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On the day
Your graduation day
Congratulations to graduands at the Winter ceremonies!
Graduation is an important occasion as it is the culmination of all the hard work during your time at Ulster University. It marks an important milestone from where you embark on a successful career or further your studies in your chosen specialism.
We hope you enjoy the day and that it will be just one of the many happy memories of your time here.
The information on these pages provide an overview of the day itself.
Academical dress consists of a gown, a hood and a cap (mortarboard or bonnet).
The different styles of gown indicate the levels of award of undergraduate, postgraduate and research. Similarly the different colours and bindings on hoods indicate the different types of award such as Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Laws, Bachelor of Engineering etc and the corresponding categories at Masters level.
Students attending graduation are known as graduands and are required to wear full academical dress comprising gown, hood and cap (mortarboards for those graduating with a taught course award or bonnets for those graduating with a research course award).
The University has its own stock of academical dress and the cost of hire is included in the graduation fee. Graduands collect their academical dress at the venue prior to the graduation ceremony.
Details of the type of gown and hood appropriate to each award is contained in the Scheme of Academical Dress.
What to Wear at Graduation
Gowns come in four sizes and you will be given a gown based on your height. It is best not to wear silky material immediately under the gown as it will tend to slip off the shoulders.
Hoods normally require to be pinned or buttoned to a shirt/blouse or jacket. The Registry Office provides pins at graduation to enable graduands to pin the hood in place if necessary.
While the University does not prescribe what style of clothes should be worn under the gown, graduation is a formal ceremonial occasion marking an important achievement and stage in a student's life. Graduands should, therefore, dress appropriately.
Jeans, tee-shirts, trainers and other casual items of clothing are not considered appropriate to be worn at graduation ceremonies.
We recommend securely fitting shoes with a suitable heel height should be worn as Graduands are required to walk up and down ramps and/or steps to the platform to receive their award.
In the case of adverse weather conditions the graduation ceremonies will take place as planned and graduating students are asked to make every effort to attend the ceremony for which they have received tickets.
We regret that it will not be possible for graduands to switch to a different ceremony at the same, or another, campus or to defer to the summer of 2015.
On successful completion of your course you are provided with a certificate (often referred to as a parchment) to verify your award. The certificate contains your name, the type of award (certificate, diploma, degree), the subject of study and the classification of the award (if appropriate).
Your name will be included on your award certificate in the format, first name, middle names, surname. The name used will be the full legal name which you confirmed as correct when you registered for your course or subsequently completed the Online Graduation process.
Title such as Mr, Mrs, Dr etc are not included and initials are not permitted. If any have been included, then we will remove them before the parchment is printed.
The name that appears on your certificate should be the same as that on your birth, adoption or marriage certificate as appropriate. Using a different version of your name may cause difficulties later on in proving that the certificate is yours.
Once your certificate has been issued it is not possible to amend your name. Your certificate is a legal document to which the University's seal has been affixed.
You can check your name at any time by accessing your University record via the Student Portal.
Collecting your certificate
If you attend graduation your certificate will be presented to you as your leave the platform after your award has been conferred.
If you choose not to attend graduation in person your award is conferred in absentia.
If you want your certificate to be sent to you by post then you must request this. A fee of £6 is normally charged for this service.
Alternatively you may collect your certificate in person from your campus Examinations Office.
Graduation day details
Times and arrival
Two graduation ceremonies are normally held on each day of graduation. The morning ceremonies start at 11.00 am and the afternoon ceremonies at 3.30 pm.
Graduands are required to attend a short rehearsal starting 45 minutes before the ceremony at which they are to be presented for their award.
Graduands should arrive at least one hour before the ceremony to allow sufficient time to collect and don academical dress.
If graduands wish to have photographs taken before the ceremony they should arrive even earlier. Guests are admitted to the hall 20 minutes prior to the start of the ceremony.
The graduation ceremony commences with a fanfare and processional march which heralds the arrival of the academic procession.The procession is lead by the Stave Bearer and includes Senior Officers of the University, members of Council and Senate and academic staff. The Chancellor or, in his absence, the Vice-Chancellor presides at each graduation ceremony.
There is an opening address by the Chancellor or the Vice-Chancellor who then, in accordance with the University's statutes, confers degrees and other academic distinctions on all students who have been deemed eligible by Senate.
Each year the University recognises the outstanding contribution that a number of individuals have made to academic life or to society at large by conferring on them an honorary degree. There is normally one honorary degree or Distinguished Award presented at each ceremony.
Following the presentation of the Honorary Graduate or Distinguished Award recipient, students are presented to the Chancellor/Vice-Chancellor for their award by the Dean of their Faculty. Their names are called out, one at a time, by course.
Graduands walk across the platform, stop and bow to the Chancellor/Vice-Chancellor and collect their certificate before returning to their seat in the auditorium.
After all graduates have been presented, the Honorary Graduate or Distinguished Award recipient addresses the congregation. A new student graduate will also speak on behalf of those graduating at the ceremony.
The formal proceedings conclude with closing remarks from the Provost of the campus where the ceremony is held. The academic procession, led by the Chancellor/Vice-Chancellor, leaves the hall. The new graduates join the procession after the academic staff to symbolise their new status.
After the ceremony
Graduates meet up with their family and friends and tutors after the ceremony for light refreshments and to talk and to take photographs.
Finally, graduates return their academical dress before they leave, most to have lunch or dinner to celebrate their achievement.
Success are the official photographers for the Ulster University Graduation.
They will be welcoming Graduates, family and friends into the photography studios, located in either Jordanstown or at The Millennium Forum, Derry/Londonderry, from 8.00 am until an hour after the last ceremony.
Success recommends that you use their online pre-booking service which includes the option to book a time slot.
Alternatively, you can choose and make payment on the day. A photograph is automatically taken (wherever possible) of each Graduate being presented with their award on stage during the ceremony.
Printed, mounted copies can be purchased either beforehand, on the day or after the event via the Success website.
Graduates can download the Success app (freely available to all Success customers) and view images on their device soon after leaving the studios (subject to data coverage/charges etc.).
Schedule of ceremonies
Winter Graduation 2014 ceremonies arranegments are as follows:
Jordanstown and Belfast campus graduands
Venue: Assembly Hall at Jordanstown campus
Directions: Jordanstown campus
Parking: Car parking will be free of charge for all ceremonies on the Jordanstown campus.
- 11:00 AM
Access Digital and Distributed Learning
Art, Design and the Built Environment
Computing & Engineering
Life & Health Sciences
- 11:00 AM
- Ulster Business School
Coleraine and Magee campus graduands
Venue: The Millennium Forum, Derry/Londonderry
Directions: The Millennium Forum
Parking: Parking can be difficult and traffic congested around the Millennium Forum.
Please ensure that you leave enough time to park and get to the venue at least an hour prior to the start of the ceremony.
- 11:00 AM
Life and Health Sciences (School of Biomedical Sciences only)
Ulster Business School
Computing and Engineering
Life and Health Sciences (excluding School of Biomedical Sciences)
Souvenirs and memorabilia
We have a range of items from pens, scarfs, crystal, iPad cases etc. on sale during the graduations.
You can also use our online store to buy university branded items etc.
Class of 2014 T-shirts and Hoodies
Celebrate your achievement with a graduation hoodie or t-shirt featuring the names of you and your classmates!
You can include extra personalisation on the hood, sleeves and chest etc. - view the full range at the Campus Clothing website.
Certificate and photograph frames are available on the day or by post. Metal frames are available as Gold, Pewter, Silver and Black and the Wood frames are Walnut and Walnut and Brass polished finish.
The frames include the university name and crest gold foiled onto the mount. Prices are from £29.95 up to £70.00.
Certificates can be framed while you wait immediately after each ceremony. Further information is available from the Certificate Framing website.
Development & Alumni Relations Office
Develop a life-long relationship with the University and keep in touch with fellow graduates via The Alumni Relations office.
You are automatically enrolled as a member of the alumni association when you graduate - find out more about associated benefits etc. on the Alumni website.