PharmD, MS, PhD Commencement

Graduation Celebration [For Pharm.D., M.S., and Ph.D. graduates only]

On Friday, May 8th 2020 at 5:00 PM, Interim Dean Philip Hritcko will host the School of Pharmacy Awards Banquet in the Lewis B. Rome Commons Ballroom at the South Campus Complex for the Pharm.D., M.S., and Ph.D. graduates. All graduates are invited to attend and awardees will be announced that night. You will  be informed in advance if you have received an award. Due to limited seating capacity, each graduate may bring two [2] guests to this event. A third guest ticket may be purchased for $35.  Checks should be made payable to the UConn School of Pharmacy and received no later than March 31 Attn: Susan Corbin, 69 North Eagleville Rd, Storrs CT 06269-3092.   Attire for this event is semi-formal. Our keynote address will be given by the Teacher of the Year. Seating for this event is assigned and limited. It is imperative that you inform us of all guests needing a special accommodation no later than the March 22 RSVP deadline. The reception for this event runs from 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM and will include complimentary non-alcoholic drinks. A cash bar will be available. Dinner will begin promptly at 6:00 PM. Please arrive no later than 5:45 PM as our registration desk will close at that time.

Upon arrival at the Lewis B. Rome Commons Ballroom, please check-in at the registration table for seating assignments. Tables in the ballroom will be numbered (holder and number in the center of the table), and place cards will be on each table. Volunteers at the reception table will have table assignments and visual charts to show you exactly where you and your family are to be seated. Please adhere to this arrangement. Coat racks for guests are located on the left side of the foyer near the registration tables. Restrooms are located on the right side of the foyer.


On the following day, May 9, 2020 Doctor of Pharmacy students will commence at 9:00 AM promptly at the Lewis B. Rome Commons Ballroom at the South Campus Complex. Seating for this event will be assigned based on the room configuration. For Pharm.D. students, this is your official University of Connecticut GRADUATION CEREMONY. You will be hooded and receive a diploma cover at this event. You will NOT be participating in the graduate commencement ceremony at Gampel Pavilion that afternoon. M.S. and Ph.D. graduates will be recognized at this School of Pharmacy ceremony, but hooding of Ph.D. students and conferring of degrees will take place in a separate ceremony. Additional information [including a participation form, instructions for ordering regalia, tickets to Gampel, etc.] about graduate commencement for masters and doctoral students may be found at:


Over 900 people will be attending this event! In order to accommodate everyone, you must follow these instructions exactly. Each graduate will be allowed to bring six [6] guests, not including the graduate. This event is a combination of assigned and ushered seating. Students RSVP using the link available in the UConn Pharmacy Flash. NOTE:  [There is a provision for adding the names of additional guests on the electronic RSVP form. See the procedure for requesting additional guests below.] Please fill out your RSVP form completely beginning February 15 and no later than March 22. This is the deadline for receipt of the RSVP. Access to the form will close on March 22 at 11:59 PM. This allows us enough time to provide additional seating for those making requests. All non-reserved seats, including those for students, will be released at this time – NO EXCEPTIONS. In the past, the room was at maximum capacity and non-claimed seats WILL be released. In addition to meeting the RSVP deadline, Doctor of Pharmacy students must have completed RxOutcome by the March 10 deadline date. If you have not been cleared by Dr. Wheeler by this date, your seats for the Awards Banquet and Commencement Ceremony will not be held – NO EXCEPTIONS. You will not be notified by Dr. Wheeler that you are cleared, but you will be notified if you are not cleared.

It is imperative that you inform us of all guests needing a special accommodation no later than the  RSVP deadline. Special accommodations may include: wheelchairs, persons with limited mobility, hearing impairment, etc.  Children and infants count as a person and should be noted on your RSVP form – even if they will be held. According to the fire marshal, each person counts regardless of age. Due to the space restrictions in the room, it is NOT possible to accommodate strollers, car seats, etc. inside the Lewis B. Rome Commons Ballroom. Please leave strollers in your vehicle and instruct your guests that we cannot accommodate strollers. We also ask you to advise guests bringing small children to please step out of the room should the children become restless so that all guests may enjoy the ceremony.


If space is available for additional guests and you wish to bring more than the allotted six [6] people to the ceremony, you must add them to the RSVP form:

  • Questions regarding the ceremony should be directed to Susan Corbin or 860-486-2216.
  •  Emails to change or add guests can be sent to with the subject line: Request for Change or Additional Guests at Pharm.D. Commencement.

You will receive an e-mail in April, providing the names of all guests that we are able to accommodate.


