EVMS Commencement

Graduate Instructions

All information is subject to change.

Date and Location

EVMS’ Commencement Ceremony will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 17, 2014 at Norfolk Scope, located at 201 E. Brambleton Avenue in downtown Norfolk between St. Paul’s Boulevard and Monticello Avenue.


Rehearsal: Parking is free for students, faculty, and staff in the Brambleton Lot across the street from Norfolk Scope. While parking is available in the Norfolk Scope underground garage, guests will be charged a cash-only $5 fee upon exiting.

Commencement: Please be prepared to pay for parking on the day of Commencement. Graduates should park in the underground garage below the Scope. Additional parking is available in the Brambleton lot across St. Paul’s Blvd. from the Scope. Parking is a flat fee of $5 (cash only) in either location.

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


There are no tickets for graduation. 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.  All who attend EVMS Commencement are asked to demonstrate the civility and decorum expected at a graduation ceremony. 

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.


Rehearsal for the Commencement Ceremony will begin promptly at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, May 16, 2014 at the Norfolk Scope. Graduates should arrive at 9:30 am for check in.  Attendance at the rehearsal is required for all graduates. 

Graduates will receive their academic regalia and are responsible for bringing their regalia to the Commencement Ceremony on Saturday.

Graduates will participate in a rehearsal and receive further instructions about the Commencement Ceremony.

After the rehearsal, there will be an opportunity for graduates to provide the correct pronunciation of their names to the linguist.

Graduates will also have the opportunity to make arrangements to retain their regalia for an extended period of time, if desired. (See Regalia below.)

Regalia & Attire

On Commencement day (Saturday, May 17, 2014), all 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.

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 allowed to participate in the ceremony.

Staff will be available to assist graduates in donning their regalia. Caps should be worn so that the mortarboard is parallel with the ground, not on the back of the wearer’s head. Tassels should be placed to the left side of the cap. Your hood will be draped over your left arm. Only official EVMS regalia may be worn and no adornments are permitted on the regalia or the caps or mortarboards.

Please wear your regalia at all times. Men only are requested to 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 number. Regalia must be returned by Friday, May 23, 2014. Failure to return regalia will result in a $500 charge.

Cords & Other Embellishments

Graduates are permitted to wear a single national honor society cord with their academic regalia, if it was identified, presented or provided by the program, was earned or awarded while at EVMS, and is approved by the marshals for wear at the graduation Ceremony. The approved cord may be worn with the graduate’s academic regalia with hood presented on stage worn over the cord. No other embellishments to the cap, gown, tassel or hood shall be permitted.

Pre-Ceremony & Processional

Marshals and staff will line up the graduates in proper order for the Processional. The 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 except for your hood; and for your convenience, graduation programs will be on your seat.


Please remain standing for the duration of the Processional and the National Anthem.  ONLY gentlemen should remove their caps for the National Anthem. Graduates should wear their caps at ALL other times during the ceremony.

After the guest speaker’s address, the conferral of earned degrees will begin first for the School of Health Professions then followed by the School of Medicine.

Afterwards, the candidates should rise as instructed one row at a time and proceed to the aisle on the right-hand side of the Scope.  Candidates will have their reader card scanned as they reach the stairs.  They will then hand their reader card to the linguist.  As the candidate’s name is read, the candidate will proceed across stage. 

First, you will hand your hood to the hooding representative for your program. Please turn and face the audience and remove your cap in order to facilitate the placement of the hood. 

You will then accept your diploma covers from the President/Dean (M.D. graduates) or your Program Director (all other degrees). All graduates will shake hands with the President/Dean and other representatives on stage.

You 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. 


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 instructed by the Marshals to exit. 

Post Ceremony

The Commencement Ceremony will end at approximately 12:30 p.m. but may run over. Please do not schedule any personal celebratory activities after the ceremony 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 16, 2014 will collect their live diploma certificates in the Exhibition Hall after the Ceremony. All others must pick up their diplomas from the Office of 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. Staff will be waiting to assist the graduates in collecting regalia.

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 purchasing it) will occur if the regalia is not returned by Friday, May 23, 2014.