2020 Commencement Weekend Schedule

Questions? Call the Office of Conferences and Special Events, at (413) 542-2845.


Friday, May 22, 2020

1 to 9 p.m.
Welcome Center and Housing Check-in for seniors and families. Alumni House (see parking map).
5 p.m. 
Commencement Rehearsal. Mandatory for seniors; families need not attend. Main Quadrangle (Johnson Chapel in case of rain).

Saturday, May 23, 2020

8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Welcome Center and Housing Check-in for seniors and families. Alumni House (see parking map).
9 a.m.
Phi Beta Kappa Meeting. Induction ceremony for new members of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest honor society of arts and sciences. Students elected to membership in this honor society are those of the highest standing. Remarks delivered by speaker to be announced in the spring. Stirn Auditorium.
10 a.m.
Baccalaureate Celebration. Seniors play a significant role in this interfaith gathering that includes music, readings, dance and an address by a speaker to be announced. Johnson Chapel.
11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
Conversations with Honored Guests
To be announced in April, 2020

12:30 to 2 p.m.
Luncheon for seniors, families, faculty and staff. In the event of inclement weather, lunch will be served under the large tent on Valentine Quad. Additional seating will be available in Valentine Dining Hall. 
Valentine Quadrangle
1 p.m.
Sigma Xi Meeting. Induction ceremony for new members of The Scientific Research Society.  Lewis-Sebring Dining Commons, Valentine Hall.
2 to 3 p.m.
Conversations with Honored Guests
To be announced in April, 2020

3:15 to 4:15 p.m.
Conversations with Honored Guests
To be announced in April, 2020

4:30 to 6 p.m.
President Biddy Martin President’s Reception. President Biddy Martin hosts a gathering for seniors, families and members of the faculty and staff.
Garden of the President’s House

9:15 p.m.
Choral Society Concert. The Choral Society includes the Chorus, the Glee Club and the Concert Choir, directed by Arianne Abela. The performance will feature music from all over the world as well as traditional Amherst songs. Tickets are $10 for the general public, $5 for senior citizens and children 12 and under, and free for Amherst and Five College students with ID. Tickets are available in the Alumni House during Welcome Center hours and in the lobby of  the Arms Music Center starting at 8:15 p.m. on the evening of the performance.  
Buckley Recital Hall, Arms Music Center.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Welcome Center Open. Alumni House (see parking map).
10 a.m.
The 198th Commencement. Addresses by President Biddy Martin and student to be announced. Marshal: Peter R. Pouncey Professor of Mathematics Gregory Call. Honorary Marshal: to be announced. Medal for Eminent Service: to be announced. Student Marshals: to be announced.

Phebe and Zephaniah Swift Moore Teaching Awards: to be announced

The Conway Canes for each graduating senior are a gift from the Fund for Conway Canes, endowed by Brian J. Conway ’80 and Kevin J. Conway ’80. The canes are being distributed by: to be announced.
Main Quadrangle. 
12:30 to 2 p.m.
Luncheon for seniors, families, faculty and staff. In the event of inclement weather, lunch will be served under the large tent on Valentine Quad. Additional seating will be available in Valentine Dining Hall. Valentine Quadrangle.

Note: When Commencement is outdoors, seating is unlimited, and no tickets are required. If severe weather forces Commencement indoors, the event will be held in LeFrak Gymnasium, where seating is limited to ticket holders. Each graduating senior may pick up three tickets for family or other guests on Friday or Saturday at Commencement Headquarters in Alumni House. Guests without tickets may watch a video simulcast of the event in Coolidge Cage, next to LeFrak. To learn the location of Sunday’s Commencement ceremony, call (413) 542-INFO (4636) or go to amherst.edu/commencement after 8 a.m. on Sunday.

Some audience members may have particular health or safety concerns that necessitate their sitting indoors rather than outdoors to watch the Commencement ceremony. For such cases, there is limited seating available in Stirn Auditorium, where live video of the ceremony will be projected onto a large screen. (Seating will be available in Stirn only if the ceremony is taking place outdoors. If the ceremony has been moved to LeFrak Gymnasium because of inclement weather, all audience members will watch from within the gymnasium or Coolidge Cage.)