Two women dressed in regalia at their commencement

Congratulations, Class of 2024!

Congratulations Graduates!

National University invites you, your family, and friends to celebrate your remarkable accomplishment on Saturday, May 18, 2024, at Petco Park.

Please review the important information necessary for your special day. Questions should be directed to [email protected]. It is our sincere desire to provide a memorable event that showcases your outstanding achievement.

Streaming will go live about 15 minutes before the ceremony. The ceremonies are scheduled as follows:

Download a digital copy of the 2024 Commencement program here.

Important Deadlines and Information for Graduates

To be eligible to participate in the commencement ceremony, students must have completed all program requirements or be within 3 classes of program completion 45 days before the day of the commencement ceremony.  
Doctoral students currently in their DIS sequence must successfully defend their dissertation by April 3rd to attend the commencement ceremony.
*Students who participated in Grad Walk 2024 are not eligible to participate in commencement.
Deadline Date:  04/03/2024
Commencement Ceremony Registration
A commencement ceremony registration must be completed on the Marching Order website to participate and walk in the ceremony. Students must register with Marching Order at least 45 days before the day of the commencement ceremony.

A Marching Order link will be emailed to eligible students in their NU student email or primary email address.
Due to space limitations, the event will only be available to the first 1500 eligible students (per ceremony). Failure to register for the ceremony by the deadline will result in students being unable to participate in the commencement ceremony.
If you did not receive an invitation to register and are eligible to participate in the graduation ceremony, please email us at: [email protected]
Deadline Date:  04/03/2024
Legal Name Change
Students’ legal names will be used on Commencement Day.  
To request a change to the name used in your Marching Order registration for commencement, please email [email protected]
Deadline Date:  04/03/2024
Caps & Gowns are required for all students. To order your regalia, click on the link below: Academic Regalia by Jostens (Cap & gown, diploma frames and announcements)

· Military students may elect to wear their dress uniform in lieu of regalia.
Deadline Date:  04/10/2024
Tickets are required for all students and guests over the age of 2.
· Students can reserve a maximum of 10 guest tickets.
· Tickets may be ordered via Marching Order website after successfully registering for the commencement ceremony.
Deadline Date:  04/10/2024


10:00 am Ceremony Timeline

College of Law and Public Service, School of Health Professions, JFK School of Psychology and Social Sciences, and College of Business, Engineering and Technology

  • 8:00 am – Gates Open
  • 9:15 am Graduates must be checked in
  • 9:45 am – All guests should be seated
  • 10:00 am – Ceremony
3:00 pm Ceremony Timeline

Sanford College of Education and School of Arts, Letters and Sciences

  • 1:00 pm – Gates Open
  • 2:15 pm – Graduates must be checked in
  • 2:45 pm – All guests should be seated
  • 3:00 pm – Ceremony

Graduate Information

  • Graduates must enter through the Gaslamp Gate
    • Look for “Commencement Graduates Enter Here” sign.
  • Tickets are required to enter the ballpark.
    • You can provide a printed ticket or, the QR Code from your phone.
  • Graduates will receive a card that lists their name as it will be announced and displayed during commencement. Do not lose your card.  
  • Honors Cords can be picked up at the Grad Check-In area.
    • Honors Cords are based on the following eligibility:  
      • Undergraduates with a GPA of 3.5 or higher
      • Graduate and Doctoral students with a GPA of 3.85 or higher
  • Once check-in is complete, Graduates will be guided to an assigned seating area. Graduate seating is assigned by college and degree level.
  • We recommend wearing comfortable shoes.
  • Your official diploma will be mailed to you approximately six weeks from your conferral date. If you have not received your diploma within this timeframe, please contact [email protected].

Graduate Accommodation Requirements

If you are a graduate attending commencement and require accommodations, please email Student Accessibility Services ([email protected]) with your request. Please allow as much notice as possible (no later than April 8, 2024) – last minute requests cannot be guaranteed.

Guest Information

  • Tickets are required for all guests over the age of two.
    • Guests under the age of two, who do not sit on their own, do not require a ticket.
  • Guests may enter at either Home Plate Gate or Park Blvd Gate.
    • You can provide a printed ticket or, the QR code from your phone.
    • Strollers can be checked at any Guest Entry Gates, but guests must retrieve stroller from the same gate it was checked in.
  • There are no assigned seats for guests, however, special seating can be arranged for those who need assistance. Petco Park Accessibility Guide

Planning for the Day

Petco Park is a major league baseball stadium and a wonderful venue for our Commencement. It is also a large space which often requires walking, climbing stairs, and/or standing for long periods while graduate and guests find their seats and take part in the festivities. Please make sure to plan ahead for those in your party who may have mobility concerns.  Some recommendations include:

  • Arrive early.
  • Review information on parking and stadium maps. Note, parking fees are subject to change without notice.
  • Bringing your own mobility aids (wheelchairs, walkers, canes, etc.).

: Petco Park offers limited access to mobility devices in the case of emergencies. If you believe you or another guest may require the use of any type of mobility aid, please bring the device with you to the event. Local Options for Mobility Aid Rentals include:

Interpreting/Captioning Services

To make our commencement accessible to as many persons as possible, real-time captioning and American Sign Language interpreting will be provided via the video monitors for the duration of the event.  If you require additional interpreting or other communication aids in navigating the stadium, please make sure to arrange individual services with your preferred provider. Also, consider reviewing the Petco Park Accessibility Guide prior to attendance. Local Options for Personal Interpreting/Captioning include:

Petco Park Information

  • Petco Park’s Bag Policy only authorize the following types of bags: single compartment clear plastic bags not exceeding 12″ X 6” X 12″, infant and medical bags, and clutches and purses no larger than 5″ X 7″. For a full disclosure, please visit the following:  Petco Park – Entry Policies | San Diego Padres (
  • Balloons and noise makers are prohibited.
  • No outside food & beverages.
  • Petco Park information can be found here: Petco Park | San Diego Padres (

Academic Regalia & Vendor Information:

You can opt to purchase regalia through another third-party vendor (ex. Amazon, Etsy). Reminder, caps, and gowns must be black. For a list of tassel and hood colors by school please click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Event

Commencement is a one-time, celebratory, regional ceremony.

