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Ceremony Information For Students

Graduation convocation ceremonies are optional celebrations and are a chance to get together with your fellow students, family, friends, and faculty to celebrate your accomplishments. The ceremonies are held at the Port Theatre in downtown Nanaimo, BC. The University often presents Honorary Doctorates and Awards and recognizes the achievements of VIU community members as well as those of our graduates.

Please note that unless otherwise stated, all deadlines apply to students attending the June 2017 ceremonies. Students attending the February 2018 ceremonies will receive information about ordering tickets and renting regalia in October 2017.

Students who attended the January 2017 convocation ceremonies can view and order the photo taken onstage with the President and the Chancellor at with the password VIU21. These photos will be available until July 31, 2017.

June 2017 Graduation Convocation Ceremonies

For ceremony details, please visit

Emails regarding graduation and the convocation ceremonies were sent on the following dates:

What to Do To If You're Planning to Attend a Convocation Ceremony:

1. Sign up!

You can sign up for a convocation ceremony when you submit your application to graduate. Please make sure you sign up by the following deadlines:

June 2017 ceremonies

    You must submit your application no later than Monday, February 20, 2017, and have completed the requirements of your program by July 7, 2017.

January 2018 ceremonies

    You must submit your application no later than Monday, October 9, 2017 and have completed the requirements of your program by February 28, 2018.

Students who miss the deadline to sign up for their ceremony of choice will be added to the ceremony only if space permits. Please contact for more information.

Please note: to be eligible to attend the convocation ceremony, students must meet one of the following conditions:

  1. Have completed all requirements of their program at least one month prior to the ceremony, and have had their graduation officially conferred; OR
  2. Be completing all requirements of their program within one month of the ceremony and have the recommendation of their Degree Advisor or Program Chair/Coordinator. Students participating in the ceremony as a Participant will receive their official parchment after the ceremony, once their graduation is officially conferred.

After the deadline to sign up for the ceremony has passed, you will receive information about ordering tickets and renting regalia by email from

2. Add the Convocation email to your contact list

Add to your contact list to make sure that these emails end up in your inbox and not your junk mail folder.

3. Order Tickets

If you chose to attend a convocation ceremony, you may order tickets for your guests. Due to seating constraints at the Port Theatre, tickets are limited.

Click here for information on ordering your tickets.

Anyone who is not able to attend the convocation ceremony may watch it live on our webfeed at

4. Order Regalia

Students attending the convocation ceremonies must wear the proper regalia. Regalia consists of a black gown and a black cap with tassel. Degree students also wear a hood which is draped over the shoulders of the gown and hangs down the back. The hood usually has to be pinned into place. The colour of your hood is determined by the degree program from which you are graduating (pdf document examples of hood colours).

Click here for information on ordering your regalia.

Please note that students from the Faculty of Trades and Applied Technology attending the convocation ceremony in June are not required to wear regalia.

Other Information You May Need to Know:

1. Grad Photos

We offer all graduates the opportunity to sign up for graduation photography sessions. Click here for information on signing up for grad photos.

2. Valedictorian

A valedictorian gives a farewell and congratulatory speech addressed to the students, their guests, and the institution. There will be one valedictorian selected per ceremony who will be given five minutes to address their peers.  The valedictorians are selected by the students in the graduating class, based on video auditions that will be posted online for viewing.

Information on applying to be the valedictorian of your graduating class.

3. Notice of Live Webcast / Event Photography

Please note that VIU convocation ceremonies are webcast internationally. As well, VIU staff photographers take pictures throughout the ceremony for use in various forms of media including print or multimedia materials.