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Information for Graduating Master's Degree Students

Congratulations! You have entered the homestretch in your graduate studies! Upon successful completion of all ten courses and your Capstone Committee's acceptance of your Capstone project, you will be eligible to walk the stage and be awarded your Master's degree diploma. Master's degree candidates will be formally hooded during commencement in a ceremony conducted by the President, the Provost, and the Dean of the graduate program. This will be an exciting event for everyone who is able to attend!
The commencement ceremony will be held at the California Maritime Academy campus in Vallejo on Saturday, April 25 at 1:30 pm. Individuals who intend to participate in the ceremony are required to be at the campus on Friday, April 24th for a mandatory rehearsal. Commencement Rehearsal is tentatively scheduled for just after noon in Rizza Auditorium. It is followed by the traditional Champagne & Strawberry Toast for graduates and their families sponsored by the CMA Alumni Association. A rehearsal day dinner for graduating Master's degree students and their instructors will follow. ATTENDANCE AT COMMENCEMENT REHEARSAL IS MANDATORY FOR ALL COMMENCEMENT PARTICIPANTS.
Graduates are welcome to have guests attend commencement. Due to limited space, each graduate will be issued tickets for two guests to sit in the outdoor tent where the ceremony will take place. There will be additional open seating in the adjacent Rizza Hall for the rest of your guests where the ceremony will be live-streamed. Please note that it is typically very warm outdoors on graduation day so guests who are susceptible to the heat may prefer to sit indoors in Rizza Hall.

Cal Maritime Will Provide:

  • Rental of Master's Commencement Gown, Hood, Cap and Tassel.
  • Two Guest Tickets for seating in the outdoor tent Reserved Area for the Commencement Ceremony.
  • Parking and Parking Shuttle Services: Parking will be available both on campus and off campus on the day of the event. Maps to off campus parking will be posted on the Commencement website in mid-February. A shuttle will be running between the upper lots, off campus parking and the Commencement tent. A designated lot on campus for Handicapped parking will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. A Handicapped placard will be required as these spaces are in high demand and go very quickly.
  • Rehearsal Day Dinner for Graduate Students and a guest. Additional guests may attend for an additional fee TBD.

Optional Items for Graduate Student Purchase (Not Provided by Cal Maritime):

  • Class Ring: Order through Bookstore through http://colleges.herffjones.com/.
  • Graduate Announcements and/or Invitations: Order through Bookstore through the following link: http://colleges.herffjones.com/college/csum/. BE SURE TO SPECIFY THAT YOU ARE A MASTER'S STUDENT SO THAT YOU GET THE CORRECT ANNOUNCEMENT.
  • Graduation Day Brunch: Brunch tickets are available for purchase and must be reserved and paid for in advance. This will be done through the Brunch Tickets link on this website. In addition to the sit-down brunch, the Morrow Cove Café will be open from 8:30 – 2:00 with a la carte items available.
  • Photos: Individual photos will be taken as you receive your diploma from Cal Maritime President Thomas Cropper, as well as a group photo of the graduate class in full regalia (cap, gown and hood). Order at the event directly from Photographer.
  • Diploma Frame: Please note that there are two sizes of diploma frames available. The Master's program diploma fits the larger size.

Viewing the Commencement Ceremony

There are four ways to view the Commencement ceremony:

  1. In person under the tent on the quad on campus
  2. Viewing the live video in the Rizza Auditorium on campus
  3. Viewing the live video streamed over the Internet. The live broadcast streamed over the Internet will be limited to the first 200 connections.
  4. After Commencement, a video of the ceremony will be available on the Cal Maritime website for viewing and downloading for 30 days.
Reserved Seating: A pair of tickets for a reserved section for family or friends inside the tent will be distributed to each graduate at Commencement practice. Reserved seating must be occupied by ticket holders by 1:00 on the day of the event or the seats can be claimed by those without tickets. There will also be general seating sections both inside and outside the tent at Commencement.
Policy Regarding Seat Saving: Open Seating sections are available outside the tent and in Rizza Auditorium on a first-come, first-served basis. In an effort to be fair to all visitors, each seat may only be claimed by someone sitting in it or directly next to it. Multiple seats may not be saved by single individuals or by placing signs, blankets, coats, or other personal items. Unattended items used to save seats will be confiscated.
Special and Disability Services: Cal Maritime will make every effort to accommodate parents and guests needing disability seating on Commencement day, however accessible seating is limited and advance planning and early arrival is strongly encouraged. Due to space limitations, disabled guests are encouraged to make use of one of the reserved tickets distributed to each participant. Cal Maritime cannot ensure disability seating will be contiguous with other family seating. We do try to provide a seat adjacent to a family member or attendant to accompany those needing accessible seating. Additional accessible seating for our disabled guests is provided in Rizza Auditorium adjacent to the tent and is clearly marked with the International Symbol of Accessibility. Commencement will be streamed live in Rizza Auditorium.
There will be a designated Handicapped parking zone. Those with Handicapped placards are the only vehicles allowed to park in those spaces. If you are transporting a person with disabilities who does not currently have a placard, we recommend they make a request for a temporary parking decal permit from their physician. Disability parking placards are issued by the DMV. http://www.dmv.ca.gov/vr/disabled.htm.
Friday, April 24
Tentative Schedule:  
Event Location
Pick up Cap, Gown and Hood for Rehearsal TBD

MANDATORY Commencement Rehearsal:

Two tickets inside the tent for family or friends will be distributed to each graduate at

Followed by Champagne and Strawberry Reception Quad
RSVP's required. Please RSVP by Wednesday, April 22nd with the Office of Alumni Affairs.
Followed by Grad Student Dinner Compass Room
Rizza Auditorium
Saturday, April 25    


Tickets may be purchased in advance at a reduced rate. As an alternative, the Morrow Cove Café will be open from 8:30-2:00 for light snacks.

Dining Hall
Dress for Commencement TBD
Grad Student Group Photo TBD
Commencement Quad


Please continue to check this space for updates to the commencement schedule and activities