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Commencement Ceremony

Honoring our 2023 Graduates

Saint Rose Graduation Commencement 2019

Congratulations, Saint Rose 2023 Graduates!

This is your one-stop-shop for all things commencement. Be sure you’re ready to go for your big day!

Saturday, May 13, 2023, at 10 a.m. at the MVP Arena
Whether you finished your degree in December 2022 or will be finishing up in May or August 2023, you are part of the Class of 2023, and we can’t wait to celebrate you at our May commencement ceremony.

Attention: Traffic Notice
There will be several events happening near the MVP Arena on the morning of Commencement, which will cause an increase in traffic within the city of Albany starting around 8:30 a.m. that day. In an attempt to avoid some of the city congestion, we suggest approaching the MVP Arena and parking lots from I-787 when possible.

For a map and directions to each parking lot from I-787 please see directions and parking section on this page.


When: Saturday, May 13, at 10 a.m. Doors open two hours prior to the start of the ceremony.

Where: MVP Arena (formerly the Times Union Center), 51 S. Pearl Street, Albany.

Guest tickets: At this time, there are no capacity limits and tickets are not required.

Livestream: The ceremony will be livestreamed. You’ll find it on commencement day by going to the homepage of the Saint Rose website or visiting the livestream link.

But … I have so many questions: Find parking info, graduate arrival details, and more below.

Graduate checklist

  1. Check your graduation status: See the Check Your Graduation Status section for how to know.
  2. Don’t forget to RSVP: After you’re confirmed as graduating, be sure to let us know you plan to attend the ceremony. Fill out this form to let us know you will be attending the ceremony. Graduates should RSVP by April 7 to attend the ceremony.
  3. Fill out this form to be featured in our online graduate gallery. Please note that your submission won’t automatically appear and may take a few days to be posted.
  4. Head to HireStrose and create your sign-in if you haven’t already. It only takes a minute, and you’ll just need your student ID number (which we’re pretty sure you have memorized by now). Once you log on, you’ll be prompted to take a short career survey. We want to be able to track the great jobs you’re getting – or get you set up to tell us about it when you land one! This is important to making sure we’re preparing you well for the career world.
  5. Are you an undergrad in the Class of 2023? Be sure to check out the Senior Week Activities section and plan to celebrate with your class.
  6. Want a senior photo? Find that info under Senior Photos.
  7. Order your cap and gown. See details under Graduation Attire.
  8. Arrive at the ceremony and be ready to celebrate YOU. See Graduate Arrival section for more information.


You can check your graduation status in DegreeWorks. If you do not see a status, you need to submit a degree application/apply to graduate. It doesn’t happen automatically. Here are the instructions on how to apply.

Under Graduation Status, you will see one of four statuses. Here’s what they mean:

  • APP: Means you applied/we have received the degree application. It is being reviewed.
  • PEN: This means you’re approved for graduation assuming successful completion of your current courses.
  • NOK: This means you are not approved for graduation, and you have outstanding degree requirements to meet.
  • WLK: This means you are scheduled to complete your degree in August but are eligible to participate in the May commencement ceremony.
  • Honors: Please note that honors, such as Summa cum laude, are only granted at the bachelor’s degree level. There are no honors at the graduate level.

At the time of the ceremony, grades are not yet in for the spring semester, so honors at commencement are based upon work completed prior. A student’s final honors, which includes their last semester, will appear on their diploma along with their degree. Diplomas are mailed in July. Final honors, academic major, and degree will appear on the final transcript. GPAs for honors are as follows: Summa cum laude 3.9-4.0, Magna cum laude 3.7-3.89, and Cum laude 3.5-3.69.

Need help? Email or call 518.458.5464.

2023 commencement speaker

Hai Ling '93

Hai Ling ’93, co-president of international markets at Mastercard.

Mastercard exec and Saint Rose alum Hai Ling to serve as 2023 commencement speaker
Hai Ling, co-president of international markets at Mastercard, member of The College of Saint Rose’s Board of Trustees, and a 1993 graduate of the College, will deliver the commencement address at the College’s 2023 commencement ceremony on May 13. Ling will also be awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.

