The Commencement Procession, one of Brown's greatest and oldest traditions, brings together the entire Brown community in a festive and joyous celebration. The procession steps off through Faunce Arch promptly at 9:45 AM and is led by the chief marshal, a member of the 50th reunion class. All graduating students march through the Van Wickle Gates, which swing open twice a year: inward to admit incoming students during Convocation and outward to discharge the new graduates during Commencement.
For Guests & Family Members
All guests and family members are strongly encouraged to view the live simulcast of the procession from the seating available on the Main Green. The procession is made up of approximately 6,000 participants that line the route, making photography very difficult. In addition, street closures and barricades around the procession route will make lines of sight challenging for guests. Families are welcome to return to the Van Wickle Gates following the ceremonies to take photographs, which will remain open until 6:00 PM on Monday, May 29th.
The Procession Line-Up
Alumni are asked to assemble at their assigned class locations by 9:40 AM. The most recent alumni will line up on George Street and the older alumni classes will line up on the Main Green. Medical School Alumni will line up on Waterman near Faunce Arch.
Faculty who wish to partake in the procession and view the University Ceremony are asked to report to Brown Street, near Fones Alley no later than 9:30 AM on Sunday, May 28th. Please approach the line-up from Angell St. Faculty will line up behind the Senior Administration. Faculty will process through the Van Wickle Gates, down College and Benefit Streets, and return to reserved seating on the Main Green via Waterman Street to view the College & University Ceremony.
Faculty who wish to process with the Graduate School and attend the Doctoral or Master's Ceremonies are asked to report to Waterman St. in front of J. Walter Wilson no later than 9:30 AM.
Faculty who wish to process with the Medical School and attend the Medical School Ceremony are asked to report to the Faunce Arch on Waterman St. no later than 9:15 AM.
For Graduate Students
The Graduate School Procession will form at 9:00 AM on Waterman Street, facing west, on the south side of Waterman Street. See illustration above. Academic regalia is required to participate in the Procession and the Graduate School Ceremonies. Graduate students will march through the Van Wickle Gates and take an immediate right onto Prospect Street. They will take another immediate right onto Waterman Street and head toward Pembroke Field (master's students) or Simmons Quadrangle (doctoral students) for their ceremonies.
For Medical Students
Medical School graduates will line up at 9:15 AM in front of Faunce Arch on Waterman Street, facing west, on the north side of Waterman Street. See illustration above. The Medical School division will step off at approximately 9:45 AM. The Medical School Procession marches through the Van Wickle Gates, down to the First Unitarian Church, where the Medical School Ceremony and awarding of degrees take place. Alumni are welcome to march and attend the ceremony.
For Undergraduate Students
Undergraduate students are asked to report to Waterman Street no later than 9:45 AM. Line up begins at Faunce Arch, facing east, on the south side of Waterman Street. See illustration above. All Seniors should arrive to Waterman in academic regalia. Undergraduate students will process through the Van Wickle Gates, down College and Benefit Street to the grounds of First Baptist Meeting House for the College Ceremony (note: only graduates are permitted at the church, guests are asked to view the ceremony from the Main Green). Undergraduate students will then partake in a return procession from the Church to the Main Green prior to the University Ceremony.