Quick Facts

  • Upcoming Date: Friday, June 17, 2022
  • Time: Ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. Guest seating will open at 10 a.m.
  • Location: Oregon Convention Center, Portland Ballroom, 777 NE Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd, Portland, OR 97232
  • Livestream Information: Graduates and guests who can’t attend in person are invited to participate remotely via a livestream of the event. Graduates who opt in to participate remotely will have their names read during the presentation of degree candidates. Zoom, the hosting platform, is easy to use, but requires a few simple steps for set-up. Watch this quick tutorial video, so you can have devices prepped and ready when the ceremony begins. Click the button below on the day of the ceremony to watch the event.

Grad Checklist

Graduate Timeline

8:45 a.m.         Graduates arrive – go to check-in table first

9:00 a.m.         Line up for dress rehearsal

9:15 a.m.         Dress rehearsal

10:00 a.m.       Guest seating begins

10:10 a.m.       Graduate class photos

10:50 a.m.       Processional lines up – same order as for rehearsal

11:00 a.m.       Commencement ceremony begins

12:30 p.m.       Approximate end time for the commencement ceremony

Day-of Information

  • Please come with your regalia steamed and ready-to-wear. Do not press the regalia with high heat, as it can damage the material. You will pick up your honors cords, veteran’s cords, and/or master’s degree stoles, if applicable, when you check in.
  • We recommend wearing comfortable shoes that are easy to walk in. There are 2-3 stairs up to the stage.
  • Coffee, tea and water will be available in the staging room.
  • We will have assorted pastries and fruit available in the staging room. However, we strongly recommend eating a substantial breakfast to keep you going throughout the ceremony!
  • You may park in the underground parking garage at the Oregon Convention Center. One parking voucher per graduate will be distributed by email prior to the ceremony.
  • COVID-19 Safety. If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, or if you test positive, please stay home and email [email protected] We can include you to participate remotely, so that you can still be recognized during the ceremony. Please do not come in person if you are sick.


Students in the college of chiropractic are eligible to participate in commencement if:

  • They are on track to complete their degree requirements during the term that commencement is held;
  • The degree requirements were met in a previous term; or
  • They are on track to complete their degree requirements within two academic terms following commencement.

Students in the college of graduate studies are eligible to participate in commencement if:

  • They are on track to complete their degree requirements during the term that commencement is held; or
  • The degree requirements were met in a previous term.

Students who are concurrently enrolled in the Doctor of Chiropractic degree and the Master of Science degree in Sports Medicine should follow the eligibility criteria for students in the college of chiropractic.

Participating in the commencement ceremony does not signify completion of your academic program. Questions about your program completion requirements can be sent to [email protected].


Graduates and faculty, please arrive at the ceremony with your regalia steamed and ready-to-wear. Do not press the regalia with high heat, as it can damage the material. You will need to put on your regalia as soon as you arrive to the staging room at the convention center.

Graduates will pick up honors cords, veteran’s cords, and/or master’s degree stoles, if applicable, at the check-in table upon arrival.

We recommend wearing comfortable shoes that are easy to walk in. There are 2-3 stairs up to the commencement stage.

Please review these videos showing how to wear master’s and doctoral regalia prior to the ceremony.

Required Safety Precautions

  • UWS will follow the venue requirements put forth by the Oregon Convention Center (OCC), and those requirements may change. If there are changes to the OCC requirements, we will share that information with graduates as soon as we are aware of it, as well as post it on the commencement webpage.
  • Currently, face coverings are optional inside the Convention Center. UWS will have extra disposable masks available at the check-in table for anyone who wishes to use one.
  • Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or has symptoms should participate in or view the ceremony remotely. See above for information about the livestream. Do not attend in-person if you are not feeling well.
  • Graduates should immediately email [email protected] if their plans for attending the ceremony change.

Parking, Transportation and Travel


  • Graduates and employees will each receive one (1) parking voucher for the Oregon Convention Center. The voucher will be emailed to participants closer to the ceremony date.
  • All other parking is the responsibility of the other drivers.
  • Details for the OCC garage can be found here.

Public Transportation

  • Graduates may request two one-way MAX tickets in lieu of a parking voucher. Arrange to pick up tickets by contacting [email protected].
  • Stop ID 8341 goes eastbound from the convention center, while Stop ID 8376 goes west-bound
  • From the Portland International Airport, there are transportation options including shuttles (many airport hotels offer free services), taxicabs and ride service options (e.g. Lyft and Uber), as well as the MAX light rail. For more information, check here.


There are many hotels to choose from in the Portland area. To help with your selection, please visit for information on Portland hotels.

Alumni Reception and Other Activities

Alumni Welcome Reception

Graduates – you’re invited to the 2022 UWS Alumni Welcome Reception!

To celebrate and support your transition from student to alumni, University of Western States is hosting an alumni welcome reception, Thursday, June 16, 4 – 6 p.m., in the atrium of the UWS campus.                   

Family and friends of the graduates are welcome to attend this informal reception. Drop-in any time and enjoy light hors d’oeuvres, complimentary professional headshots for graduating students, and a small gift welcoming you to the alumni community from the UWS alumni relations team. 

For those visiting from out of town, here are some resources to help you explore the surrounding area.


We are pleased to announce that Nathan Long, EdD will be the keynote speaker at the June 2022 commencement ceremony. Dr. Long currently serves as the president of Saybrook University, a regionally accredited degree-granting graduate-level institution. Saybrook is also affiliated with the Community Solution Education System which contains four other affiliated institutions in higher learning. Dr. Long earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Performance, trombone from the University of Kentucky in 1996. He earned both his Master of Education and Doctor of Education in Educational Studies, Educational Foundations from University of Cincinnati in 2000 and 2003. We are delighted to welcome him as our keynote speaker. Read more about Dr. Long.

Commencement Information

Graduates – please review the Graduate Guide for detailed information about commencement. 

Guests – please review the Guest Guide for detailed information about commencement.  

Please email [email protected] if you have questions that are not answered in the guides

FAQs for Spring 2022

Guest information 

We are delighted to welcome guests to the June 2022 commencement ceremony! Guests do not require tickets to attend, and there is not a specific limit on the number of guests that graduates can invite. Guests are required to follow the COVID-19 safety precautions outlined in the “Required Safety Precautions” section.

Gifts for graduates 

Gifts for Graduates Guests are welcome to bring gifts for graduates; however any distracting items or items that will obscure other guests’ views will need to be located at the side or back of the ballroom. Please note that helium-filled balloons are not permitted in any part of the Oregon Convention Center (OCC). No exceptions. 


Two professional photos will be taken of you during the commencement ceremony. You can purchase copies of these photos a few days after the ceremony at Photos from throughout the day will also promptly be posted on UWS social media. Check them out here later on the day of graduation. Photo 1 – While shaking hands with Dr. Brimhall as he hands you the diploma cover. Photo 2 – After you leave the stage stand in front of the background holding your diploma for a ¾ length photo. 

Program Completion Fee 

In summer 2021, UWS discontinued the program completion fee that was previously assessed to cover some of the costs associated with commencement, including the printing and mailing of diplomas and the purchasing of regalia. This fee was previously assessed in a student’s final term at UWS. Moving forward, in lieu of the fee, those students who are participating in commencement will be responsible for purchasing their own regalia through a third party. Information about ordering regalia will be shared with students as they approach graduation. Other costs associated with program completion and commencement will come from the university operational budget.