Guest Information

*No Balloons in the Gym*

WWU has decided balloons will not be allowed in the gymnasium of Carver Academic Building. In the past, balloons have gotten loose and because the building is due to be released back to contractors after commencement, no balloons will be allowed. Please leave balloons in the car and feel free to bring other gifts for graduates. There will be flower and lei sales on site.

Parking & Directions

Directions and maps can be found here.

Bellingham Area Guide & Lodging

Please visit WWU's Admisisons website or the Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism website for information about lodging in the Bellingham area.

Food and On-Campus Services

The Viking Union Cafe:
Friday | 7:30 am - 5:00 pm
Saturday | 7:30 am - 12:00 pm

The Miller Market and Tony's Coffee:
Friday | 7:30 am - 5:00 pm
Saturday | 8:00 - 4:00 pm

The Atrium Market and Starbucks:
Friday | 7:30 am - 5:00 pm
Saturday | 7:30 - 4:00 pm

The Associated Students Bookstore:
Friday | 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Saturday | 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Seating Arrangements

Tickets are required, regardless of age, to view the ceremony in the Carver Academic Building.

All guests should be seated 20 minutes before the posted time of the ceremony. The procession begins 15 minutes prior to the ceremony time.  All guest entrances are closed during this time and will reopen when the procession is complete. 

Fall/Winter quarters: Carver opens at 8:00 am.

Spring quarter:  Carver opens at:

  • Friday Ceremony: 4:00 pm
  • Saturday Ceremony One: 8:00 am
  • Saturday Ceremony Two: 11:15 am
  • Saturday Ceremony Three: 2:15 pm

Summer quarter:  Carver opens at 9:00 am

Guests with wheelchair and mobility limitations have seating available. Designated areas have been reserved for these guests but space is on a first come, first serve basis.

Admission Tickets

Each student will receive a predetermined number of tickets before commencement. These tickets are used for seating in the Carver Academic Building. Students can verify the numbers of tickets given to them in the For Students section.

We do not sell tickets for commencement. We have a set number of seats in our venue and ticket numbers are based on this capacity limitation. If there are extra tickets for a ceremony, we will distribute an additional (1 ticket) per graduate at Graduation Celebration and at the ticket booth, 75 minutes before each ceremony on a first come, first served basis. Please remember comfortable seating is also available in the SMATE building, where commencement may be viewed via a live feed and does not require a ticket.

Additional Viewing

Guests attending the ceremony should remember that each graduate receives a specified amount of tickets to graduation based on our venue/graduate ratio. Because of this, some guests may not be able to obtain tickets. The SMATE building is a great alternative for these guests and does not require tickets. There are four lecture halls with big screens live-streaming the event. This location is air-conditioned, comfortable, easily accessible for guests with mobility limitations, and just steps away from the Carver Academic Building.

Accommodation Requests

Arrangements have been made and you do not need to contact us if your guest:

  • is unable to climb stairs
  • is in a wheelchair
  • needs sign language interpretation

ADA parking will be available for guests with state issued parking passes in lots 17G & 11G.

For guests requiring sign language interpretation, seating is available in Carver. Ushers will assist guests with seating.

If you have questions about accommodations for guests, please contact commencement staff by email. (Washington State TDD Relay Service, 800-833-6388)

Lost and Found

Please check with the University Police (360-650-3555) or with the Viking Union Lost & Found Office (360-650-3120). Please note that the Viking Union Lost & Found is closed during breaks, call at the beginning of the quarter. Most lost valuable items will go directly to the University Police after the ceremony.