests, is a priority for GW. For specific needs at school ceremonies, contact the school directly. Disability Support Services can provide assistance for things like interpreters and you can find information through Transportation & Parking Services. Please note that all campus buildings are wheelchair accessible.