Conferral is the documented date when the university awards your degree.

A Graduation Application is not needed to participate in the Commencement Ceremony this year. However, students should still submit one if they are within 3 courses of completing degree requirements.

Saturday, May 18th, 2024 – Petco Park Stadium
100 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 92101

  • 10 AM CEREMONY – Schools Included:
    • College of Law & Public Service
    • School of Health Professions
    • JFK School of Psychology & Social Sciences
    • College of Business, Engineering, and Technology (formerly School of Business and Economics & School of Technology and Engineering)
  • 3 PM CEREMONY – Schools Included:
  • Sanford College of Education
  • School of Arts, Letters, & Sciences

*Please arrive at the venue at least an hour and a half before your ceremony time begins to ensure you are checked in and your guests are seated on time.

Yes, Doctoral students will be hooded during the ceremony.  

No. Students who wish to participate must be present at Petco Park.

Yes, the link to view the live stream will be available on the commencement website two days prior to the event.

Not currently. The Graduation department will communicate with students about future commencement events.

The university does not provide hotel or transportation accommodations for the event. It is recommended that students search for lodging availability closest to the venue.

Eligibility & Registration

Wednesday, April 3RD, 2024 by end of day.

  • Students must have completed all program requirements OR
  • Be within 3 courses of degree completion, 45 days before the day of the commencement event
  • Doctoral students must have defended their dissertation by 04/03/2024
  • Students who participated in Grad Walk 2024 event are NOT eligible to participate
  • Certificate programs/Credential-only programs are NOT eligible to participate
  • A Graduation Application is not needed to participate in the Commencement Ceremony this year. However, students should still submit one if they are within 3 courses of completing degree requirements.

Eligible students will be sent a registration email from Marching Order, which includes the registration link. Email is sent from [email protected] Please be aware that email systems may filter the message into spam or junk folders.

Information will be sent to the primary email address on file.

Registration emails started going out to eligible students on 02/07/2024. The Graduation team will continue to audit students’ files for eligibility and will continue to send registration invitations throughout the next few months.  

Invitations will only be sent to those who meet the eligibility criteria at the time of review. For example, if you will be eligible after completing the March course, your invitation will be sent out after the course has ended and a grade has been posted.

If you have had your degree conferred or are within 2 courses of completion (all grades posted) and still haven’t received an invitation, please contact [email protected]


Wednesday, April 10TH, 2024

  • NOTE: Jostens regalia orders placed after this date will NOT arrive in time for the ceremony!
  • Caps and gowns MUST be black.
  • NU Stole is not required. Students may choose to purchase their own creative stoles or wear their honor stoles.
  • Students may decorate their cap if it is age-appropriate for the event.
  • Graduate and Doctoral regalia includes a hood, colors vary by program.
  • Eligible students will receive a military and/or honors cord.
  • MILITARY STUDENTS: may wear their military uniforms in lieu of a cap and gown if they choose.

Students will pick up their academic/military cord(s) at graduate check-in on the day of Commencement. Staff will have a list of eligible students.

Undergraduate (Associate/Bachelor) tassel colors by school:

  • College of Law & Public Service (COLPS) – Science Gold
  • JFK School of Psychology &  Social Sciences (SOPSS) – Navy Blue
  • Sanford College of Education (SCOE) – Light Blue
  • School of Arts, Letters, & Sciences (SOALS) – Gold
  • School of Health Professions (SOHP) – Salmon
  • College of Business, Engineering, and Technology (COBET) (formerly School of Business and Economics & School of Technology and Engineering) *
    • School of Business & Economics (SOBE) – Drab
    • School of Technology & Engineering (SOTE) – Orange

Graduate student tassel colors:

  • Masters – Black
  • Doctorate – Old Gold

Graduate hood colors:

No, students can opt to purchase their regalia through another vendor (ex. Amazon, Etsy). Reminder, caps and gowns must be black.

Jostens will have a booth at the Commencement Ceremony but will only carry a limited supply of Regalia. We highly recommend grads order their regalia by the April 10 deadline.

Ticketing Information

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024

  • Eligible students will receive a registration link to Marching Order via email, to register for the event and reserve their tickets.
  • Each student is allotted 10 guest tickets.
  • Tickets are required for all guests over the age of 2.

Students who complete their registration will receive a unique ‘Grad Pass’, which is their “ticket” to enter the venue on the day of the event.

Graduates are limited to 10 guest tickets. Once Registration has closed, students can contact [email protected] to inquire if additional tickets are available.

Once students have completed their registration and ordered their guest tickets, they can return to to retrieve their tickets.

Legal Name Changes and Diplomas

  • Class-based students should submit a Biographical Change eForm to the Records Department via their Student Portal to update their name change.
  • 1:1 students must contact [email protected] for name changes.

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024

No. Diplomas are not given to students at the commencement ceremony. For information about Graduation visit

Graduate and Guests Accessibility Accommodations

Please refer to the Petco Park Accessibility Guide: