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Commencement 2023 Schedule of Events

Thursday, May 4, 2023

8:30 AM Nurse Pinning Ceremony | Gymnasium

10:30 AM Graduate Candidate Chapel | Gymnasium

12:00 Noon Graduate Candidate Luncheon 

7:00 PM Baccalaureate | Gymnasium


Friday, May 5, 2023

10:00 AM Convocation | Gymnasium*

12:00 noon Lunch available in Dining Complex

Tickets are required for Convocation main floor seating. Open seating will be available in the bleachers.
Nursery is provided for Baccalaureate and Commencement. Children under 5 years old will not be permitted in either service.
MBU Commencement is a formal academic ceremony, conducted with dignity. Proper attire and respectful behavior are expected.

*Doors will open to the public one hour before Convocation.

Important Information for Graduates

Graduate Schedule of Events

Thursday, May 4

  • 10:30 a.m. – Graduate Chapel | Gymnasium
  • 12:00 noon – Graduate Candidate Luncheon | Dining Complex
  • 1:30 p.m. –  Graduation Rehearsal | Gymnasium
  • 6:00-6:30 p.m. – Dress check for Main Campus Students | DC 202
  • 6:30 p.m. – Roll call for all graduates – regalia required | Dining Complex
  • 7:00 p.m. – Baccalaureate | Gymnasium

Friday, May 5

  • 8:30 a.m. – Graduate Photos | Front steps of Old Main
  • 9:00-9:30 a.m. – Dress check for Main Campus Students | DC 202
  • 9:30 a.m. – Roll Call for all graduates – regalia required | Dining Complex
  • 10:00 a.m. – Convocation | Gymnasium

Main Campus graduates who are marching for Convocation are expected to attend all of these events.

Online graduates who are marching for Convocation (Friday) but are not be able to attend Rehearsal or Baccalaureate (Thursday) should contact the Academic Office,

  • Tickets are not required for seating at Baccalaureate on Thursday evening.
  • Tickets are required for main floor seating at Convocation on Friday morning.
  • Graduates must request reserved seating tickets for their guests by submitting the Convocation Ticket Request Form between January 15 and March 15. 
      • Each graduate is guaranteed up to three (3) tickets. Additional tickets may be requested but are not guaranteed.
      • Open seating is available on the bleachers (no tickets required).
      • One VIP parking permit is provided with each graduate’s tickets. The parking permit cannot be replaced.
      • Graduates will receive instructions regarding when and where to pick up their tickets and parking permits.
Academic Honors

Academic honors are given to graduating seniors based upon their cumulative grade point average. Students receiving such honors are identified by honor cords.

  • Associate degree with honors (3.50–4.00), white cord
  • Cum Laude (3.50–3.74), blue/blue cord
  • Magna Cum Laude (3.75–3.90), blue/gold cord
  • Summa Cum Laude (3.91–4.00), gold/gold cord

The academic honors recognized at graduation will be based on the student’s cumulative GPA for all completed courses as of April 1 in the academic year during which the student graduates, including highest and second-highest GPA, and commencement honors. The student’s final cumulative grade point average will determine the specific honor printed on the transcript and diploma.

  • Students will wear that specific honor regalia
  • Honor cords will be distributed at Graduation Rehearsal on Thursday and at the photo shoot prior to Convocation
  • Honor cords should be worn for Convocation on Friday (not Baccalaureate) 
  • Honor cords are the property of the graduate and do not need to be returned

Two undergraduates earning the highest grade point averages for the graduating class will be awarded medals signifying that honor. The medals will be awarded on Friday morning prior to Convocation.


Commencement Dress Requirements

Attire for Graduate Candidate Chapel, Lunch, and Rehearsal

  • Class Casual (see Student Life Handbook)
  • Women: modest dresses, skirts/tops
  • Men: casual slacks and khakis, collared shirts (polo shirts, dress shirts)

Attire for Baccalaureate and Convocation

  • Graduates must wear appropriate academic regalia (regalia is not provided)
  • To enhance the solemnity of Commencement events, only Maranatha-issued items may be worn over graduation regalia (honor cords, stoles/sashes, medals)
  • Honor cords and master’s/doctoral hoods are not worn for Baccalaureate
  • Mortarboard should be worn flat on top of the head, not off the back


