Winter 2017 Commencement Information

Congratulations on your upcoming graduation! Celebrate your achievements and share the joy with family and friends.

  • Winter 2017 Ceremony Information

    Commencement Schedule & Details


Thursday, December 21, 2017


5 p.m. Baccalaureate Liturgy (Mass and Hooding Ceremony), Our Lady of Victory Chapel

  • 4:15 p.m. Students gather for Baccalaureate Liturgy lineup, CdC 2nd floor, by Center for Women

7:30 p.m. Commencement Ceremony, The O'Shaughnessy

  • 6 p.m. Students gather for Commencement ceremony lineup: College for Adults students in Frey Theatery; College for Women students in Rehearsal Hall, Music Building; Graduate College students in Recital Hall, Music Building.

The Commencement Ceremony will last approximately two hours. A sign language interpreter will be provided.

Please join us for a reception immediately following the ceremony in Rauenhorst Ballroom, 3rd floor, Coeur de Catherine. Tickets are not required. However, on your Ticket Request Form, please indicate the number of people in your party (including yourself) that will be attending.

Students and families of all faiths are welcome and encouraged to attend.

All graduating students participating in the Baccalaureate Liturgy (Mass and Hooding Ceremony) will be dressed in their academic gowns and process together into Our Lady of Victory Chapel.

Incorporated into the Baccalaureate Liturgy is a tradition known as the Hooding Ceremony. During the Hooding Ceremony, College for Adult and College for Women students will receive a special blessing and place their graduation hoods upon each other.

Note: Graduate students do not participate in this Hooding Ceremony, as they are hooded on stage in The O’Shaughnessy during the Commencement ceremony. Graduate students are still welcome and encouraged to process into the chapel and sit with other graduating students.

All graduating students will be individually recognized as they process out of the Chapel. Students consistently describe this tradition as one of the highlights of the Commencement events.

If you or your guests plan to attend, please complete the Baccalaureate Liturgy section on the Ticket Request Form so that we can plan accordingly. Tickets are not required, but as seating is limited, we request that each graduate limit their invitations to the Baccalaureate Liturgy to four guests.

A sign language interpreter will be provided.

Students are invited to serve as readers and eucharistic ministers during the Baccalaureate Mass. Those interested should contact the Campus Ministry Office at or 651.690.6724.

  • tickets

    Order tickets by November 17.

    RSVP for yourself and your guests by Friday, November 17 at 4:30 p.m. by submitting a Ticket Request Form.

    Completing this form reserves your spot for graduation (or tells us you’re not coming), reserves seats for your guests, and lets us know of any special seating needs you or your guests may have. Each graduating student is guaranteed three guest tickets.

    Please fill out the Ticket Request Form even if you do not plan to attend Commencement.

Tickets are not required for guests or graduating students for the Baccalaureate Liturgy (Mass and Hooding Ceremony) or for the Reception.

Assigned Seats in the O’Shaughnessy
Seating assignments for guests are determined by lottery and are reserved seats. To be eligible for the lottery, you must complete the Ticket Request Form by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, November 17.

Graduates submitting a Ticket Request Form after the deadline cannot be guaranteed tickets inside The O’Shaughnessy for their guests.

If tickets for The O’Shaughnessy remain after each student receives their guaranteed tickets, those tickets will be distributed one at a time through a lottery conducted by the Student Center & Activities Office.

Tickets are required for all children present. Due to the length and nature of the Commencement Ceremony, guests are discouraged from bringing young children into The O’Shaughnessy.

Overflow Seating in Coeur de Catherine
The University provides overflow seating in the Pulse and Dining Room (first floor of Coeur de Catherine), where the ceremony will be telecast live. These locations are appreciated by older and younger guests who are not able to sit for long periods of time and prefer to move around during the ceremony.

No tickets are required for the overflow seating.

Please note that the Dining Room will be open and serving food from 4:30–7:30 p.m. and the Pulse will serve food until 10 p.m.

