- When and where is the ceremony?
- What should I wear to the Commencement Ceremony?
- Where can I purchase announcements and diploma frames?
- What should graduating seniors do ASAP to prepare for graduation?
- Where should family and friends stay?
- How many tickets do I receive? Where and when do I pick up the tickets?
- Where are diplomas mailed?
- Will photographs be taken?
- What parking is available near the Auditorium Theatre?
- What are the directions to the Auditorium Theatre?
Commencement: Frequently Asked Questions
2016 Commencement Ceremony
Monday, May 16, 2016, 1:00 p.m.
50 E. Congress Pkwy., Chicago, IL
SAIC does not require a cap and gown for the ceremony. This is a celebratory occasion where graduates are invited to dress as they feel appropriate.
SAIC is partnering with Herff Jones to provide both graduation announcements and diploma frames. Announcements and frames may be purchased by visiting this website.
Get a credit check from Academic Advising and Student Success, Sullivan Center, 36 South Wabash Avenue, suite 1204, to make sure your degree requirements will be met. Call 312.629.6800 to make an appointment.
- File a graduation application with the Registration and Record's office (Sullivan Center, 36 South Wabash Avenue, suite 1450).
- Please note that students wishing to participate in the graduation ceremony and Undergraduate or Graduate Exhibitions may only have six (6) credits outstanding to complete their degree after the spring semester, and must register for these 6 credits in the summer session by the last day of the spring semester.
- Check to see if you have any holds (e.g., tuition balance, library/media center fines) via SAIC Self-Service. These must be cleared before you receive your diploma.
- If you do not anticipate completing your program by the end of summer, please contact Brad Erz in the Registration and Record's office at 312.629.6700.
We strongly urge anyone requiring hotel accommodations for Commencement weekend to make reservations immediately, as we anticipate that hotels will fill up quickly. A variety of hotels are located in the Chicagoland area. It is generally easiest to find hotels in Chicago through websites like orbitz.com, expedia.com, or travelocity.com.
Click here for more information on where to stay, including hotels with preferred rates for SAIC guests.
Each graduating student will receive three guest tickets, plus their own individual ticket. No one will be allowed to enter the Auditorium Theatre without a ticket.
Tickets will be available Wednesday, April 13 through Monday, May 9 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and can be picked up in the Campus Life Office (Sullivan Building, 36 South Wabash Avenue, suite 1203), Monday through Friday. A current SAIC ID is required to pick up Commencement Tickets. Please note ticket distribution will begin early at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 13.
Should graduates want to request more than three guest tickets, they may put their name on a waiting list for two additional tickets at the time they pick up their original allotment. If additional tickets are available, students will be contacted via their SAIC email address on On Wednesday, May 11, and should pick up the additional tickets on Thursday, May 12.
Diplomas are mailed to the address you submitted on your Graduation Application. If you wish to pick up your diploma at the Registration and Records, please notify their office: 312.629.6700 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photographs will be taken by Grad Images, a professional photography organization that specializes in photographing Commencement ceremonies. Three individual pictures will be taken of each graduate during of the ceremony and proofs will be emailed to the student within five days of the ceremony. Several different package options will be available for purchase.
To learn more, visit gradimages.com.
The two parking garages closest to the theatre are Loop Auto Parks at 524 South Wabash Avenue (312.922.1499) and Grant Park South Garage at 325 South Michigan Avenue (312.616.0600). Loop Auto Parks costs approximately $18 to park, and the parking is above ground. Grant Park South Garage is underground and will cost approximately $30.
From the north. If traveling from the North on the Kennedy Expressway or Edens Expressway (Interstate 90/94), exit at Monroe Street and drive east to Michigan Avenue.
If driving on the Outer Drive (North Lake Shore Drive/Highway 41), exit at Congress Parkway and drive west to Wabash Avenue.
From the south. If traveling from the South on the Dan Ryan Expressway (Interstates 90/94), exit at Congress Parkway and drive east to State Street. If driving on Lake Shore Drive (Highway 41), exit at Congress Parkway and drive west to Wabash Ave.
From the east. If traveling from the East on the Indiana Toll Road (Interstate 90), take the Chicago Skyway to the Stony Island exit, follow Highway 41 (Lake Shore Drive) to downtown Chicago, exit at Congress Parkway and drive west to Wabash Ave.
If coming in from the East on Interstate 90/94, continue on the Dan Ryan Expressway, exit at Congress Parkway, drive east to State Street.
From the west. If traveling from the West on the Eisenhower Expressway (Interstate 290), which becomes Congress Parkway, drive east until State Street.
By public transportation
Public transportation is one of the easiest and most economical ways to get around in Chicago. The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) operates a network of buses and elevated/subway trains throughout Chicago. For directions to Auditorim Theatre, call the Travel Information Center at 312.836.7000 (from any local area code) or visit transitchicago.com and complete a trip planner to find the quickest or most direct transit route to the Auditorium Theatre using CTA buses and trains. CTA train stations close to the theater include the Red Line Jackson Street exit, Blue Line LaSalle Street Exit and the Brown/Green/Orange Line Library/State/Van Buren exit.
When traveling from the suburbs, Metra, the premier commuter rail system, makes traveling to and from downtown Chicago and its surrounding areas easy and convenient with three downtown stations. The stations are Union Station (Canal Street, between Adams and Jackson Boulevard), the Randolph Street Station (Michigan Avenue and Randolph Street), and the Ogilvie Transportation Center (Madison and Canal Streets). After exiting the Metra station, proceed to 50 E Congress Parkway.
For more information please visit the Auditorium Theatre website.