March Letter

March 10, 2011

Dear Master’s Degree or Teacher Credential Student,


Graduate students receiving master’s degrees and students earning a teaching credential.


Graduate and Credential Commencement Ceremony


Friday, May 13, 2011, at 6:00 p.m.


Conlan Center on the Dominican University of California campus. 


Students will assemble around Angelico Hall for the procession to Conlan; the procession starts at 5:40 p.m., and students should be there around 5:00 p.m. Students earning the master’s degree should gather in the plaza in front of Angelico. Credential students should gather across Acacia Avenue from Angelico Hall. The ceremony should last about 90 minutes and will be followed by a reception featuring cookies and punch.

There is no rehearsal for the graduate/credential Commencement.

All information about Commencement will be sent to your Dominican student email account. If you have arranged for your Dominican email account to forward messages to a private account, those messages will be sent to you. If you have never accessed your Dominican email account, please visit the information technology so that you can set up your student account.

Please refer your family and friends to the Commencement site where they may obtain current information about the graduate Commencement. Be sure to remind them that yours is the graduate and credential student ceremony, not the undergraduate ceremony.


from Angelico Hall to the Conlan Recreation Center. The procession will begin around 5:40 p.m. If a student is unable to walk, he or she may meet the procession outside Conlan. Master Degree students will process by departments within the school in which they are enrolled. Your school is one of these three: Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, Business and Leadership, and Education and Counseling Psychology. All students in the teacher credential program are in the School of Education and Counseling Psychology. The credential students process as a group from a place across Acacia Avenue from Angelico Hall. Students do not sit in alphabetical order, but they do process and sit with students in the same academic program. Every student MUST pick up a name card at a table outside Caleruega Hall before moving to the procession line. Name cards will be available at 4:45PM. As the student is about to walk across the Conlan stage to be to receive a diploma cover, the student will hand this card to the dean of the school from which the student is graduating. The dean reads the name as it is printed on the card. If you have a name that you think the dean could have difficulty pronouncing, please spell it phonetically on the card as soon as you receive it.

Some departmental Honors may be mentioned at Commencement; however, for the most part, honors are not mentioned at a graduate/credential commencement ceremony because it is expected that at that level all students are worthy of honors.


Students receiving a master’s degree are “hooded” just before walking across the Conlan stage to receive a diploma cover. A “hood” comes with the academic regalia that students must purchase in the bookstore. The academic regalia package, which should cost around eighty dollars, will include a black robe, a headpiece (mortarboard), and the hood, a black garment with a colorful trim. When approaching the Vice President or the Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs on the stage, the student hands the hood to that person who will then place it over the student’s head. The hood is carried, not worn, into Conlan. It is worn only after the hooding takes place. After receiving the hood, the student walks a few more steps and receives the diploma cover from the President of Dominican University. If you are graduating from the School of Arts and Sciences, the trim color on your hood should be white. There are a couple of exceptions: Nursing is apricot and Science and Occupational Therapy trim is gold. Counseling Psychology should be white. If you are graduating with a master’s degree from the School of Education, the trim on your hood is light blue. If you are graduating from the School of Business and Leadership, including MBAs, the trim color on your hood is drab. An exception is the peacock blue trim color for students in Public Administration (the CMI group).  


wear academic regalia to the ceremony, but are not hooded. They should mention to the bookstore staff that they do not wish to purchase a hood. Credential students will pay about sixty dollars for academic regalia.

Academic Ragalia

It may be purchased in the Dominican bookstore on during regular bookstore hours. Visit the Herff Jones Company to purchase graduation announcements, class rings and diploma frames.

Financial Matters

Financial Matters including the payment of the Commencement fee of $75, must be resolved with the Business Office, Room 103 Bertrand Hall, by Friday, May 6, 2011. Students with outstanding balances may not participate in the Commencement ceremony. Please check your billing statement to see if your fee has already been charged and paid.


Parking around campus will be difficult on the evening of Commencement. All parking spaces fill up quickly. Graduating students should advise their guests about the Conlan Center lot across Grand Avenue from the main academic campus core. Parking on Acacia and other campus streets will be reserved for trustees and guests being honored during the graduation ceremony. Parking will be available behind Caleruega and behind the residence halls. Do not park on Palm or Olive Avenues. Cars Parked on those streets will be towed. The current charge for having a towed car released is $360. There are some handicapped parking spaces in the Conlan lot and on campus that are reserved for persons with handicaps who have the blue Department of Motor Vehicles placard. Cars parked in those spaces MUST have the official placard or they will be towed. There will be parking attendants to direct traffic before Commencement. Please print a campus map for reference.


There are several events scheduled for the area the weekend of graduation, so booking now for hotel rooms is wise. Some of the hotels that may be giving special rates to Commencement guests are the Best Western Corte Madera Inn, the Aqua Hotel, Embassy Suites, and Four Points by Sheraton. Have your guests identify themselves as Dominican Commencement guests and tell them to ask for special rates when making a reservation.


Diplomas for masters degree students will be mailed in late September. Please notify the Office of the Registrar of the address where your diploma should be mailed.

Commencement Mass

There will be a Commencement Mass for students will be on Friday, May 13, at 3:00 p.m. in Saint Raphael’s Church in downtown San Rafael. You and your guests, Catholic and non-Catholic, are invited to attend this Mass. The Mass should end around 4:15 p.m..

Will you or any guests require a signer?

The agency which provides Dominican with signers has asked if anyone requires their services. Because of high demand around Commencement time, they don’t want to send a signer if one isn’t needed. Please call 415-485-3282 by May 2 if a signer is needed.

Congratulations on being so close to receiving your master’s degree or teaching credential. You have worked hard and Commencement should be a special time for you. Don’t get so caught up with the planning for graduation and its related events that you forget to enjoy it. Breathe deeply!


John Kennedy

Vice President for Student Life