Space is provided on the Ticket Request Form to indicate seating needs for:

  • Guests with disabilities (using a wheelchair, walker, unable to climb stairs, visual or auditory impairment, etc.). Wheelchair seating in The O’Shaughnessy is limited and there is no elevator.
  • Guests that should not be seated together.

Be sure to submit your Ticket Request Form no later than 4:30 p.m. on Friday, November 17 to ensure that these seating needs can be met.

After you have received your ticket packet, please call The O’Shaughnessy (651.690.6701) if you have specific questions regarding handicap access in the building.

December 5
For those attending Rehearsal, tickets will be available for pickup at The O’Shaughnessy Auditorium immediately afterwards. If you are unable to attend, please see below.

December 6–20
St. Paul students can pick up tickets at the Coeur de Catherine Information Center (open daily from 7 a.m. to midnight) beginning Wednesday, December 6.

Minneapolis students can pick up tickets from Aram Ghomi in the Counseling and Student Development Office, Education Building 359 (open M–F, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.), beginning Wednesday, December 6. If you are unable to pick them up during this time, contact Stephen Pearce at to arrange pickup.

December 21
On the day of Commencement, all tickets will be available on the St. Paul campus from the Coeur de Catherine Information Center.

One hour before the ceremony, tickets will be moved to the O’Shaughnessy ticket window.

Tickets that are not claimed 20 minutes into the ceremony will be released to the general public. Please ensure that you or your guests pick up your tickets before this time.

Note: In the interest of time and tracking, tickets cannot be distributed through campus or U.S. mail.


    Order your academic garb by December 8.

    The deadline to order academic garb is Friday, December, 8. Only students who have been cleared to participate by the Registrar’s Office can order garb.

All garb ordering is done online.

Your garb package will include everything you need prior to the ceremony (gown, hood, and tassel). It will be mailed to the address you specify at the time of your order.

All students will receive their cap at lineup on the day of Commencement. Students graduating with Latin Honors will receive their honors cords at lineup on the day of Commencement.

For questions about academic garb, please email Katy Dillard at


    Attend rehearsal on December 5.

    It is very important for you to attend your Commencement rehearsal on Tuesday, December 5 from 4–7 p.m. in the O’Shaughnessy Auditorium.

    • 4–5 p.m. Refreshments, door prize sign-up and headshots
    • 5–6 p.m. Graduation rehearsal program
    • 6–6:30 p.m. Ticket pick-up, refreshments and headshots

    The St. Paul Bookstore will be open until 5 p.m.

    If you are unable to attend, please contact the Student Center and Activities Office, Coeur de Catherine 270, 651.690.6210, starting Wednesday, December 6 to have your questions regarding rehearsal and Commencement answered.

  • Commencement Ceremony Parking

    Parking Recommendations for Students and Guests

    We encourage students and guests to enter through Gate 4 on Fairview Avenue and park in the O’Shaughnessy parking lot located on the southeast corner of campus, near the Georgia and Alberta Apartments. During Commencement, all campus parking areas will be open for guests and permit requirements will not be enforced.

Please do not park in handicap spaces (unless permitted) or fire lanes.

Warning: the city will ticket cars parking on the north side of Randolph or on Cleveland and Fairview Avenues. These areas are designated for neighborhood resident parking by permit only.

Handicap parking spots are available in the O’Shaughnessy lot. There are additional spaces behind the O’Shaughnessy Auditorium if you enter campus through Gate 3 off of Randolph Avenue, west of Fairview Avenue.

Note: If your guest has a mobility challenge that prevents them from safely traveling from these parking spots to the chapel or auditorium, you guest may call 651.690.8888 to receive help from Public Safety. Public Safety will be touring all campus parking areas. If your guest does not have a cell phone, please instruct them to watch for a Public Safety vehicle, and step out of their car (or roll down a window) to signal for assistance.

There are several hotels nearby St. Catherine University's St. Paul campus for you to stay at when you visit us. Here is a variety of good options.

