The day of celebrating four years of learning, growth, and hard work is almost here! The Hendrix College community is looking forward to welcoming families to campus May 15 for the 137th Hendrix College Commencement. The 2021 Commencement ceremony is being planned with great care, and with the primary goal of making it possible for the maximum number of people to safely share in the experience of this day . Please remember that all elements of the Commencement plan have been designed with this goal as our guiding principle.
The plan for May 15 is to hold a single ceremony outdoors, in Young-Wise Memorial Stadium, at 9 a.m.
Stadium gates will open at 7:30 a.m. (90 minutes before start time).
The ceremony will be livestreamed at
www.facebook.com/hendrixcollege for those unable to attend in person.
The Inclement Weather Plan
will not be in effect for the 137th Hendrix College
Commencement exercises. A single outdoor ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. CDT in
Young-Wise Memorial Stadium on Saturday, May 15, 2021.
If weather permits, everyone will graduate together at 9 a.m. in Young-Wise Memorial Stadium. Guests’ tickets will indicate their student’s ceremony start time under the inclement weather plan in the Ticket Information section on the tickets.
There is a limit of four (4) guests per graduate. Each graduate will need to reserve the tickets and distribute them to their guests. If outdoors, each student’s four guests will sit together. The guest seating areas are 1) the east-facing bleachers, which include ADA accessible seating; and 2) sections on the field that are not reserved for graduates and faculty.
To assist with traffic flow and distancing between parties, please have your party of four guests enter the stadium together.
In case weather moves the ceremony indoors, tickets are pre-categorized with “E” and “R” designations to sort attendees into the Event Gym and Recreation Gym. These designations will not matter for the outdoor ceremony. However, each party should decide which members use which type of ticket in case events move indoors. Two guests are allowed in the Event Gym and two in the Recreation Gym, and guests will be seated in pairs to allow for adequate spacing between parties.
Students with double majors in different areas will “walk” in the area of their primary major, which determines their ceremony time if the weather moves events indoors.
Because of ongoing public health concerns, we will not be able to conduct a lottery for extra tickets as we have done in the past.
Please enjoy your graduate’s moment from your seating area, knowing that:
Image magnification screens will be above the stage to enhance viewing.
A professional photographer will take individual photos of each graduate after they leave the stage, and these images will be available for purchase. Students may remove their masks right before they cross the stage to receive their diplomas and for these individual photos.
In addition, Hendrix has a second professional photographer covering the full event, and those photos will be available as free downloads from the
Hendrix Flickr page the week after Commencement.
There will not be space available beside the stage for taking personal photos.
No high heels/spike heels on the football field. They will damage the artificial turf, and could cause injury to the wearer. Much of the guest seating is on the field, so we strongly recommend that all attendees follow this rule.
[Updated April 28, 2021] Masks and social distancing will be required
indoors, and while in motion outdoors. Public health
experts continue to recommend masking and vaccination as the two best actions
we can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The CDC on April 27 released
new guidelines on outdoor
masking for fully vaccinated people. Therefore, fully vaccinated
people may remove their masks while they are seated in Young-Wise Memorial
Stadium. We do ask that all Commencement attendees wear their masks
before they reach their seats, and when they leave their seats for any reason.
If inclement weather moves ceremonies indoors, masking will be required of
guests for the entire ceremony. (The only exceptions to the masking rule are
for the person speaking at the podium during the ceremony, for graduates as they
cross the stage to receive their diplomas, and for each graduate’s professional
photo that will be taken after they leave the stage.)
ADA accessible parking will be available in the lot to the north and west of the WAC. Refer to the
Commencement Day Parking Map for details.
Student marshals and staff will dismiss guests following the ceremony. After the faculty marshals escort the students from the stadium, student marshals and staff members will dismiss guests by row and section. Please follow the directions these volunteers provide.
Please leave the area as soon as possible after the event. Because of pandemic precautions, the traditional reception will not be held. In addition, guests who were not seated on the field will not be permitted to walk onto the field.
Please make a plan before May 15 for meeting up with your graduate after the ceremony. To maintain distancing requirements, this location should be outside the stadium (for example, your parking spot, an area in the Village at Hendrix, or perhaps a location near your graduate’s residence).
Other important dates and times for graduates:
will need to order regalia by April 20, 2021, to ensure they receive it in time for Commencement. Please place your order at
The Senior Meeting will be held Monday, May 3, at 3 p.m. in the WAC Event Gym.
The virtual Baccalaureate service will premiere Friday, May 14, at 6 p.m. on the Hendrix College Facebook page.
We are working hard to make the 137th Hendrix College Commencement a memorable experience for graduates and families. The precautions outlined above will maximize the number of people who can safely share in the experience. Thank you for your attention to these details as we all anticipate celebrating our graduates.
The Hendrix College Commencement Planning Committee
Hendrix College Office of Parent Engagement