Heritage College Class of 2021 Commencement Ceremony
Saturday, May 8, at 2 p.m.
Monday, May 3, 6:00 - 7:30 p.m.: Virtual student rehearsal (graduates only)
Saturday, May 8: Commencement at Peden Stadium – 200 Richland Ave., Athens, OH
- 12:30 p.m. – Peden Stadium gates open
- 12:30 p.m. – Graduates begin arriving for check-in and lineup
- 2:00 p.m. – Commencement ceremony begins
Personal Health Screening: All guests entering Peden Stadium are advised to conduct a personal health screening before arriving to campus. Those who feel ill, have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, have been exposed to someone with symptoms of COVID-19, have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, or who have tested positive themselves must stay home. Click here to learn more about the CDC’s health guidelines.
Mask Policy: All graduates, guests and staff must wear a mask for the duration of the ceremony. Masks are expected to be worn over the nose and mouth We will have adequate signage that displays Ohio University’s Mask Policy. The Mask Policy will be enforced by event staff.
Hand Sanitization: We will have hand sanitizers for use at all main entrances. All restrooms will have adequate hand washing supplies.
Physical Distancing Measures: We will have adequate directional signage and ground markings to better navigate common areas while practicing physical distancing.
Seating: Seating areas will follow Ohio University, Athens City-County Health Department and the State of Ohio’s Covid-19 Guidelines for Stadium capacities at the time of the ceremony. A pattern of four seats will be arrayed throughout the stadium bowl and distanced from the adjacent set of seats. Guests are expected to sit in their assumed seats and not move toward or join another group. Failure to follow the direction of event personnel or law enforcement can result in ejection from the facility.
Bag Checks: There will be contactless bag checks upon entry into Peden Stadium. However, we encourage guests not to bring bags into the stadium.
Weather Safety: Click here to view the inclement weather plan for the 2021 Commencement ceremony.
Prohibited Items: Click here to view the list of prohibited items in Peden Stadium. Please note: Umbrellas are the only exception on this list. Umbrellas are permitted at the Commencement ceremony.
Food/Beverage: Due to our mask policy, food and beverages are prohibited in the stadium. The concession stand will not be open. We advise guests to eat before/after the ceremony. Bottles of water will be available in the stadium for guests.
Information for Graduates
Each graduate will be permitted to invite up to four guests to the in-person ceremony. Instructions on how to obtain tickets have been sent to all graduates. All guests must present a mobile ticket upon entry to the stadium, except for children two and under. Children two and under are permitted without a ticket but must sit on the lap of a ticket holder. Seating is general admission. For questions regarding tickets, please contact Ray Dixson at email@example.com.
Please order your academic regalia by April 17, 2021, to ensure that you will have it in time for the ceremony. All graduates who plan to participate in Commencement must wear regalia. Please purchase your academic regalia HERE.
Check-In and Lineup
All graduates who attend the in-person ceremony will check in at the Walter Fieldhouse, located next to Peden Stadium. Please arrive dressed in your academic regalia. At the fieldhouse, graduates will check-in, receive honor cords (if applicable), have their graduation photo taken and line up for the ceremonial procession. Graduates may begin arriving to the fieldhouse at 12:30 p.m. and are asked to arrive no later than 1:30 p.m.
All graduates who attend the in-person ceremony will have their name called as they approach the Commencement stage. Graduates should choose one of two options for the hooding process:
- Graduates who wish to be hooded on the stage during the ceremony will be hooded by their campus dean. Graduates should carry their hood into the ceremony with them and hand it to the dean on the stage.
- Graduates who wish to not be hooded on the stage during the ceremony should arrive to the event wearing their hood.
Graduates who are viewing the livestream ceremony remotely will have their name called after all in-person graduate names are called. Full event logistics will be shared with graduates at the Commencement rehearsal.
Diplomas will be mailed to all graduates. Graduates had the opportunity to review and update their mailing address when completing the graduation application. If that address has changed (or if you cannot recall which address was listed) please contact firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible to update or verify your address.
Information for Guests
Guest Parking: Visitors may utilize parking within any dark green or purple lot on campus. Please reference the Campus Parking Map for lot locations and designations. There is a parking map below that displays parking options nearest to Peden Stadium.
Disability Parking & Disability Drop Off: Disability parking will be available at Peden Stadium Lot 132. The Peden Stadium parking lot will also accommodate disability drop off for loading/unloading needs.
Tickets and Seating
Tickets: All guests must present a mobile ticket upon entry to the stadium, except for children two and under. Children two and under are permitted without a ticket but must sit on the lap of a ticket holder. Seating is general admission. Family/friends who are unable to attend the ceremony in-person are encouraged to watch the livestream of the ceremony.
All graduates have been emailed detailed instructions to obtain tickets. We strongly encourage one guest from each party to redeem all four tickets, NOT the graduate. However, if you have guests from different households using the tickets, the student should redeem the tickets and transfer each ticket to separate parents/guests. ALL tickets will be in a mobile format and will only be validated on a mobile device. Mobile tickets printed on paper will NOT be accepted as valid tickets.
Re-entry Prohibited: No re-entry will be permitted if guests exit Peden Stadium. Event capacity will be closely controlled to remain in compliance with state, CDC and Ohio University COVID-19 guidelines.
Seating: Please see the stadium map above for specified seating sections. Seats where guests may sit will be clearly marked in groups of four. For the safety of our guests, please sit in a designated seat and do not move toward or join another group.
Seating and Accommodations
Accessibility Seating: There are designated seating sections for guests who have limited mobility and for guests who are wheelchair bound (see accessible seating on Peden Stadium map). We ask that only one additional guest sit in this section in order to maximize our accessibility seating options.
Deaf and Hard of Hearing: A sign language interpreter will provide interpreting services at the ceremony. There is a designated ASL seating section for the best view of the interpreter (view Peden Stadium map). The interpreter will also be shown on the livestream link for guests watching the ceremony remotely.
Lactation: The nearest lactation room is located on the third floor of Baker University Center, 1 Park Place, Athens, OH 45701.
Information for Mentors
Mentors are now welcome to attend the Heritage College’s in-person Commencement ceremony. Mentors will need to check in at Gate 4 and will not be included in their graduate’s four-person guest count. A designated mentor seating section will be provided.
Please note that mentors will not have an active role in this year’s ceremony, but they will be recognized in the Commencement program and pre-ceremony slideshow. Hooding will be conducted by our campus deans. Academic regalia is not necessary for mentors.
A mentor is someone who has encouraged and fostered a student's academic accomplishments. They should best represent the spirit and the art of medical education. A mentor is not required for graduation. The criteria for mentor selection is as follows:
- Each student may choose ONE mentor for Commencement.
- The mentor must have a doctoral degree (degrees include, but are not limited to: D.O., M.D., D.D.S., D.P.M., D.V.M., D.C., D.M.D., O.D., Ph.D., J.D., etc.).
- The mentor must be an established member of the professional community who has practiced/worked in their field for a minimum of one year. Peers and fellow classmates cannot serve as mentors.
Graduates who wish to participate virtually can watch the livestream ceremony. Graduates who are viewing the livestream ceremony remotely will have their name called after all in-person graduate names are called. The livestream will be watch only. Graduates will not be on the screen from home as their name is called. Graduates are encouraged to share this website with anyone who wishes to watch the livestream ceremony.
Please note: The video stream accessible at the link below will not display the live event until the ceremony begins.
Virtual copy of the 2021 Commencement program coming soon!
If you couldn't attend previous ceremonies or wish to view them again, the links below will take you to archived videos of the event.