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Guest and Graduate Attire

What to wear and when

Guest Attire

Most events are designed for graduating students and their families. We encourage you to dress comfortably for the weekend, taking weather conditions into account. There are no formal expectations for what guests should wear during the weekend.

  • Most guests tend to dress up more (what might be worn to a religious service, for example) for the Baccalaureate Service and the main Commencement ceremony.
  • The air conditioning will be on in William & Mary Hall and the arena can get quite chilly!  We recommend that you dress in layers or bring a sweater.
Graduating Student Attire

We suggest graduating students wear business or business attire under their regalia. Learn about acquiring regalia.

  • Mortar boards (caps) may not have objects or inappropriate messages attached.
  • Graduates may want to dress in layers for events in William & Mary Hall in case the arena is uncomfortably cool.
No Regalia Worn

Baccalaureate Service*
Saturday Departmental Receptions **
Alumni Induction Ceremony

Wear Caps/Gowns (no hoods)

Candlelight Ceremony (tassel should be worn on the right side of the mortar board)

Full Regalia (caps, gowns, hoods)

Walk Across Campus
Main Commencement Ceremony

* Only class officers wear regalia to the Baccalaureate Service
** Students should check with their department /program