Read more


All caps and gowns must be ordered online from The College of Saint Rose Campus Store, and they can either be sent directly to a home address or picked up at the bookstore beginning May 8.

Order deadlines:

To pick up your order in store: Order by April 2

To receive your order in the mail: Order by April 19

The Campus Store will also have a table at MVP Arena on commencement day for those who couldn’t pick up their orders or forgot a piece of their commencement attire.

Cords and stoles:

Below is information about some of the cords and stoles available to those graduates who qualify.

Please note that individual honors societies and organizations may have their own cords and stoles, and the distribution of those is at the discretion of those organizations.

Cords for undergraduate academic honors:

Eligibility: Undergraduate students who achieve cum laude, magna cum laude, or summa cum laude are eligible to receive a cord in the colors that signify their achievement.

Honors are as follows:

  • Summa cum laude cumulative GPA 3.9-4.0 (black and gold double cords)
  • Magna cum laude cumulative GPA 3.7-3.89 (white and gold double cords)
  • Cum laude cumulative GPA 3.5-3.69 (single white cord)

At the time of the ceremony, grades are not yet in for the spring semester, so honors at the commencement are based upon work completed prior. A student’s final honors will appear on their diploma along with their degree. Final honors, your academic major, and degree will appear on your final transcript.

Please note that this status is based on cumulative GPA (not like the Dean’s List, which is based on GPA by semester). The campus bookstore will confirm your status when you pick up your cords.

Where/when to pick up:We’ll announce the date that cords for academic honors will be available in the Saint Rose bookstore soon. There will also be a bookstore table at the commencement ceremony with extra caps and gowns, where students can pick up cords the morning of the ceremony.

Cost: Free

Kente, Multicultural, and Lavender stoles:

  • Kente and Multicultural stoles are available for ALANA (African/African American, Latino, Asian, and Native American) graduates.
  • Lavender stoles are available for students who identify as LGBTQIA+ and allies.

To reserve a stole: Graduates can register here for a graduation stole. They need to register by Sunday, April 16. Registration will include the opportunity to participate in a stole-donning ceremony on Sunday, May 7 or the Lavender Ceremony on Saturday, May 6.

Where to pick up: Graduates who have registered and did not participate in either aforementioned ceremony can pick up stoles from from Katiuzca Loaiza-Espinoza Room 218 in the Student Development Suite in the Events and Athletics Center by May 11.

Cost: Free


The address for MVP Arena is: 51 South Pearl Street, Albany, NY 12207

Recommended Parking:

  1. MVP Lot – The garage located directly behind MVP Arena, which provides direct, covered access to this building on the Concourse level (for this event it is the main guest entrance and also where wheelchair and special needs seating is located). Ushers will be available to assist with seating at this parking garage entrance to the arena. The fee for parking is $5. Entry to this garage is directly off of Market Street just before you reach Eagle Street.
  2. Grand Street Lot – 45 Grand Street, Albany, 12207, is available at no cost and close to MVP.
  3. Green Hudson Garage – 45 Hudson Ave, Albany, 12207, It is run through Albany Parking. $5.00 for the day (card payment only).

MVP Arena Parking Locations and Directions


  • Graduates must enter through Beaver Street entrance of the MVP Arena.
  • Doors will open two hours prior to the start of the ceremony.
  • If you’re having trouble figuring out how to wear the attire, you’re not alone. That’s why we have this video with instructions on how to wear your hood.


  • When you arrive, you will be given a card that includes your name and a number that corresponds to your place in the procession and degree-receiving line. You will be asked to locate your number on a ribbon taped to the floor in the line-up area and to stand in your spot in the appropriate line by 9:15 a.m. Please do not bring extra items such as hangers, coats, purses, etc. You may not have the same seat after you process across stage, so don’t leave anything at your seat. The College does not assume responsibility for valuables.
  • All students need to line up according to the number of their cards. Your line placement is by school, degree, and alphabetical order. If you are out of place, guests and those watching the livestream may miss you crossing the stage. Staying in order will also assist the photographers with matching the correct person to the correct photos.


