Search This Site

Finals Weekend

Important Notice

The University will make an announcement about plans for Final Exercises for the Classes of 2020 and 2021 by March 15, 2021.The information on this page pertains to a non-pandemic year. Significant updates will be made as soon as the University's plans for Finals Weekend 2021 have been finalized. Information regarding the postponed Final Exercises for the Class of 2020 is available here. Information regarding UVA's response to COVID-19 is available here.


Valedictory Exercises 

Friday, May 21:  Valedictory Exercises will be held in the John Paul Jones Arena starting at 3:00 p.m. The doors to the arena will open at 1:30 p.m. The ceremony is open to the public, and tickets are not required to attend. Seating will be first-come, first-served.

Class Party

Friday, May 21: Class Party will be held from 9:00 p.m. - 12 a.m. (Location TBD). Given the continued uncertainty about COVID-19, the number of tickets each undergraduate member of the Class of 2021 will receive for the Class Party will be determined at a later date.

Tickets will be distributed at the University Bookstore on Wednesday, May 19 - Friday, May 21 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Tickets must be picked up in-person by the graduating student with a valid photo I.D.

Final Exercises

Saturday, May 22: College and Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
Sunday, May 23: All Other Schools

To access the Lawn for either ceremony, tickets will be required for all guests. Given the continued uncertainty about COVID-19, the number of tickets that each graduate will receive will be determined at a later date and will follow University and State guidelines. All graduating students will be notified via email when a decision has been made. 

The graduate will not need a ticket, but must be wearing a cap and gown in order to gain access to the Lawn or John Paul Jones Arena (in the event of severe weather).

Graduates will not receive guest tickets for both Final Exercises ceremonies on Saturday and Sunday. They will only receive tickets for the day in which his/her school is invited to participate. For example, graduates in the College of Arts & Sciences will only receive guest tickets for Saturday's ceremony; whereas, students in the School of Engineering & Applied Science will only receive guest tickets for Sunday's ceremony.

Graduates (with a valid photo ID) can pick up their guest tickets from the UVA Bookstore during the times listed below. The graduating student is the only person permitted to pick up the tickets. 

  • Wednesday, May 19 - Friday, May 21:  9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Saturday, May 22:  7 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, May 23:  7 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.

Candidates for M.D., M.B.A., and J.D. degrees will receive their guest tickets at cap and gown pick-up in their respective schools.

For Final Exercises, graduates and faculty will be seated on the Lawn in front of Old Cabell Hall.  Guest seating will be behind the student seating area and on the next four levels of the Lawn on either side of the processional route.

On the morning of each Final Exercises ceremony, ushers will begin collecting tickets and seating guests starting at 7:30 a.m. All seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. At 9:30 a.m. the center aisle of the Lawn will close in preparation for the procession, which is why we strongly encourage guests to be in their seats by 9:15 a.m. Once the center aisle closes, foot traffic from one side of the Lawn to the other will be prohibited. If guests need to leave the Lawn temporarily before or during Final Exercises, they must obtain a pass from an usher for re-entry.

Please note: Guests without a Final Exercises seating ticket can watch a live stream of the ceremony in one of our climate-controlled, remote (indoor) viewing locations across Grounds. Tickets are not required for these venues. In addition, both Final Exercises ceremonies will be streamed live on the Finals Weekend live webcast page.

Last Updated: June 17, 2020