All students, including M.S. and Ph.D., should wear their caps and gowns to the event! We suggest business attire under the cap and gown. Regalia is required for participation in the graduation ceremony. Please order your regalia as soon as possible. As indicated above, for instructions on regalia students should refer to UConn Commencement. Rho Chi, Phi Lambda Sigma, and track students should confirm that their adviser has ordered the appropriate cords. Advisers will provide the cords to the students. Students who received medals for University of Connecticut honors – even B.S. honors – should wear their medals with their regalia.


The Commencement Procession will begin promptly at 9:00 AM. Guests not seated by 8:55 AM will be seated after the procession and introduction of the class is complete at the discretion of the event staff so as not to interrupt the proceedings. Graduates should arrive no later than 8:30 AM. Please do not arrive prior to 8:00 AM as access to the ballroom will not be available prior to that time. Tickets for seating will be distributed at the event registration desk. All seats are assigned using the procedures outlined above and may be subject to group size.

Upon arrival at the Lewis B. Rome Commons Ballroom, students should be in their regalia and student check in at the registration table. Family members and guests should proceed to guest registration – ask for the student’s name. Guests should take their tickets to the ballroom doors where ushers will escort them to their seats. Students will receive an address information/survey card that should be filled out and returned to the reception table. Students will also receive a form agreeing to release their NAPLEX scores. It is important for the school to have this information to accurately assess the quality of the curriculum and program.

All graduates will then line up in alphabetical order for the procession. M.S. and Ph.D. students will be grouped separately from the Pharm.D. students. Please help to expedite this process by positioning yourself near to where you fall in the alphabet. If your last name begins with J, for example, don’t stand in the front of the line – head for the middle. M.S. and Ph.D. students should group near the rear of the line. Please listen quietly and attentively to event staff in order to hear instructions and to line up properly. Your hoods will be carried on your left arm and you will be hooded after receiving your diploma. Tassels should be worn on the left side since your B.S. degree has already been conferred. Faculty marshals will lead the procession and the graduates will process to their seating for the ceremony. Seats will have your name on them. Please sit in your assigned seat facing the audience. The ceremony will include speakers and the recognition of special guests. Awards will be presented at the Graduation Celebration on Friday evening. They will not be part of the graduation ceremony. Each Ph.D. candidate will be recognized on stage with their major adviser or their departmental designee. Ph.D. candidates will be hooded as part of their commencement ceremony at Jorgensen on Sunday. Each M.S. candidate will be recognized on stage and hooded by their major adviser or their departmental designee. M.S. students will receive their diploma cases at the Graduate School commencement in Gampel Pavilion. Each Pharm. D. candidate will be individually hooded and receive a representative diploma at this event. Actual diplomas will be mailed to graduates after the ceremony.


May 8th is the final day of exams and a move out day for many students. In past years, there have also been major athletic tournaments on campus that weekend. Campus will be extremely crowded and parking at a premium. Parking near the Lewis B. Rome Commons Ballroom is limited. The South Garage is an alternative. There may be additional parking behind the South Campus dormitories. It is strongly recommended that you and your guests consult a parking map [available at] to prepare a plan and backup plans for parking on that day. Please consider dropping your guests at the ballroom and then parking the car, especially in the case of those unable to walk from the parking areas to the event. For those individuals requiring handicapped parking or the assistance of the handicapped van, please refer to the appropriate website and make arrangements well in advance.


There will be a professional photographer hired by the School of Pharmacy taking pictures of the ceremony and he will take a group shot following the ceremony. He will also be taking pictures of each graduate receiving their diploma. [Ph.D. and M.S. students will have a photo with the dean and their advisor.] There will be ample opportunity for family members to take photographs, but please allow our photographer[s] to take the shots first. In addition, we request that your family members remain seated until just before your name is called so that everyone is able to see their student graduate. In the past, the dean has been extremely supportive of these family photos. Please ask your family to follow the rules so that we may continue the practice. The ceremony will be live streamed and recorded. Immediately following the Doctor of Pharmacy commencement ceremony, graduates will process to the location for the group photo. This location will be announced at commencement as the location is weather dependent.


Members of the University of Connecticut Police Department and Fire Department will be on hand during our event. In case of emergency, please listen carefully for instructions from these responders. In case of a medical emergency, please contact a member of the event staff [identified with badges] or a uniformed officer so that we may render assistance. Basic first aid [bandages, etc.] will be available at the reception table. We are unable to provide pain relievers at that location.


We look forward to celebrating this wonderful occasion with you and your families. Any questions [except those regarding additional guests – please follow the procedure above] may be addressed to the Office of Student Affairs at with the subject line: Questions Regarding Pharm.D. Commencement or via telephone at 860-486-2216.


Parents and guests should NOT submit individual RSVP forms.  Students should collect information for all guests and use the electronic form provided in the UConn Pharmacy Flash.