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Divinity School

Friday, May 8, 2020

Main Commencement Ceremony

9:00 am, Alumni Lawn
Graduates arrival time: 8:25 am

Divinity School's Act of Worship and Diploma Ceremony

10:30 am, Benton Chapel


Graduates from August 2019December 2019 and May 2020 are eligible to participate in Commencement ceremonies on May 8, 2020. This includes the Main Ceremony on Alumni Lawn, followed by the Divinity School's Act of Worship and Diploma Ceremony in Benton Chapel. You will receive email messages from both the University Registrar and the Divinity School about confirming your attendance and other important information. Messages will be sent to your permanent (non-VU) email address as specified on your intent to graduate form. Please reply to all messages when requested. The Divinity School will continue to contact graduates until we receive a response. 

A reception honoring graduates will be held in the Divinity School's Reading Room following the Act of Worship and Diploma Ceremony. All graduates are invited along with their family and guests. 

The best way to find information and stay up-to-date on day of changes is to download the Vanderbilt App for Apple or Android phones. Be sure to turn on notifications for last minute alerts of potential venue changes due to inclement weather.



All graduating students must order and wear regalia (cap, gown, hood) in order to participate, and are responsible for ordering it through Vanderbilt University.

Please note:  The deadline for ordering regalia is April 3, 2020.  

Students must pick up their regalia at the upper level of Barnes and Noble at Vanderbilt, located at 2525 West End Avenue, across from Centennial Park, on Wednesday and Thursday, May 6th and 7th, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm. Please bring a photo ID, or allow someone to present your Vanderbilt ID to pick up your regalia on your behalf.   Regalia will not be available on Alumni Lawn .

Main Commencement Ceremony

The Main Ceremony takes place on Alumni Lawn (Memorial Gymnasium in case of severe weather, see Commencement app). Divinity School students should arrive by 8:25 am. where they will line up by degree. The procession begins promptly at 9:00 am.  When released from the Main Ceremony, Divinity School students should walk to Benton Chapel for the Act of Worship and Diploma Ceremony (please allow 15 minutes).  Additional instructions and maps can be found on the Vanderbilt Commencement website.

Diploma Ceremony

All Divinity School graduates will receive their diplomas at the Act of Worship and  Diploma Ceremony that directly follows the Main Commencement Ceremony. The diploma ceremony begins promptly at 10:30 am with graduates arriving at 10:15 am.


All graduating students and faculty should assemble in the hallway leading to the courtyard  by 10:15 am. Students will process into the chapel alphabetically by degree.


A professional photographer takes photos as graduates shake hands with the Dean on stage. As a courtesy to all in attendance, please ask your guests to refrain from advancing to the front of the stage area to take photos. After the ceremony, the stage is available for additional graduate and guest photo opportunities.


Benton Chapel is located at 411 21st Avenue, South. Guests requiring assistance may enter at the ground-level entrance and take the elevator to Benton Chapel. 


Parking for all guests is available at Wesley Place Garage.