  • Modest dress or skirt/top (must meet the MBU dress requirement for Church Dress and general clothing requirements as listed in the Student Life Handbook)
  • Dresses/skirts must come to the top of the knee, with a slit no higher than the top of the knee
  • Dresses/skirts cannot hang below the graduation gown
  • Neutral-colored (black, brown, grey, nude, etc.) dressy shoes (no backless slides, no white soles)
  • Purses, cameras, cell phones may not be carried
  • Main Campus students must have their dresses and shoes checked by their dorm supervisor or Student Life Office two weeks prior to graduation


  • Dress pants (black, dark blue, grey)
  • Dress socks (crew length, plain dark color)
  • Dress shoes (brown or black, no white soles)
  • Long-sleeved white dress shirt
  • Tie (regular length, no bolo ties or bow ties)
  • Military dress is acceptable for those in the military
  • Haircut and facial hair must meet MBU standards (see Student Life Handbook)

Main Campus graduates must pass dress check prior to Baccalaureate and Convocation.


All candidates are required to wear approved academic regalia to participate in the commencement exercises.

  • Regalia is worn for the Baccalaureate service without honor cords or hoods
  • Full regalia is worn for Convocation, including honor cords and hoods
    • Mortar boards should be worn flat on top of the head, not off the back. Decorating of caps is not permitted.
    • Students may borrow regalia from a recent graduate, as long as it matches the regalia shown on the order form.
    • Only Maranatha-issued items (honor cords, stoles/sashes, medals, etc.) may be worn over graduation regalia.
  • Graduate candidates should order regalia by February 28.
  • Contact with questions about regalia.
Degree Regalia to order
MBBI Bachelor degree regalia (gown, cap, tassel)
Associate Degree Bachelor degree regalia (gown, cap, tassel)
Bachelor Degree Bachelor degree regalia (gown, cap, tassel)
Dual Bachelor and Master Degree Master degree regalia (gown, cap, tassel, hood)
Master Degree Master degree regalia (gown, cap, tassel, hood)
Doctoral Degree Doctoral degree regalia (gown, cap, tassel, hood)



Diplomas and one official transcript will be mailed to degree candidates approximately six to eight weeks after all the requirements for the degree are completed and final grades are submitted. 

Degree candidates will receive an empty diploma cover when crossing the stage at Convocation. Diploma covers are available upon request from the Registrar’s Office for graduates who will not be in attendance at Commencement.

Graduate FAQ

How many tickets can I receive?

  • Tickets are not required for Baccalaureate.
  • Each graduate is guaranteed up to three (3) tickets for Convocation. Additional tickets may be requested but are not guaranteed.
  • Plenty of open seating (no ticket required) is available in the bleachers.

When will I receive my diploma?

  • Students participating in the Commencement ceremony will receive a diploma cover.
  • Diplomas will be ordered and mailed after all academic requirements have been satisfied and any outstanding account balance has been paid in full.

Important Information for Guests

Events and Tickets

Family and friends of graduates are invited to attend all Commencement events, including Nurse Pinning, Graduate Candidate Chapel and Luncheon, Baccalaureate, and Convocation. Graduation Rehearsal is not open to the public.


  • No tickets are required for seating at Baccalaureate.
  • Tickets are required for Main Floor reserved seating at Convocation. Graduates may order tickets for their guests. Tickets are limited.
  • Open seating (no ticket required) is available on the bleachers.
  • A limited number of seats will be available for guests not related to a graduate (faculty/staff, pastors, friends, students). Please request tickets by May 3.
    • Guests who have a parking pass may enter the west (main) campus entrance near the gymnasium and will be directed into the parking lot
    • Other parking can be found along Main Street and in the lower lots on the east side of campus (enter through the east entrance)
    • Handicap parking is available next to the gym, by entering the west (main) campus entrance

    Children under five (5) years old will not be permitted in Baccalaureate or Convocation.

    A Nursery is provided for both services.

    • Nursery personnel includes Maranatha staff and students
    • Registration at the door is required – staff will collect parent’s information (name, cell phone number, etc.) and instructions for each child
    • Only the individual(s) identified at check-in may take the child from the nursery
    • Nursery staff will send a text message to the cell phone listed at Registration if the child needs a family member’s attention during the event
    • Cribs, swings, etc. are provided for infants
    • Toys are provided for all ages
    Dining Complex Meals

    Meals may be purchased in the Dining Complex using cash, check, or credit card.

    Breakfast Lunch Dinner
    Adult $5.00 $7.25 $8.25
    Child (age 9 and under) $2.75 $3.75 $4.50

    All attendees at Graduate Chapel on Thursday will receive a free lunch ticket to be used that day.


    While most of MBU’s housing will be full the week of Commencement, there are various hotels and bed and breakfasts in the Watertown area.

    Local Lodging