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Annual Commencement Ceremony

The University of Montana Western
127th Annual Commencement Ceremony

10:00 a.m. | Saturday, May 4, 2024
Straugh Gymnasium

Commencement Ceremony

The University of Montana Western’s 127th Annual Commencement Ceremony is scheduled for 10:00am on Saturday, May 4, 2024 in Straugh Gymnasium.

This ceremony is to recognize all students who have completed a certificate, Associate’s degree, or Bachelor’s degree during the Summer or Fall 2023 terms, or have applied for an are on track to complete a certificate or degree in Spring 2024. Students must formally submit an Application for Graduation within the posted deadlines and receive a degree audit confirming they have completed or will complete their certificate or degree in the 2023-24 academic year. Students completing their degree in Summer 2024 must apply and receive approval by the Registrar’s Office for Early Graduation if they wish to walk in Commencement in Spring 2024. Any questions regarding eligibility to participate in Commencement should be directed to the UMW Registrar’s Office.

Commencement Ceremony Line-up

Students line up at the Lucy Carson Library by 9:00am on Saturday, May 4th

All students participating in Commencement need to arrive no later than 9:00am, fully dressed and ready to walk at the Lucy Carson Library on Saturday, May 4th. Please use the entrance closest to the Swysgood Technology Center (STC Building) to check in with ushers, and line up by degree/major. Ushers will be available to assist with line up. Students should leave all personal items with family members or friends and only have with them what they will carry into the Commencement Ceremony. Students cannot walk with any special guests during the procession to the BARC. No pets, confetti, noise makers, or alcohol are allowed in the library or any part of the Commencement Ceremony.

Faculty line-up at the STC First Floor Lobby

All faculty participating in Commencement need to arrive no later than 9:00am, fully dressed in regalia and ready to walk in the STC First Floor Lobby. Ushers will be available to assist with line up. The STC Building will be unlocked until 6:00pm to allow for ample time to pick up any personal items left there prior to the ceremony.

Any individual that cannot comfortably walk from the Lucy Carson Library or the Swysgood Technology Center to the Straugh Gymnasium is asked to please email [email protected] prior to April 26, 2024 to make other arrangements.


All students who RSVP and are approved by the Registrar’s Office will receive six (6) tickets for seating in the Straugh Gymnasium. Tickets can be picked up at the UMW Bookstore by the student only with photo ID 9:00am-5:00pm on Friday, May 3 or 7:30-9:00am Saturday, May 4. Students not needing all their tickets are welcome to give them to other students who are wanting extra tickets or leave them with the UMW Bookstore staff for others to take on a first come, first served basis.

For students who are bringing more than the six (6) ticketed guests, an additional viewing area with open seating is available for a live stream viewing of the ceremony in the Keltz Arena (in the same building as the Straugh Gymnasium). Seating in the Keltz Gymnasium does not require tickets. Tickets are free of charge, hold no monetary value, and can only be picked up by the student in person with a photo ID from the UMW Bookstore the last week of school. Babies and children ages one and under do not require tickets as long as they are being held or seated on a lap of a ticket holder.

Seating in both Straugh Gymnasium and Keltz Arena is first come, first served. Guests can begin seating at 9:00am.

RSVP to Commencement

Graduates and degree candidates need to let us know if they plan to “walk” in Commencement by submitting an online RSVP. Graduates and degree candidates can RSVP to the 127th Annual Commencement Ceremony by clicking the link below beginning January 1, 2024. Late RSVPs will be accepted up to April 26th, and are subject to approval by the UMW Registrar’s Office.


Required Regalia (cap & gown)

Degree candidates and graduates planning to participate in Commencement will need to wear a solid black cap and gown. Graduates and degree candidates can purchase regalia through our preferred provider, Oak Hall, for $25.00 beginning January, 1, 2024. All orders placed through Oak Hall will be shipped directly to UMW for pick-up the week of Commencement and must be placed no later than Wednesday, March 17, 2024. Students also have the option to order the regalia from other vendors, however the color and style may not match those ordered through Oak Hall.

As the deadline has passed to order regalia from Oak Hall, students have the option to purchase regalia from the UMW Bookstore’s limited stock for $25.00 or order through the online vendor of their choice. Visit or call the UMW Bookstore at 406-683-7282 to place an order. If ordering from an online vendor, please be mindful of shipping dates to insure your cap and gown arrives before Commencement!

Honors Cords

Associate or Bachelor degree candidates and graduates with qualifying institutional cumulative GPAs have the option to purchase honor cords from the UMW Bookstore for $10.00 April 29 – May 3, 2024. Please check the Catalog for Institutional GPA Honors requirements.

Rehearsal & Legacy Plaza Celebration

Rehearsal for all graduates and degree candidates is scheduled for Friday, May 3, 2024 at 2:00pm in the Lucy Carson Library and end in the Straugh Gymnasium. Attendance is not required but is strongly encouraged! This is a great opportunity to review where to go and what to expect on Saturday morning. UMW’s Director of Campus Events and Commencement Staff will be available to answer any last minute questions. Family and friends are welcome to join students for Rehearsal.

Legacy Plaza Celebration begins at 3:30pm in the Legacy Plaza and welcomes the Class of 2024 to the UMW Alumni Family. All students in attendance will receive a special UMW Alumni tassel to wear during commencement. Family and friends are invited to attend this fun celebration. Follow these links to order your Alumni License Plate and Legacy Brick now!


Graduates, degree candidates, family, friends, faculty, and staff are invited to a reception of light refreshments in the Legacy Plaza directly following Commencement. Commencement ushers will lead the recessional directly to the Legacy Plaza at the end of the ceremony.

Important Information

  • Graduates, candidates and guests must follow all staff instructions during the event
  • Guests must remain in the audience for the duration of the ceremony
  • UMW is a tobacco free campus
  • Pets are not allowed but registered service animals are welcomed
  • Confetti canons, glitter, airhorns, and similar devices are prohibited

Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities

If you or a family member requires any special assistance at the ceremony due to a disability or mobility challenge, please email [email protected] by April 26, 2024.

Event Parking & Campus Map

Parking will be available throughout campus as well as on the public streets surrounding campus. Please view this campus map to become familiar with campus before arriving.


The livestream for the University of Montana Western’s 127th Annual Commencement Ceremony will be available for viewing the day of the ceremony starting at 10:00am.

(link will be live at 10:00am on Saturday, May 4, 2024)

Digital Program

The digital program for the University of Montana Western’s 127th Annual Commencement Ceremony will be available for viewing the day of the ceremony.

(link will be live at 10:00am on Saturday, May 4, 2024)


Professional photography is provided by GradImages. Students participating in Commencement will receive proof of their photos to the email address they list on their name/degree card prior to the ceremony. Purchase of professional photos are optional.

Guests are asked to remain seated during the entire ceremony, and are not permitted to approach the stage or walkway for photos.


Students who complete their degree at the end of the Spring term will have their diploma(s) mailed to the diploma mailing address listed on their Application for Graduation. Generally, diplomas are mailed approximately twelve (12) weeks after Commencement. Students can email updated diploma mailing addresses to [email protected]


If you have a hold on your account, you will be allowed to participate in the commencement ceremony.  However, you will not receive your diploma or transcript until all holds have been lifted.  Please check your DAWGS account to see if you have any holds.

Please contact [email protected] with questions.

Updated April 16, 2024