2021 Commencement Ceremonies

Commencement FAQs

Virginia Wesleyan University is moving forward with five in-person Commencement Ceremonies this May. This decision comes following Governor Ralph Northam's announcement on plans to allow the celebration of Commencement Ceremonies with up to 30 percent of the stated capacity of an indoor facility.

Commencement Ceremonies for the VWU Class of 2021 are scheduled as follows. Graduates who are unsure which academic school their major falls within can reference the school organization chart. Please note the following information is subject to change based on state regulations for COVID-19.

Baccalaureate Service

Friday, May 7
7:00 p.m., Virtual Event
View the Program

Baccalaureate speaker
Dr. David R. Black

Livestream Information
Baccalaureate will be a virtual event and will be webcast on the VWU Digital Broadcasting Network. Viewers may follow along with the event program.

Commencement Ceremonies

Saturday, May 8
View the Program
Birdsong School of Social Science: 9:00 a.m.
Joan P. Brock School of Mathematics and Natural Sciences: 11:30 a.m.
Susan S. Goode School of Arts and Humanities: 2:00 p.m.
D. Henry Watts School of Professional Studies: 4:30 p.m.

TowneBank Arena, Jane P. Batten Student Center
Virginia Wesleyan University
5817 Wesleyan Dr., Virginia Beach, Virginia 23455
Campus Map/Parking


Sunday, May 16
View the Program
Virginia Wesleyan University Global Campus: 4:00 p.m.

TowneBank Arena, Jane P. Batten Student Center
Virginia Wesleyan University
5817 Wesleyan Dr., Virginia Beach, Virginia 23455
Campus Map/Parking


Commencement Speaker
Dr. Timothy Carter, President of the environmental organization Second Nature.


Livestream Information
Each Commencement Ceremony will be livestreamed on the VWU Digital Broadcasting Network. Viewers may follow along with the event program.


Photography and Video
Lifetouch Special Events provides photographs of each graduate who crosses the dais during Commencement. Photos may be purchased at events.lifetouch.com/vwu. Questions can be addressed to specialevents@lifetouch.com or 800.505.9496 Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-6 p.m. EST, or online at contact.lifetouch.com. There is no obligation to purchase photos. Candid photography will also be available for download on the University Flickr page. Archived videos of each ceremony will be available through the VWU Digital Broadcasting Network.


Commencement Guest Registration
Graduates will be limited to two guests each. Graduates will submit guests' names during the purchasing of a cap and gown. Guest names must be submitted in advance in case the Virginia Department of Health needs to perform contact tracing following the event. All adults and children (regardless of age) will be required to register for the ceremony. For added caution, the University will require all guests, including children aged five and under, to wear face coverings on campus.

No food or drink will be permitted inside TowneBank Arena. Guests must adhere to all posted signage about proper mask wearing and social distancing, etc. Those not adhering to VWU's posted policies will be asked to leave.


Caps and Gowns
Graduates can purchase their caps and gowns (a.k.a. regalia) and Ultimate Graduation Package here. Graduates should be prepared to submit the names of their two guests at the time of purchase. Orders received by April 23 will be available for pick up in the Office of Finance and Administration from May 3-7 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.


Commencement Announcements
Announcements for each ceremony are available for purchase through the University Store website. Diploma frames and class rings are also available.


Commencement Rehearsal
Rehearsals will be on Thursday, May 6 in the CMAC at the following times. Graduates in the following schools are strongly encouraged to attend rehearsal.  
 
Birdsong School of Social Science: 11:45 a.m.
Joan P. Brock School of Mathematics and Natural Science: 12:45 p.m.
Susan S. Goode School of Arts and Humanities: 1:45 p.m.
D. Henry Watts School of Professional Studies: 2:45 p.m.
 
Please note that there will not be a rehearsal for VWU Global Campus. VWU Global Campus graduates can sit-in on one of the other rehearsals, if desired.


Commencement FAQs