Graduation 2021

George Mason University will conduct its 54th Spring Commencement virtually. The ceremony is set for 2 p.m. Friday, May 14, 2021. The university-wide commencement ceremony will be live-streamed. We will also hold in-person graduation recognition events during the week of May 10.


Keeping Safe While Celebrating

All events will take place rain or shine. Details about alternate plans for severe weather will be sent to registered participants.   

All events will follow current Virginia public health guidelines and will include social distancing.

You must wear a face covering at all times while on campus, except when photographs are being taken at the Patriot Procession or Mini Ceremonies.

All graduates and guests must complete the Mason COVID Health Check on the day of the event and must be prepared to show their green health check confirmation email to be admitted to their respective events.

Professional photographers will be present at all events.

You can wear rain gear, if needed, and bring bottled water to the events.

In-Person Events

Although registration for the Mini Ceremony has now closed, you can still register for the Patriot Procession. Family and friends are also invited to attend. Everyone must adhere to COVID-related health restrictions. 

You must register to participate.

The Patriot Procession

This event, open to undergraduate, master's, and doctoral candidates, will take place at the soccer stadium on the Fairfax Campus and (Friday, May 14 only) at Mason Pond on the Fairfax Campus. You can select a preferred time to have your moment on stage, and your name will be announced. You can bring up to eight guests.  

You will have several photo opportunities, including a photograph with your family and friends.  Wearing your graduation regalia is encouraged but not required.  Registration will remain open as long as time slots are available. 

The Patriot Procession will be ongoing during the week of May 10. You should receive information on the schedule when you register. 

The Mini Ceremony

For those who have registered, each of Mason’s academic colleges will present an event for undergraduate and master's candidates, which will take place outside EagleBank Arena.

In addition, 2020 graduates who registered will have their own celebratory Mini Ceremony on Friday, May 14 (time to be determined).

You can bring up to three guests, who will be seated with you. 

You must wear graduation regalia to participate in a Mini CeremonyIf you haven't purchased yours yet, you must go to a Mason Bookstore, as online ordering is no longer available. The Johnson Center Bookstore will open at 9 a.m. each day from May 10 through 14 if you need to buy regalia.  

If you ordered your regalia, orders are in process and will be shipped from Salem, Virginia. They should have arrived in the Northern Virginia area within a day of purchase. Customers should have gotten emails with tracking information when the order shipped. Most customers should get their regalia by the weekend of May 8.

These one-hour ceremonies will include brief congratulatory remarks followed by the reading of graduates’ names as you cross the stage, where you will be photographed.

There will be no formal procession or recession during Mini Ceremonies. Graduates who have registered will receive an email with instructions on how to claim their tickets.

All the Lot L Mini Ceremonies will be streamed on Mason's main YouTube channel.

Contact University Events if you have any questions.

The Mini Ceremony Schedule

Monday, May 10

College of Science, 10 a.m.

Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution, 1 p.m.

College of Education and Human Development, 4 p.m.

Tuesday, May 11

College of Humanities and Social Sciences, two ceremonies.

The 10 a.m. ceremony will include:

  • Art History (BA, MA) 
  • Communication (BA, MA) 
  • Creative Writing (BFA, MFA) 
  • English (BA, MA) 
  • Environmental and Sustainability Studies (BA) 
  • Foreign Languages (BA, MA) 
  • Global Affairs (BA, MA) 
  • Higher Education and Student Development (MA) 
  • History (BA, MA) 
  • Individualized Study (BIS) 
  • Integrative Studies (BA, BS) 
  • Interdisciplinary Studies (MAIS) 
  • Latin American Studies (BA) 
  • Middle East and Islamic Studies (MA) 
  • Philosophy (BA, MA) 
  • Religious Studies (BA)
  • Russian and Eurasian Studies (BA) 

The 1 p.m. ceremony will include:

  • Anthropology (BA, MA) 
  • Applied Organizational and Industrial Psychology (MPS) 
  • Criminal Justice (MS) 
  • Criminology, Law and Society (BA, BS, MA) 
  • Economics (BA, BS, MA) 
  • Psychology (BA, BS, MA)
  • Sociology (BA, MA) 

Schar School of Policy and Government, 4 p.m. 

