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CalArts Graduation

Friday, May 16, 2014 at 6 pm

California Institute of the Arts announces the 2014 graduating class. The ceremony will be held in the Graduation Courtyard of the CalArts campus (northside of campus, along McBean Parkway) on Friday, May 16, 2014 at 6 pm.

Ceremony Information

The ceremony is very informal, as is CalArts. There are no robes, gowns or hats. The ceremony also takes place outside, so depending on the weather, the temperature can range from very warm to cool once the sun sets.

Seating is limited, so if you are expecting a large group it is advised to come early to secure seats.

We suggest that extra time be allowed for the drive up the 5 freeway on Friday evening. It is a favorite route out of Los Angeles and is often more crowded and slower than anticipated. Drive time from LAX to CalArts can take as long as 1.5 hours during rush hour.


Parking on campus is limited, however off-site parking and a shuttle back to CalArts will be available. If parking on campus is preferred, it is recommended to arrive 2 hours prior to the beginning of the ceremony. Disabled parking, with visible placard, is available on campus.


At the conclusion of the Graduation ceremony, a reception with hors d'oeuvres and drinks will be provided in the Main Gallery.

If you have any time-sensitive questions, please contact the Office of Student Affairs at (661) 253-7874 or at studentaffairs@calarts.edu for assistance.

Graduation Info: Letter to Graduates from Student Affairs | May 7, 2014

Dear Graduating Calartian,

The arrival of the Graduating Class 2014 at Calarts is fast approaching: Friday, May 16 at 6 pm.

Graduation is a day of celebration and ceremony, and you will play the most important role.

WE HAVE ARRIVED! captures the vision and theme of this year’s ceremony with 446 graduating Calartians descending on the Graduation Courtyard, and John Lasseter, Chief Creative Officer at The Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, as the honorary degree recipient and speaker. We look forward to his remarks.

Here is important information about what you will be doing on May 16 so that you are prepared for this significant day:

Graduate Line-up For Processional

Graduating students will check in at designated stations in the hallways of the second floor on Friday, May 16th at 5 pm. Students will line up according to School, degree and alphabetical order. Look for the sign with the name of your school next to a table at the following locations:

  • CRITICAL STUDIES: In the Dance studios hallway, near room A201.
  • CRITICAL STUDIES and FILM/VIDEO Interschool: Check in with Critical Studies.
  • FILM/VIDEO: Hallway by the SuperShop.
  • FILM and ART Interschool: Check in with F/V as described above.
  • ART: Long hallway between the Bijou and the A block elevator. First door in the hallway is A222.
  • CRITICAL STUDIES and ART Interschool: Check in with Art at location noted above.
  • DANCE: In the hallway in front of the Bijou Theater.
  • THEATER: In the hallway in front of the Health Office.
  • MUSIC: In the hallway leading to the School of Film/Video.

Once you have checked in and received your color-coded and numbered wristband, please stay in the vicinity of the line for your school. The procession into the Graduation Courtyard will begin promptly at 6 pm.

If you arrive after the procession has started, please go to the glass doors where the procession begins and look for the Registrar’s table.

Presentation of Graduates

Follow the directions of the staff volunteers who will lead you to the ramp for your walk across the stage and receive congratulations by your dean and school officials.

You will be directed back to your seat for conferring of the degrees by the President, followed by a formal recognition of the graduating class to your families and guests. Your cooperation with our staff and student volunteers is greatly appreciated!

Graduation Finale/Recessional

A festive celebration will conclude the ceremony and not-to-be-missed!

Celebrate your arrival and invasion as Calartians with a fantastic fireworks and light show closing out Graduation 2014. RETURN TO YOUR SEAT for the GRAND FINALE... DONT MISS IT!!!

The recessional will begin immediately following the fireworks, led by the African Ensemble and VIPs to the Main Gallery where you can connect with your family and guests.

The first annual Graduation Afterparty for graduates, hosted by Student Council, will take place following the reception in the Main Gallery, 11:30PM – 2AM.


  • Music Clip: If you would like special music played when you walk across the stage, you MUST submit the electronic version of your short (9 seconds) piece of music by Monday, May 12th. Please email your music clip to gradsong@calarts.edu, using the instructions that were sent to you in a previous email.
  • Announcements: Extra announcements are available at Student Affairs at A207.
  • Seating: You are allowed only three guests for seating at the ceremony. All other guests must sit in the grassy area of the courtyard.
  • Disabled Parking/Seating: If you or your guests require disabled parking or seating, a reservation must be made by Wednesday, May 14th. Please contact Tina in Student Affairs by telephone (661-253-7874) or email (studentaffairs@calarts.edu).
  • Alcohol/Smoking in the Courtyard: Please do not bring alcohol to this event. No alcohol or smoking is allowed in the Graduation Courtyard. We have planned a reception for all graduates and their guests, which include food, beer and wine, and will begin immediately after the ceremony.
  • Arrive for Line-up: 5 pm at your designated location.

See you on May 16 for what promises to be a memorable graduation. CONGRATULATIONS—you have arrived!

Renee Barnett Terry, Interim Dean of Student Affairs

Travel Information

There is a wide selection of hotels near the campus; the closest are located in Stevenson Ranch. Please take into account, however, that
most hotels are not within walking distance of the campus. If a shuttle is dropping you off at a hotel from the airport, you may need to make arrangements to take a taxi to the campus.

This website is the most comprehensive listing of hotels in the Valencia area. Many of these hotels offer a "CalArts" rate; if you would like to know if a hotel offers a CalArts rate, it is best to call the local Hotel phone number rather than the toll-free telephone number.

Last edited by pfraser on May 08, 2014
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