Guest Instructions

The information below outlines everything guests need to know to see their graduate in the 2023 commencement ceremony. See Graduate Instructions for information about where graduates need to be on commencement day, when and how they can get there.

Commencement Day Protocols


Registration will not be required for this event.  We do not anticipate a limit on guest tickets for this event.  Additionally, the commencement ceremony will be available via livestream  on

Guest Seating

Guest seating is on a first come, first serve basis.  We ask that guests be seated no later than 8:30AM.  Please allow plenty of time for travel and parking.  Please see the Parking & Transportation map and the Wallace Wade Stadium diagram for additional details.

No pets allowed.  Umbrellas are permitted.

Mask Requirements

Please note: all attendees at the commencement weekend are expected to be vaccinated.   Masks were required but are now recommended inside some Duke buildings and on campus buses and shuttles.

Bag Policy

  • Bags and items larger than 12” x 12” x 6” (including backpacks, duffel bags, large purses, suitcases, wrapped gifts, etc.) are prohibited from entering the venue. Please leave such items in personal vehicles or hotel rooms.
  • If bags are required for medical or childcare reasons, clear bags (12” x 12” x 6” or smaller) are highly recommended to expedite entry and minimize touch points.
  • If larger items are required for a medical or accessibility need, please contact Duke Disability Management for additional information and accommodations.

Staying Cool in the Heat

We encourage guests to hydrate before and during the ceremony.  Water bottles will be located at multiple stations throughout the venue.  Sunscreen is encouraged as well as hats and sunglasses.

Make sure to wear appropriately cool layers and dress for the weather the entire day.  Some walking will be required, so comfortable shoes are recommended.

Tobacco-Free Campus

Duke University is a Tobacco-Free Campus. The use of any tobacco-based product is prohibited, including but not limited to cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, chewing tobacco, snuff, and electronic smoking devices (including e-cigarettes, vaping products, and IQOS). For more information on Duke University’s Tobacco-Free Campus policy, visit

Commencement Weekend Parking & Transportation

Detailed information regarding parking lots, shuttles and campus maps for Commencement 2024 weekend can be found on the Parking & Transportation page.