Wednesday, May 12

College of Visual and Performing Arts, 10 a.m.

Volgenau School of Engineering, two ceremonies

The 1 p.m. ceremony will include:

  • Bioengineering 
  • Civil Environmental & Infrastructure Engineering 
  • Cyber Security Engineering 
  • Data Analytics Engineering 
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering 
  • Mechanical Engineering 
  • Systems Engineering & Operations Research 

The 4 p.m. ceremony will include:

  • Computer Science 
  • Information Sciences and Technology 
  • Statistics 

Thursday, May 13

College of Health and Human Services, 10 a.m.

School of Business, two ceremonies.

  • The 1 p.m. ceremony will include undergraduate / bachelors
  • The 4 p.m. ceremony will include graduate / masters.

Friday, May 14

University Doctoral (All Academic Units) – Spring 2021 candidates and all 2020 doctoral graduates, 10 a.m.

2020 Undergraduate and Graduate Ceremony (all academic units), two ceremonies.

The 1 p.m. ceremony will include:

  • College of Science
  • Schar School of Policy and Government
  • School of Business,
  • Volgenau School of Engineering
  • Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution

The 4 p.m. ceremony will include:

  • College of Education and Human Development
  • College of Health and Human Services
  • College of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • College of Visual and Performing Arts

Virtual Spring 2021 Commencement Ceremony, 2 p.m.

Saturday, May 15

Antonin Scalia Law School, 1 p.m.

Doctoral Candidates

Spring 2021 Doctoral candidates and all 2020 Doctoral graduates are invited to participate in a live event at which their names and degrees will be announced on the morning of Friday, May 14.

Based on current public health guidelines, hooding of doctoral candidates will not be part of the ceremony.

Registration for the Doctoral Ceremony has closed, but you can still participate in the Patriot Procession.

  • You can invite up to eight guests to the Patriot Procession. Registration will be open until all slots are filled
  • If you registered for the Doctoral Ceremony, you can bring up to three guests. Details will be finalized soon, and you will receive an email to claim your tickets. 

Contact University Events if you have any questions.

Volunteer to Help with Graduation Events

We're looking for volunteers to help out with commencement events May 10 to 15.

We need faculty members to act as as marshals for the Mini Ceremonies and Patriot Procession There will be no processional or recessional for the Mini Ceremonies.

Faculty will need to wear regalia. If you need rented regalia, the graduation budget will cover the costs. 

We also need staff and alumni to help with events. 

Positions and duties include:

Faculty Marshal

  • Act as readers at Mini Ceremony and Patriot Procession.
  • Guide groups to seating in the Mini Ceremony. 
  • Help with Mini Ceremony dismissal by rows/sections. 
  • Guide groups at the Patriot Procession: Direct families/friends to observation area, direct graduates to the stage

Sign up to volunteer for the Mini Ceremony

Sign up to volunteer for the Patriot Procession

Staff / Alumni 

  • Man information, registration, and gift tables.
  • Help guide graduates and guests to registration tables and entrances.
  • Handle VIPS at Mini Ceremonies.
  • Deal with issues that arise. 

Sign up to volunteer for the Mini Ceremony

Sign up to volunteer for the Patriot Procession

Smaller Mason Cap 2021 image

Share Your Creativity and Celebrate Your Achievement with a Decorated Cap

Many Mason graduates highlight their individuality and diversity through a creatively decorated cap via Facebook or Instagram.

Because our ceremony will be virtual this year, we’re offering you the chance to create a virtual decorated cap.

Share yours via the hashtag #MyMasonCap.