When it is time to confer degrees, faculty marshals will direct you by rows to the ramp at the right side of the stage. As you move across the stage, you will hand your name card to the person standing at the first lectern. Your name will be announced as you walk across the stage. Continue across the stage to receive your diploma cover and are congratulated by College officials. You will exit the stage using the ramp on the left side.


  • Individual graduation photos will be taken when you receive your diploma cover and after you exit the stage. The photos will be emailed by Grad Images to your Saint Rose email account. You can make your selection and purchase directly through Grad Images.
  • Both a photographer and videographer will be taking photos/video during the ceremony for the College’s social media. Share your photos on social using the hashtag #strosegraduate. Saint Rose graduation-themed profile pic frames and GIFs will be available for Facebook and Instagram on this page as the ceremony nears.


MVP Arena security: MVP Arena has security procedures for all events held at their facility, which include metal detectors, bag searches, limitation of allowed bag size, and if needed, pat downs.

ADA accessibility: Graduating students who require seating/walking or other accommodations for themselves (i.e., ADA accessible seating, sign language interpreter, assistance crossing stage, etc.), should contact Tina McMahon in the Events Scheduling and Administration office as soon as possible at 518.454.5171 or

We suggest that any guests with mobility limitations that are unable to walk long distances or climb stairs use a wheelchair. Wheelchairs are NOT available at the MVP Arena. Please consider borrowing or renting one if your guest does not own one. Limited accessible seating will be available upon entering the arena on a first-come, first-served basis. Please check in with one of our ADA tables upon arrival for assistance.

Cameras: Please note, MVP Arena has made an exception to its usual policy, and cameras will be allowed at commencement.

Rehearsal: There is no rehearsal for commencement.

Diplomas: Class of 2023 graduates who completed their degrees in December 2022 will receive them by mid-April. For May and August graduates, final verification of degree requirements will not be completed prior to commencement day. So, those who complete their degree requirements in May and August, will receive only a diploma case at the ceremony. Diplomas are mailed. Please be sure to clear any holds (financial, library, athletic, parking, etc.). A diploma or transcript will not be issued if you have any outstanding obligations to the College.

Wifi at MVP Arena: Free WIFI is brought to you by Family Danz. Once you arrive, find and connect to the available network labeled MVP free WIFI by Family Danz

Restroom availability: There are large restrooms located at three of the four corners of the arena.

On-site florist: There will be a florist on site to provide flowers for your graduates.


Senior Portraits
April 19 to 22
Celebrate your success with a senior portrait! We will provide a cap/gown plus great Saint Rose props to use, and you can also do some in your own outfit. This will be a fun, casual 15-minute portrait session, combining studio lighting with natural light around campus. Photos will be done in the Events and Athletics Center Atrium; weather permitting, they may also be able to do some photos outside. You will be able to view all images in an online gallery, and you can also optionally purchase a package of prints, digitals, or both to share with family and friends. No session fee!

Schedule Senior Photos


A representative from Jostens will be on campus on April 27 and 28 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. They will be at the tables outside of the Camelot Room to help students place orders for class rings.


The Student Association will host Senior Week May 8 through 12.

  • Monday, May 8:
    Are You Smarter than a Faculty Member
    St. Joes Auditorium
    7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 9:
    Senior Olympics
    Campus Green
    4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Wednesday, May 10:
    Class Campfire
    Campus Green
    7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 11:
    Get Ready to Walk With Tacos
    Campus Green
    5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Friday, May 12:
    21+ Brunch
    Campus Green
    12 p.m. to 2 p.m.


Find the Class of 2023 Graduate Gallery here, where those earning undergraduate or graduate degrees in December 2022 or May or August 2023 can complete the form and upload your photo to be included. Please note that your submission won’t automatically appear and may take a few days to be posted.


The link to access a recording of the commencement ceremony will be available on this page when it’s ready.