EVMS Commencement

Graduate Instructions

All information is subject to change.

Rehearsal (MANDATORY)

WHEN: Friday, May 15, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. Check in begins at 9:30 a.m.

WHERE: Exhibition Hall, Norfolk Scope, 201 E. Brambleton Avenue, Norfolk, VA 23510

WHY: Graduates will pick up regalia, receive instructions on Commencement, meet with Commencement readers for name pronunciations and more.


WHEN: Saturday, May 16, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. Graduates must check in at Norfolk Scope Exhibition Hall by 8:30 a.m. Exhibition Hall doors will open for graduates only beginning at 8:00 a.m.

WHERE: Norfolk Scope, 201 E. Brambleton Avenue, Norfolk, VA 23510


REHEARSAL: Parking is free for students, faculty, and staff in the Brambleton Lot across the street from Norfolk Scope. Self-pay parking is available in the Norfolk Scope underground garage.

COMMENCEMENT: Graduates should park in the underground garage below the Scope for a flat fee of $5. Additional parking is available in the Brambleton lot across St. Paul’s Blvd. from the Scope for a flat fee of $5 (cash only).

The City of Norfolk also provides abundant self-pay parking near Norfolk Scope

Commencement Protocol and Admission

Commencement is a significant milestone for graduates. All who attend EVMS Commencement are asked to demonstrate the civility and decorum expected at a graduation ceremony. 

There are no tickets for Commencement. General admission seating is available to all on a first-come, first-served basis. The doors for general admission will open at 8:45 a.m.  Families and guests will not be allowed to enter Norfolk Scope before that time. “Seat saving” will not be allowed. 

Please be reminded that no babysitting services are provided. Parents and guests with children will be encouraged to leave immediately if their children become disruptive at any time during the ceremony.  We thank you for respecting those in attendance.

Please direct family and guests here for additional information on the Ceremony.


On Commencement day, gentlemen must wear a collared shirt and tie with dark pants (no jeans) and appropriate footwear (no athletic footwear). Ladies must wear dark low-heeled footwear and avoid wearing conspicuous jewelry outside their regalia. If you do not wear appropriate attire, you will not be permitted to participate in the ceremony.

Academic Regalia

Graduates will receive their regalia at rehearsal and are responsible for bringing it to Commencement on Saturday. Please note:

  • Remove regalia from packaging and hang to release wrinkles before Commencement. Steam or cool iron if necessary.
  • Caps should be worn so that the mortarboard is parallel with the ground.
  • Tassels should be placed to the left side of the cap.
  • Only official EVMS regalia may be worn and no adornments are permitted on the regalia or the caps or mortarboards.
  • Gentleman should remove their caps for the national anthem.

*Note: If you would like to keep your regalia temporarily for the purpose of picture taking, you may make arrangements at rehearsal on Friday or after the Ceremony on Saturday. Graduates wanting to keep regalia must provide a credit card. Regalia must be returned by Friday, May 23, 2015. Failure to return regalia will result in a $500 charge.


All Master’s level candidates will wear their hoods as they process into the arena. All Doctoral candidates (PhD, MD) will carry their hoods over the left arm and will be hooded on stage.

A new EVMS tradition starting this year, graduating PhD and MD students have the opportunity to be hooded on stage during commencement by family members who meet certain criteria.

Cords & Other Embellishments

Graduates are permitted to wear up to three national honor society cords and/or stoles with their academic regalia, if they were identified, presented or provided by a program, were earned or awarded while at EVMS, and are approved by the marshals for wear at the graduation Ceremony. No other embellishments to the cap, gown, tassel or hood shall be permitted.


PROCESSIONAL: Processional line-up will begin at 9:30 a.m. and the Ceremony will start at 10:00 a.m. sharp. You may not carry anything with you during the processional with the exception of Doctoral candidates carrying their hoods.

Student Marshals will direct graduates to the appropriate seating location. Please remain standing for the duration of the Processional and the national anthem.  Gentlemen should remove their caps for the national anthem. Graduates should wear their caps at ALL other times during the ceremony.

PRESENTATION OF CANDIDATES: After the Commencement speaker’s address, the conferral of earned degrees will begin first for the School of Health Professions then followed by the School of Medicine. Candidates will:

  • Rise as instructed one row at a time and proceed to the aisle on the right-hand side of the Scope.
  • Have their reader card scanned as they reach the stairs.
  • Hand their reader card to the reader on stage.
  • Wait for their name and academic honor, if applicable, to be spoken.
  • Master’s candidates will cross the stage, accept their diploma cover from the Program Director and then shake hands with the President/Dean and other representatives on stage.
  • Doctoral candidates will hand their hood to the hooding representative for their program. Turn and face the audience to facilitate the placement of the hood. Then accept your diploma covers from the President/Dean (MD graduates) or your Program Director (PhD). Shake hands with the President/Dean and other representatives on stage.
  • All graduates will then descend the stairs and return to your seat. 

After all graduates have crossed the stage, Dr. Parish will then ask all physician assistants in attendance and the newly graduated physician assistants to rise and join him in reciting the Master of Physician Assistant Oath in unison.

Dr. Flenner will then ask all physicians in attendance and the newly graduated physicians to rise and join him in reciting the Hippocratic Oath in unison. 

RECESSIONAL: Following the Hippocratic Oath, the Chief Marshal will lead the graduates out of the arena. All graduates must remain at their seats until they have been dismissed by the Marshals. 

Post Ceremony

Commencement will last approximately 2 – 3 hours. Please do not schedule any celebratory activities before 1:30 p.m. to allow time for class photos, diploma pick-up and returning regalia.

Graduates who complete their degree requirements by Friday, May 15, 2015 will collect their live diploma certificates in the Exhibition Hall after the Ceremony. All others must pick up their diplomas from the the Registrar after they have completed their degree requirements. Please contact the Registrar for more information.

Class photos will also be taken by program in the Exhibition Hall after the ceremony. Programs will be called, one at a time; please wait at your table until your program is called. Do not depart until your picture has been taken. Class photos will be available for downloading for free at www.flickr.com/photos/evms.

Graduates should return the academic regalia to the program table before leaving the Exhibition Hall.

Graduates also have the option to retain their regalia only if they have made prior arrangements at Rehearsal or provided a credit card after the Ceremony. A charge of $500 (the cost of purchase) will occur if the regalia is not returned by Friday, May 23, 2015.