Before Commencement

  • ASAP! Check list of Twin Cities hotels with special rates to reserve lodging for your family and friends attending graduation. (optional)
  • March 26, 2018: Last day to order cap and gown and personalized Graduation Packages ONLINE at Herff Jones, Inc. Orders placed after this date may incur additional fees. Personalized packages are optional.
  • April 10, 2018 from 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM: Attend the Senior Fair! Located in the Campus Center, Atrium. Learn more about what you need to do to prepare for Commencement. Offices in attendance include the Highlander, Registrar, Career Development Center, Senior Week, ITS, Financial Aid, and more!  Order your cap and gown in person!
  • Month of April: Watch for invites to individual Academic Department Reception, RSVP may be required.
  • April 16, 2018: Check your student account status on 1600 Grand to make sure you are eligible to receive a diploma at Commencement. Contact Student Accounts with questions at
  • April 30, 2018: Purchase generic graduation announcements from Highlander – The Shop at Macalester. (optional)
  • May 1, 2018: Check for diploma holds from Student Accounts to make sure you are eligible to receive your diploma at Commencement. Contact John at in Student Accounts with questions pertaining to incomplete loan responsibilities.
  • May 6, 2018: All caps, tassels, and rental gowns ordered will be available for pick up all week at the Highlander – The Shop at Macalester.
  • May 7, 2018: Start of Senior Week! 
  • May 7, 2018: Purchase tickets to All Campus Brunch on May 12 – Brunch is free for Graduates, $15 for adults and $10 for children ages 10 and under. Reserve tickets to All College Picnic on May 11 – Picnic is free for all. Picnic tickets can be reserved and Brunch tickets can be purchased at our Online Store
  • May 8, 2018: Complete Graduating Seniors Survey with Institutional Research.
  • May 9, 2018: Return all library materials or risk having a hold placed on your diploma.
  • May 10, 2018 at 10:00 AM: Commencement rehearsal / Class Photo (photo of the entire graduating class) in the Leonard Center, Fieldhouse / Alumni Gym.
  • May 11, 2018 from 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM: Attend Academic Department Reception, various locations

Commencement Day

  • May 12, 2018 from 9:15 AM – 10:15 AM : Baccalaureate Service in the Weyerhaeuser Memorial Chapel (optional)
  • May 12, 2018 from 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM: Commencement check-in at McPherson Atrium, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center.
  • May 12, 2018 from 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM: All Campus Brunch at Café Mac, Ruth Stricker Dayton Campus Center. (optional)
  • May 12, 2018 at 12:45 PM: Line up for procession in the Alumni Gym, Leonard Center.
  • May 12, 2018 at 1:30 PM: Commencement begins in the Leonard Center Fieldhouse.
  • May 12, 2018: Class photo is available for download at (optional, no cost for download).
  • May 12, 2018: Return gown after the ceremony, otherwise your credit card will be charged $115.

After Commencement

  • May 13, 2018: Move out of residence hall by noon.
  • May 13, 2018: Update address and contact information with MacDirect to stay in touch with Macalester alumni.
  • October 1, 2018: Review the Graduation Technology Checklist to takeout any email, Google Drive documents, contacts, data, etc. before account is closed.
  • ASAP! Make a 2018 Senior Class Gift contribution!