Cathedral Hill Bed and Breakfast ($$$)
488 Holly Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55102
Directions (4.4 mi)

Holiday Inn Downtown Saint Paul ($$)
175 W 7th Street, St. Paul, MN 55102
Directions (4.5 mi)

Saint Paul Hotel ($$$)
350 Market Street, St. Paul, MN 55102
Directions (5.1 mi)

Embassy Suites Hotel- Saint Paul ($$)
175 East 10th Street, St. Paul, MN 55101
Directions (5.3 mi)

Courtyard Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport ($$)
1352 Northland Dr, Mendota Heights, MN 55120
Directions (6.3 mi)

Hampton Inn and Suites St. Paul Downtown($$)
200 W. 7th Street, St. Paul, MN 55102
Directions (4.8 mi)

  • around town

    Places to Stay and Eat

    There are so many places to host your family and friends when they are in town for your commencement.


    Share Your Joy

    Explore more ways to celebrate and remember this achievement—and share it with your family and friends.

Jostens and Balfour offers a full line of customized products for graduation. Special order custom, high-quality, embossed invitations and announcements through the Jostens website.

Note: Some people do not know that announcements are not invitations. Omitting the place and time of the ceremony from your announcements should help alleviate this confusion.

The official St. Catherine University ring can also be purchased through Jostens or Balfour.

A photographer from Lifetouch will take photos of each graduate at Commencement and graduates will receive proofs and purchase information approximately six weeks after graduation. This will be mailed to your most recent address on record at the Registrar’s Office. Photos can also be viewed online.

The Office of Marketing and Communications also photographs Commencement events. These photos will be used for public relations purposes and are available for download by graduates and family members from the University's Flickr site.

Family members and friends in the auditorium may take photographs or videotape from their seats. Out of courtesy to graduates and other audience members, approaching the altar or stage for photographs or videotaping during the Mass and Hooding Ceremony or the Commencement ceremony is not allowed.

The Commencement ceremony in The O’Shaughnessy Auditorium will be recorded using a professional camcorder. You can purchase an unedited DVD showing each graduate walk across the stage, all Commencement speeches and presentation of special honors. It will only be available in USA standard (Region #1) format and costs $15.00 (includes S & H).

To purchase one or more copies, please fill use the Commencement DVD Order Form. If you have questions, call 651.690.6211 or email Breanna Berg.

  • your graduation status

    Diplomas, Honors & Student Account Status

    Unsure if you'll be graduating with honors, or when you'll get your diploma? Concerned about your student account's outstanding balance? Make sure you're squared away for graduation day.

Latin Honors are awarded to eligible students earning their first baccalaureate degree. To be considered for Latin Honors students must complete a minimum of 64 credits in residence at St. Catherine University. Latin Honors are awarded upon completion of all graduation requirements with the following institutional grade point average (resident courses only, no transfer courses included):

  • For graduation cum laude, a GPA of 3.667
  • For graduation magna cum laude, a GPA of 3.8
  • For graduation summa cum laude, a GPA of 3.9

The honors awarded are noted on your transcript and in the program at Commencement.

Predicted eligibility for Latin Honors is determined approximately six weeks prior to Commencement; actual eligibility is based on your final St. Catherine University GPA.

Latin Honor cords will be handed out at lineup. Cords for departmental honor societies are provided by the individual departments. Graduating students are encouraged to wear any/all of their honor society cords to Commencement.

Students with balances remaining on their accounts should contact Jordana Lewis ( or 651.690.6567) in the Student Accounts Office to make arrangements for payment to the University.

Students with balances on their account after Commencement will have their diplomas and official transcripts held until full payment is made.

If you are a Perkins or Nursing Loan borrower, you need to complete the online loan exit questionnaire prior to graduation. Questions about the questionnaire can be directed to Sharon Fetting in the Student Accounts Office ( or 651.690.6858). Technical questions or problems can be directed to University Accounting Service (UAS) at 1.800.999.6227.

If you borrowed other types of student loans you need to complete an exit counseling session. Expect notification of times from the Financial Aid Office.

If your student account is in good standing your diploma and final transcripts will be mailed to your permanent address approximately six weeks after Commencement.

Please ensure that the Registrar’s Office has your correct address on file.

Diploma frames are available for purchase through both bookstores—view examples online or in the St. Paul Bookstore.