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University of Michigan School of Information


UMSI Commencement Day procedures

All graduating UMSI students may attend the University-wide Commencement and UMSI Graduate Recognition Ceremony/Reception. PhD students may also attend the Rackham Graduate Exercises. E-mails will be sent periodically each semester with more information on the UMSI ceremony/reception for that term.

Essential details for Spring 2020 graduating students

Tickets are NOT required for your guests for the UMSI ceremony. 

Doors to Hill Auditorium will open at 3:15 pm for graduates and guests. 

All graduates must check-in. Check-in is 3:15-3:45 p.m. in the lower lobby of Hill Auditorium. Please arrive at Hill Auditorium no later than 3:30 p.m. to check-in. Plan to be seated in the auditorium no later than 3:50 p.m. Check-in is required. If you do not check in, it is not guaranteed that your name will be read during the recognition portion of the program. Guests do not need to check-in.

The ceremony will begin at precisely 4 p.m. Parking will be very difficult, so it is important you leave plenty of time to get to Hill Auditorium. (See Parking section below.)

Follow the signage to the lower lobby. You will receive a card with the pronunciation of your name and your seat assignment. After you receive your card, go directly into the auditorium where staff can help you find your seat. Hold on to your card; you will bring it onto the stage with you.

When it is time to line up, staff will direct you toward the stage. When it is your turn to cross the stage, go to the podium, hand your card to the reader (Nicole Ellison for PhDs, Paul Resnick for MHIs and BSIs, or Beth Yakel for MSIs) and walk across the stage as they read your name. Dean Tom Finholt will be at the other end of the stage to congratulate you and deliver your scroll. PhD grads will receive another email from me with additional instructions. 

Caps and gowns are not required, but many graduates choose to wear them. More instructions about how to wear your cap and gown can be found here. There will be bins at the reception to donate your caps and gowns after the ceremony. Please consider doing this to help future graduates! 

UMSI will be livestreaming the ceremony on our YouTube channel for any guests who are unable to attend. A recording will also be available there immediately after the ceremony. Watch the ceremony at

All guests are invited to celebrate at the reception on Ingalls Mall (north of Hill Auditorium) following the ceremony. 

For additional information, please visit the Academic Attire and Tickets/RSVP pages.

Special accommodations

If a graduate or guest requires special accommodations during any graduation events, please contact the UMSI Office of Student Affairs at Please note that strollers are not allowed inside Hill Auditorium.

Guest accommodations

Information about lodging and restaurants in the Ann Arbor area is available online. Please keep in mind that hotel reservations begin to fill up, up to a year before the graduation date. Reservations for restaurants on the day of graduation also begin to fill up about a year before graduation.

Parking for graduation

Guests should park in the three closest parking structures: on Thayer Street, on Fletcher Street, and at Palmer Commons. These are University structures and parking is free for commencement. Please see the Central Campus Parking Map for more details. In addition, the city-owned Maynard Street structure is nearby.

Visa letters for international guests

Graduates whose family members need to apply for a visa so that they may attend graduation may request a letter of invitation. Please refer to this link regarding invitation letters. Students can find the template for the letter in the Preparing for Commencement link.

Please contact the UM International Center with any questions.

Winter Graduation

The School of Information does not hold a formal graduation ceremony in December. December graduates and guests are welcome to attend the UMSI Spring Graduation Recognition Ceremony.

New alumni: start here

Visit the UMSI alumni web page to join Alumni Connections or find local UMSI alumni in your area! New graduates are eligible for a free year of membership with the U-M Alumni Association.