Find answers here to many of the more commonly asked questions about Commencement. For additional questions or concerns, please contact EVMS Special Events. Find more details about this year's Commencement.

COVID-19 & Public Health Information

COVID-19 is an extremely contagious disease that can lead to severe illness and death. Although preventative measures set forth by Commencement facilities and EVMS guidelines will be in place to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, there is an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 in any public place or setting where people gather. As such, there is no guarantee, express or implied, that participants or guests at  EVMS Commencement or Commencement related activities  will not be exposed to/become infected with  COVID-19.   Attendees voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and should evaluate their personal risk when determining whether to attend Commencement or a Commencement related activity.

Our current COVID-19 guidance does not require masking, proof of vaccination or a negative test result to attend Commencement exercises.

Eastern Virginia Medical School continues to monitor developments in the COVID-19 pandemic. Plans for Commencement and activities remain subject to change based on developments locally, statewide, and nationally, as well as changes in EVMS policy. EVMS will send an email to all registered guests and participants with any specific requirements in advance of Commencement. To stay up to date, please visit this website and check your EVMS email.

Graduates and Returning Alumni, if you have been exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 case, are showing symptoms of COVID-19, have a medical or other emergency and are unable to participate in EVMS Commencement, please notify EVMS Special Events at your earliest convenience. For last minute or day-of cancellations, please call 757.965.8500 to speak to a live person.

For other guests, if you have been exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 case, or are showing symptoms of COVID-19, please do not attend EVMS Commencement or other events in person to ensure the health and safety of others. A live stream of the Commencement Ceremony will be available on the EVMS homepage.

Commencement Ceremony

The EVMS Commencement Ceremony is Saturday, May 14, 2022 at 10 a.m. EDT at Norfolk Scope located at 201 E. Brambleton Avenue. Find more details about the Commencement Ceremony.

Tickets are not needed for the Commencement Ceremony, but may be required for other events. Review the full Schedule of Events for more information.

You do need to register to attend Commencement. Graduates should follow the Graduate Checklist to ensure they keep on track to meet other deadlines and requirements.

Returning Alumni should follow the Returning Alumni Checklist to ensure they keep on track to meet other deadlines and requirements.

Yes. Graduates and Returning Alumni should follow the instructions to utilize Name-Coach to record their name. Doing so will provide the Commencement readers the opportunity to hear your recorded names in advance. Please be sure that the name you record matches the name that you submitted to appear in the printed Commencement program and other Commencement-related digital and print materials. 

Instructions will be sent by email. Name recordings must be completed by Monday, March 21, 2022. For questions or more information, please contact EVMS Special Events.

All doctoral hoodings by family members must be individually approved by EVMS according to EVMS administration’s guidelines. View the EVMS Doctoral Hooding Commencement Policy.

Those who are eligible will submit a request for approval through the Commencement registration site. Upon approval, eligible graduates and returning alumni will be contacted with all necessary information about your (and your family member’s) role in the Commencement Ceremony. If you have any questions, please email EVMS Special Events

Yes, EVMS Commencement Ceremony will be live streamed and can be found on the EVMS home page. Recordings of the ceremony will also be available after the event on a variety of platforms as well as on the EVMS website.

Learn about Elias Zerhouni, MD, the keynote speaker for EVMS' 2022 Commencement Ceremony.

Find suggested guest attire

Find information about special accommodations for guests. 

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 the Norfolk Scope before that time. “Seat saving” will not be allowed.

Parents of small children will find family restrooms at Gates 3 and 11.

In case of an emergency during Commencement, please remain seated until further instructions are announced. Scope staff will guide guests and graduates to the nearest exit if needed. If medical attention is needed, please seek out a Scope usher or an EVMS police officer who will notify on-site emergency responders.

Read about connecting with your Graduate after the ceremony.

Attendees and graduates may only bring unopened disposable bottles into the venue. Concessions stands will not be open.

Read about the Photo and Video Policy for EVMS Commencement.

Find out how to obtain pictures of your graduate.

Printed programs will be available at the Commencement Ceremony for all guests. Graduates will receive a program at their seat. We will also have a digital version of the program available online. If you would like an additional copy after Commencement Day, please email EVMS Special Events

Read more about Ceremony Decorum.


