Parents, Families, and Guests

Frequently Asked Questions

When and where does the commencement ceremony take place?
For details on ceremony location and time, visit the Commencement page.

Are tickets required for this event?
Yes, tickets are required for all commencement ceremonies. An allotted number of tickets will be distributed to graduating students prior to the commencement ceremony. The allotted number of tickets will be determined by the number of graduates; therefore, it is subject to change for each ceremony. Additional tickets are not available and cannot be purchased.

Where can I get a list of hotels in the APU area?
A list of local hotels is available in the Local Resources section of this site.

How do I order personalized graduation announcements?

Can I take pictures during the ceremony?
There will be a designated photography area for guests. Those taking pictures during the ceremony must stay within the designated area to avoid disrupting the ceremony.

A professional photographer will be available near student check-in for families and graduates to take photos. Photographers will stop taking personal photos 30 minutes prior to the ceremony so graduates can line up and families can go to their seats. Proofs will be mailed approximately one week after the ceremony, at which time you will have the option to purchase enlargements. If you have questions regarding your proofs, contact

The commencement ceremony will also be professionally recorded by APU. You may purchase a personalized DVD for $19.99, plus tax and shipping, at or by calling (800) 933-1950.

Will there be a close-up photo taken of my student when he/she receives his/her diploma?
A professional photographer will take pictures of each student while shaking hands with the president of the university. Proofs will be mailed to each graduate a few weeks after the ceremony. At that time, the student may review the proofs and purchase the photos directly from the photography studio.

Are there any other special events for us to attend as parents/relatives of graduating seniors?
There are often special receptions that occur on or around graduation day. Visit the Commencement page to view a list of receptions for the day.

Can I take my dog or other pet to the commencement ceremony?
No animals are allowed in the stadium for the ceremony with the exception of service animals as defined in the Service Animal as a Disability Accommodation Policy.

Can I bring a noisemaker to celebrate my student's graduation?
No. Noisemakers or items that are thrown (like tortillas, beach balls, etc.) will be confiscated by Campus Safety.

Can I purchase a video of the event?
Yes, commencement ceremonies are professionally recorded by APU. You may purchase a personalized DVD for $19.99, plus tax and shipping, at or by calling (800) 933-1950. DVDs will begin shipping June 1.

Can I purchase flowers, leis, APU keepsakes, or concessions at the event?
The APU Bookstore, concessions, and a limited number of flowers and leis will be available for purchase inside the stadium or Event Center.

I have a guest with special needs. Is there accommodation for them?
There will be a handicapped seating section reserved, as well as a sign language interpreter for guests who are hearing impaired, and Spanish transmitters. If you have a guest who needs other accommodations, please email