Friday, May 20, 2016 at 10:30 a.m.
Caroline H. Hume Concert Hall

Doors open at 9:30 a.m.
Ticket information below

The San Francisco Conservatory of Music will grant Garrick Ohlsson, long regarded as one of the world's leading exponents of the music of Frédéric Chopin, the honorary degree of Doctor of Music at this year's commencement ceremony

The student speakers at the Commencement ceremony will be selected later this semester. The student award winners will be announced at the Commencement ceremony after selection by the faculty, Provost, and President.

Following the approximately ninety-minute ceremony, there will be a reception in the Atrium for graduates and their guests.

Mandatory Meetings for Graduating Students

The Office of Student Affairs and the Office of the Registrar will hold meetings for all May 2016 graduates. Students expecting to graduate in May must attend one of the following sessions:

  • Wednesday, March 16 from Noon-12:30pm in Room 512
  • Wednesday, March 16 from 3-3:30pm in Room 207
  • Thursday, March 17 from 2:30-3pm in Room 507

Graduating students will receive an email with instructions on registering for one of the meetings. Please contact the Office of the Registrar if you did not receive this email, or if there are changes to your graduation plan.

Mandatory Rehearsal for Graduating Students

The Office of Student Affairs and the Office of the Registrar will hold a required graduation rehearsal at 11am on Thursday, May 19, 2016. Students expecting to graduate in May must attend and should arrive by 10:45am to the Conservatory Recital Hall. After rehearsal, a small reception will be held for the graduating students, alumni, staff, and faculty.

Forms and Documents

This list of documents to be completed in order to graduate.

Ceremony Tickets

Tickets to the Commencement ceremony will be available at the Student Service Center beginning Wednesday, May 11. Each student may invite up to two guests to sit in the Concert Hall for the ceremony. The graduating student will not need a ticket; however, each guest must have a ticket to be admitted. Students must personally pick up their tickets.

The Conservatory will have overflow seating for guests who are over the two ticket maximum. Overflow seating will be in the Osher Salon, where a live-feed of the ceremony will be streamed; tickets are not needed for overflow seating. Guests of graduates in overflow seating may join the reception in the Atrium following the ceremony.

Any questions should be directed to Zach Van Pelt, Student Services Manager, at

Participation in Commencement

Students that have met all the requirements within their degree program, as confirmed by the Office of the Registrar, are eligible to participate in Commencement. Students that completed all degree requirements and graduated after fall semester ("December graduates") are eligible to walk in the May Commencement ceremony. All student participants in Commencement are required to utilize caps, gowns, and hoods purchased from Herff-Jones in the same year as the Commencement ceremony.

Caps and Gowns

Graduates and faculty will take part in a processional and recessional dressed in academic regalia. The Conservatory supplements the cost of caps, gowns and hoods for Commencement. Graduating students will receive an email in March with information on how to purchase their caps, gowns, and hoods online from Herff-Jones. The order must be placed online no later than Sunday, April 10, 2016. All caps, gowns, and hoods will be shipped directly to the Conservatory and distributed by the Office of Student Affairs in order to save graduating students the cost of shipping.

Announcements and Diploma Frames

Herff-Jones has a number of announcements, thank you cards, and diploma frames available for students and their families to purchase.

Driving Directions and Parking

Please visit the Admissions webpage for driving directions and parking.

Airport and Hotel Information

Please visit the Admissions webpage for airport and hotel information.