Social Welfare Commencement

Social Welfare Commencement Ceremony: Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 7:00 p.m.!

Congratulations Class of 2020!

All Social Welfare students graduating in the 2019-20 academic year (includes Fall 2019, Spring 2020, and Summer 2020) are eligible to participate in our Spring 2020 Commencement Ceremony:

  • Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 7:00 p.m.
  • Zellerbach Hall on the UC Berkeley Campus
  • Graduates should arrive Lower Sproul Plaza by 6:30 p.m.Graduation day instructions for graduates will be posted here in early January.​

Register for Commencement

All students must register for Commencement in order to participate in the graduation ceremony. Registration details and instructions will be posted here in December 2019.

Commencement Tickets

Ticketing for 2020 Commencement will be handled directly by Cal Performances. Our Commencement Ceremony is a private, ticketed event and all attendees must have a ticket to be admitted to Zellerbach Hall, including babies and small children. This is a Cal Performances policy and there are no exceptions.

No one will be admitted into the Auditorium without a ticket, except graduates in cap and gown. Graduates dressed in cap and gown do not need a ticket for themselves.

Each graduate who registers for Commencement by the priority deadline will automatically receive two (2) free tickets for guests. Addtional tickets will be available for purchase from Cal Performances. Ticketing information will be posted here in early spring 2020.

Guests Walking with You

Graduating students may bring up to two (2) family members or special guests up onto the stage to walk with them in the commencement ceremony. If you wish to have someone (family member, partner, child, or other loved one, etc.) join you in the walk across the stage, we ask that you please follow these important guidelines so the process can work smoothly:

  • You MUST indicate in your Commencement RSVP if you will have guests walking with you. You may ONLY have up to two (2) guests walk with you, and they must have a ticket in order to be admitted to the auditorium.
  • Guests walking with you will also have to sit with you in the auditorium for the entire duration of the ceremony.
  • They will also march in with you during the procession. Someone will collect their tickets at the door as you all process into the lobby.

Official Cal Regalia and Graduation Supplies

Graduates may purchase caps and gowns, along with other graduation gear, at the ASUC Student Store in MLK Union, and/or FallRush Berkeley located at 2480 Bancroft Way. You can also place your regalia order directly with the Cal Student Store.

Honor Cords for Undergraduates

The Department will provide Honor Cords to eligible undergraduate Social Welfare majors. Cords will be distributed at our annual Haviland Scholars Day event on Friday, May 8, 2020.

Graduation Photography

GradImages is the official campus photographer for commencement. Approximately 24 hours after the ceremony you will receive information from them on how to access your proofs and order your commencement photos. GradImages sends both email notifications and mails paper proofs to the address they have on file for you. You may also preregister your contact information with GradImages to receive your proofs, and receive a discount on any orders.

GradImages Customer Service

Guest and Visitor Information

ADA Accessibility for Guests

Please be sure to communicate any special accommodation needs you or your guests may have when you RSVP for Commencement.

We will provide the Zellerbach house staff with a list of participants and guests requiring special assistance in advance. We strongly encourage you to inform guests who use a wheelchair or have other special seating/accommodation needs to arrive 15 minutes prior to the doors opening to the general audience. Cal Performances ushers will greet guests requiring ADA assistance at about 6:15 p.m., and will assist your guests with seating in the auditorium.

Parking and Transportation

Zellerbach Auditorium Directions & Parking

Reserved parking is not available for commencement and we encourage you take public transportation. If you choose to drive, please refer to the campus map for directions.

During commencements at Berkeley, Student "S" Permit areas will be open to the public at the hourly rate. Purchase parking from the "Pay by Space" dispensing machine. Parking and Transportation will also sell parking for Zellerbach Auditorium at the following locations:

  • Dana/Durant Lot ($10)
  • RSF Garage ($10)
  • Lower Sproul Garage ($15)

The City of Berkeley Telegraph Channing Garage (formerly the Sather Gate Garage), located two blocks from the UC Berkeley Campus, is also available.

Coming to Berkeley

For information about where to stay, dine, and sight-see in the City of Berkeley, please see Visit Berkeley.

Degrees and Diplomas

Students will not receive their diploma on the day of the ceremony. Diplomas will be mailed by the Office of the Registrar approximately 3.5 months after the ceremony. For more information please see Transcripts and Diplomas.

Posting of MSW Degrees

MSW degrees are expected to be posted to students' transcripts no earlier than June 15. The degree conferral date is May 16, 2020. For information regarding requirements and the process for LCSW licensure in California, please visit the Board of Behavioral Sciences.