You will have the opportunity to order regalia (gowns, caps/tams) online directly from Oak Hall from mid-February until Monday, March 21, 2022. For the Class of 2022, the cost of regalia, as well as the direct shipping costs to your home, will be covered by EVMS. If you are a Returning Alumni and still have your complimentary regalia provided during your year of graduation, please use this. If you did not retain your regalia, you will need to reorder replacement regalia or items directly from Oak Hall at your own cost.

Typically between 2-4 weeks depending on location and order date. Please allow additional time for international orders.

We will have staff onsite to assist Graduates and Returning Alumni. Please be sure to bring all components of your regalia (gown, hood, tassel, military cord and mortarboard or tam) to the Exhibition Hall. We highly suggest taking it out of the box and getting it pressed, steamed or at least letting it air out prior to the Ceremony. Find more information about required regalia.

View a quick video from EVMS' regalia partner, Oak Hall, for how to properly wear Master's & Doctoral regalia.

Since all of EVMS’ candidates for graduation are masters level and above, tassels should always be worn to the left. The transition of tassel (from right to left) is a tradition used in undergraduate ceremonies.

An honor cord designating military service will be mailed with your regalia from Oak Hall. EVMS will provide honor cords and stoles from Alpha Omega Alpha, Delta Omega, Pi Alpha and Gold Humanism Honor Society to graduating students. Honor cords and stoles will be picked up the morning of Commencement at your program table during check-In. Returning Alumni walking at Commencement should bring their honor cords provided during the year of their graduation. If a replacement honor cord or stole is needed, please email EVMS Special Events. For more information, please contact the faculty advisors for the honor societies.

Diploma Information

Yes, all students that were deemed eligible for Commencement by the EVMS Registrar and Program Directors will be included in the Commencement Ceremony. Diplomas will only be mailed to students’ addresses after they have successfully completed all the necessary academic requirements. Students should submit the Diploma Address Form by Monday, March 21, 2022. 

EVMS is pleased to provide its graduates with Certified Electronic Credentials. You will receive an email with a link to download your credentials when it is available from our trusted partner, CeCredentialTrust. Find additional information about Certified Electronic Credentials.

Travel & Hotels

Find information about travel, including driving directions and parking information. 

Special rates are available at several area hotels.

Additional Information

Yes! All 2020 and 2021 graduates are invited to cross the stage in person at any traditional Commencement until 2025. Alumni wishing to participate and walk in this year’s in-person ceremony must register to attend before Monday, March 21, 2022 or notify EVMS Special Events for future years.

You may order formal, printed announcements and related items through our vendor, Signature Announcements. Additionally, EVMS will provide a complimentary digital email invitation/announcement that you may forward to family and friends to notify them of your participation in EVMS’ Commencement.

Find information for ordering flowers for your graduate.

The 2022 EVMS Commencement app will keep you informed of Commencement deadlines and important updates. The app will be available in early April. You will receive a message by email for instructions to download the app.

Students who receive a graduation award will initially receive a PDF award certificate via email. Framed certificates will be assembled and mailed in late April 2022 or presented at various program ceremonies. Certain awards come with stipends, which will be mailed to addresses collected during registration. A staff member will reach out via email with additional information and instructions. Most award winners (selected before April 1) will be acknowledged in the printed Commencement program and in other forms of media related to the Commencement ceremony and promotions.

You may purchase EVMS branded items from the Matthews EVMS Bookstore. The bookstore will be open Thursday, May 12 and Friday, May 13 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. It will be closed on Saturday, May 14.

Yes. EVMS will allow students to come to campus to take an outdoor graduation photo (i.e. in front of the Brickell Library Fountain or on TowneBank lawn). Access to EVMS indoor facilities require an active EVMS badge, a mask, and self-monitoring to ensure you are symptom free.

An EVMS backdrop will also be available in the Exhibition Hall for photos in your regalia on the day of Commencement.

EVMS Alumni Relations is interested in maintaining an ongoing relationship, following your successes after graduation, and keeping you informed of upcoming events or opportunities to volunteer. Access the online alumni community to personalize your profile, network with alumni, learn about upcoming events and more.

Please contact EVMS Special Events.