The College of Charleston Commencement Participation Survey opened on Friday, March 5, 2021, to allow members of the Class of 2020/2021 to select their participation in commencement exercises this spring. The participation survey closes Friday, March 26, 12 p.m.

Commencement ceremonies are scheduled for May 6-8, with a make-up date of May 9 for any weather impacted ceremonies.

Ceremony Dates and Locations

This year, for the first time in history, candidates will have choices in the upcoming spring 2021 commencement ceremonies. Due to COVID-19 protocols, a traditional ceremony in Cistern Yard without an in-person audience will be available to candidates on Friday, May 7, and Saturday, May 8. Candidates who wish to have a small number of guests in person may choose to participate in a ceremony at the College’s Patriots Point Soccer Stadium on Thursday, May 6.

Ceremonies will be held in both locations (and will be live-streamed from both locations), and you will be able to register for the option of your choice. You may also elect not to participate or to participate virtually and have your name read at the Patriots Point ceremony.

The exact time for each ceremony and when each school participates will be released on Wednesday, March 31.

Survey Questions 

Graduates may choose one of the following options via the Commencement Participation Survey:

1. I do not wish to participate.
2. I wish to participate virtually. I understand that my name will be read at the ceremony at Patriots Point Soccer Stadium and that I will have the opportunity to provide a photo for a slide to be incorporated into the final edit of the commencement video, to appear with my name, earned honor(s), earned degree(s) and school(s).
3. I wish to participate in Cistern Yard. I understand I will not have in-person guests in Cistern Yard but will have a limited number of ticketed guests in satellite locations.
4. I wish to participate in the ceremony at Patriots Point Soccer Stadium. I understand I will be allowed a limited number of in-person guests.

Who Can Participate

All candidates who graduated in Spring/Summer 2020, Fall 2020, and all candidates eligible to graduate in Spring/Summer 2021 may participate in these Spring 2021 ceremonies, INCLUDING those who participated in the October 2020 ceremonies in Cistern Yard.

How to Participate

Eligible candidates from Fall 2020 and Spring/Summer 2021 will automatically receive a Qualtrics Spring 2021 Commencement Participation Selection survey to indicate their participation choice. The survey must be completed by Friday, March 26, at 12 p.m. in order for graduates to participate. If you miss this deadline, you cannot participate.

Candidates cannot change their decision once the survey closes, so please consult with your friends, family or guests who may need to travel or plan to attend before making your final selection. (While the survey is still open, if you need to change your selection, email Include your first and last name and your CWID. Remember, no changes are possible once the survey closes at 12 p.m. EST on Friday, March 26.)

Virtual Viewing

The ceremonies will be livestreamed, and approximately three weeks later, ceremony videos will be available on the commencement website.

For the Cistern Yard ceremonies, Rivers Green, Stern Garden and the School of Sciences and Mathematics Courtyard Building will be set up as live-streaming satellite locations. Guests with tickets will be accommodated at the satellite locations on a first-come/first-served basis. Once the capacity of a venue is reached, guests will be directed to another site. Some chairs will be available, and guests are welcome to bring a blanket (no folding chairs) for the ground. There will be limited indoor seating for those who need relief from the heat.

Rest assured that no matter which ceremony you attend, your health and well-being and that of your guests, remain our number-one priority.

Additional details are located on the Commencement website.