CUPPA Commencement

Graduation is a celebration of an ending and a beginning. It is a time to commemorate academic achievements and friendships built at UIC. Commencement is a special occasion, one with a long-standing tradition associated with dignified proceedings that surround the granting of degrees.


Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral Degree Candidates in the

College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs

Departments of Public Administration and Urban Planning and Policy

Graduates, degree candidates, and guests are invited to:

CUPPA Commencement

Saturday, May 11, 2019, 9 a.m.

Credit Union 1 Arena (formerly the UIC Pavilion)*

525 South Racine Avenue, Chicago

Guests Enter Gate 3 at the corner of Racine and Harrison Streets. Graduates Enter Through Gate 2 on Harrison Street.


by April 22, 2019

* The use of metal detectors is required for all events at the Credit Union 1 Arena. For safety reasons, bags, purses, backpacks and other large bags may not be permitted. Please see the Credit Union 1 policies here.

Graduate RSVP for May 11, 2019 Ceremony

Caps and Gowns

All graduates participating in the May ceremony must wear academic regalia.

Students are strongly urged to pre-order regalia here.

Regalia will be available for purchase at the UIC Bookstore in late April. See for hours of operation.

  • Bachelor candidates should receive a blue cap, blue gown, and white tassel.
  • MPA and MUPP candidates and graduates should receive a blue gown, blue cap, and peacock blue hood and tassel.
  • PhD candidates wear the same color regalia, regardless of major – red cap, red gown, hood lined with red and indigo, and gold tassel.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does participating in the ceremony mean I graduate?
No, you officially graduate once all of your grades are submitted and you have met the expectations of the degree requirements.  

Commencement is a ceremony students may participate in for the purpose of celebrating the completion of an academic degree program. Graduation occurs when the student has completed all requirements and is awarded a degree. Graduation can occur during any semester. Attendance at Commencement is not required for graduation.

Where is CUPPA commencement?
Credit Union 1 Arena. Information on location and directions here

When do I need to arrive at commencement?
On the day of commencement, Saturday, May 11, 2019, you must be present and fully dressed in your cap and gown and ready to be seated at 8:45 a.m.

What time can my guests begin to arrive?
The Credit Union 1 doors open at 8 a.m.  The ceremony will start promptly at 9 a.m.

Do I or my guests need a ticket to attend the CUPPA commencement?
NO. The College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs does NOT issue tickets to commencement. The number of guests is UNLIMITED.

(Please note this may NOT be the case for other colleges at UIC. Other ceremonies have different requirements so please contact the specific college for exact ticketing information. The full schedule of UIC commencement ceremonies can be found here.)

How long does CUPPA commencement last?
Approximately 90 minutes.

Do I have to wear a cap and gown?
Yes, all graduates participating in the ceremony must wear academic regalia, which can be ordered from the UIC Bookstore. More information here.

Are there items my guests and I cannot bring into the Credit Union 1 Arena?
Yes. The Credit Union 1 Arena has limited and/or prohibited certain items in the venue. Metal detectors will be in use at the Arena. More information here.

Will my name be announced during the ceremony?
Yes! Students will be individually recognized and will process across the platform when their  name is announced in degree order.

Will I be able to obtain copies of the photographs taken of me during the ceremony?
Yes. Within 2 to 3 days following the ceremony, the photographs will be available via the photography company’s webpage. You will also receive proofs and order forms from the photography company 2 to 7 days following the ceremony. 

Will commencement be webcast?
Yes. Find information here. Videos will also be available for purchase after the ceremony.

Will I be able to obtain a video of CUPPA commencement?
Yes. Videos will be available for purchase after the ceremony.

How do I qualify for Latin Honors?
Latin Honors are awarded to graduating students based on UIC grade point average. Students eligible for Latin Honors will receive an email notification from the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs. Please see this page for more information on how to qualify. Please note that because Spring 2019 grades will not yet be posted at the time of the Commencement ceremony, the determination of Latin Honors for potential Spring graduates will be based on grades reported through the end of the term prior to graduation. UIC will reserve the right to make permanent adjustments to the list of students receiving Latin Honors based on final UIC grade point average information.

Where do I pick up my honor cord?
Information coming soon.

Where can I order announcements and/or diploma frames?
Announcements and diploma frames may be purchased from Jostens. More information here.

Who should I contact with questions about my diploma or to update the address my diploma will be sent to?
Please see the Office of Registration and Records at UIC for more information here.

When and how do I get my diploma?
Please see the Office of Registration and Records at UIC for more information here.

Who do I contact if I or my guests require special accommodations
Please contact the Credit Union 1 Arena staff,

Who do I contact for additional questions or concerns not addressed here?
Please see the UIC Commencement website here or contact