Academic Affairs


Congratulations on nearing your graduation!


The Spring Commencement Ceremony
will be held outdoors on May 7, 2016 at 3:00 p.m. in the Spratt Memorial Stadium.

The ceremony will last approximately two hours.

Graduates should report to the Griffon Indoor Sports Complex at 1:30 p.m.

View Spring 2016 Commencement Ceremony here.

Commencement Schedule

On May 7, 2016, degrees will be conferred on all undergraduate students who have completed graduation requirements in the spring and summer semesters and graduate students who have completed graduation requirements in the spring semester of 2016 during Missouri Western State University’s commencement ceremony.

  • 1:30 p.m. –  Gates open to Spratt Stadium
  • 1:30 p.m. –  Graduates report to the Griffon Indoor Sports Complex (GISC) through the southeast door.  (See GISC map.)
  • Graduates will check-in with their school/college. (See GISC map.)
  • Students may have their photo taken in their cap and gown inside the GISC.
  • 2:45 p.m. – Graduates and Faculty begin their march through a west exit of the GISC and proceed to Spratt Stadium(Reminder: no spiked heel shoes will be allowed on the Spratt Stadium field.) 
  • 2:50 p.m. – All guests should be seated
  • 3:00 p.m. –  Processional inside Spratt Stadium begins

The Alumni Reception and yearbook distribution begins immediately following the ceremony in each home concession stand and the concourse area.  All are welcome to the Alumni Reception.

Call your records coordinator listed below to make changes to your address or make your own changes online in your secure profile area.

If you have questions regarding graduation eligibility, contact your graduate records coordinator:

❖ Jesse White, or 816.271.4230, Currently enrolled undergraduate students with last name beginning with A-G; N-Q; U-Z
❖ Judy Chambers, or 816.271.4589, Currently enrolled undergraduate students with last name beginning with H-M; R-T, and all graduate level students



Graduates may not wear spiked heeled shoes on the field.  Only wedges or flat shoes will be allowed. Also, do not bring personal items with you to the lineup area (Griffon Indoor Sports Complex).  No one will be available to care for your possessions.

The march to the field will take approximately 15 minutes. Please make sure you wear comfortable shoes. Contact our office, Academic Affairs, 816-271-4364, if you are unable to walk the march to the field.

Students may be dropped off near the east parking lot (Lot I); however, the parking in this lot is reserved for special guests and for handicap parking only.

Shuttle buses will circle Downs Drive picking up guests and graduates at designated areas.  Please look for the “Shuttle Bus Pick-Up” signs.  You can see these locations near several parking lots around campus.

Every effort will be made to hold the ceremony outdoors as planned, rain or shine. For your comfort, you are encouraged to dress for the weather. Umbrellas may be used, but no large, golf size umbrellas, please, in consideration of others so the view of the graduates is not obstructed.

If the weather is hot and sunny, you are encouraged to bring bottled water to keep hydrated during the ceremony.  Water will also be for sale at our concession stands. A bottle of water will be provided to graduates. No coolers will be allowed. Don’t forget your sunscreen!

The ceremony will not be live-streamed, but will be available for viewing on our website shortly after Commencement concludes.

If we proceed with the normal ceremony and conditions deteriorate, we may choose to abbreviate the ceremony and stop calling graduates across the stage so that we can conclude quickly and everyone can move to safety.


If, at any point, the immediate forecast calls for dangerous conditions, we will cancel the ceremony and evacuate Spratt Stadium.

In the event of an evacuation, guests will be directed to the nearest exit.

Since you will not be sitting with your graduate, please make plans in advance to meet up with your graduate in a safe location that is away from Spratt Stadium.

If we evacuate, the remainder of the ceremony and reception will be cancelled.  We will not reconvene, so if it is safe for you to do so, you can exit campus.


Undergraduates do not order their own cap and gown. These are pre-ordered for you and picked up in the Barnes and Noble Bookstore beginning April 6 to May 6, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Candidates for certificates and degrees must wear robes and caps without added adornment such as markings on mortar boards, beads or flowers.


Degree candidates who will graduate with overall university honors wear stoles, which will be distributed when they check-in on May 7. Honor graduates are identified in the commencement program. Students belonging to MWSU recognized honor societies may wear their approved cords.   More information can be found here.


Tickets are not required for admission at Spratt Stadium.  Seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis, therefore guests are encouraged to arrive early. However, please see the Inclement Weather Plan.


Noisemakers, balloons, and coolers will be prohibited at the Commencement ceremony. Smoking and the use of tobacco products and alcohol are also prohibited. Please see our Alcohol Policy and Tobacco Use Policy.


In the case of inclement weather during the time of the outdoor commencement, a back-up plan has been made to have the commencement in the Looney Complex.  Please read the Inclement Weather Plan carefully for instructions of what to do if the commencement ceremony cannot be held outdoors.


All graduates, along with their families and friends, are invited to attend a reception hosted by the MWSU Alumni Association following the ceremony.  The reception will be held in the concourse area of the Spratt Stadium.  In the case of inclement weather, there will be no reception.


If any physical accommodations for graduates are necessary, contact Academic Affairs (816) 271-4234.

  Additional Commencement Information

Looking for announcements or class rings?

Regarding graduation announcements, contact the Barnes & Noble Bookstore at (816) 271-4457, or you can view the selection options and place your order on the following web site: . Keep in mind that you do NOT buy your own cap and gown.

A Note from the Photography Company

ATTENTION ALL GRADUATES: GradImages is the official photographer for our Commencement. Proofs will be sent to your home and via email within three to five days after graduation. Pictures can be ordered online, by phone or by mail. Graduation Images can be contacted at 800-261-2576 or via email at Click on the pre-registration tab and enter the school name (Missouri Western State University) then enter your email information.

Registering your graduate with GradImages provides them with the information they need to deliver your graduation proofs to you in a timely manner. Giving them an accurate mailing address and email address will allow them to get your proofs to you on the first try. You may also provide them with email addresses of up to six friends and family members to allow them to celebrate in the accomplishment.


Caps and gowns for those receiving Masters degrees will be special ordered (sizes should have been indicated on your application for graduation).  You will be notified through your Missouri Western email account when the order has arrived.  The caps and gowns will be picked up in the Graduate School office, Popplewell Hall, Room 121, between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.  Hoods will be maintained by the Graduate Office until the day of the ceremony.


Graduates will receive a diploma cover on the day of the ceremony with a congratulatory note from President Robert Vartabedian. The Registrar’s Office will mail your diploma approximately 6 weeks after your graduation term to the address listed on your graduation application. Please be sure your mailing address is updated.

Please note that official transcripts with graduation information and the MWSU diploma will not be released if any financial obligation exists with the University.


Students observe many traditions throughout their time spent at Missouri Western, but none as important as those experienced at Commencement.  Click here to see all the traditions that will be observed on the graduate’s special day.


Congratulations and welcome to the Missouri Western Alumni Association! As a graduate of Missouri Western, you join an organization of more than 28,000 people from all 50 states. As a member of the Alumni Association, you will receive Missouri Western magazine twice a year, access to the Griffon Alumni Online Community, and opportunities to gather and connect with fellow alumni. For more information on what the Alumni Association has to offer you as a graduate, go to


Looking for lodging near Missouri Western State University?  Click here.


For questions and additional information, please call 816-271-4364 or email


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