- 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 for Millennium Park?
- What are the directions to The Millennium Park?
- Where will the ceremony be held in case of severe weather?
Commencement: Frequently Asked Questions
2013 Commencement Ceremony
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Millennium Park Pritzker Pavilion
55 N. Michigan Ave.
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, 12th floor, Sullivan Center.
- 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 PeopleSoft 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 one for themselves. Should graduates want to request more than three guest tickets, they may put their name of 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 and may pick up the additional tickets. Based on the attendance of the past few commencement ceremonies, additional tickets may not be available.
Tickets may be picked up in the Campus Life Office, Sullivan Center, 36 South Wabash Avenue, suite 1203.
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.
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 24 hours of the ceremony. Several different package options will be available for purchase.
To learn more, visit gradimages.com.
Underground parking is available directly beneath the park in three garages. The Grant Park North Underground garage is accessible directly from Michigan Avenue at Randolph and Madison streets. The Millennium Park Garage is accessible from Columbus Drive between Randolph and Monroe Streets. The Monroe Street Garage is also accessible from Columbus Drive between Randolph and Monroe Streets.
For additional information please visit the Millennium Park website.
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 Randolph Street or Monroe Street and drive west to Michigan 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 Michigan Avenue and then north to Monroe Street. If driving on Lake Shore Drive (Highway 41), exit at Randolph Street and drive west to Michigan Avenue.
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 Monroe Street and drive west to Michigan Avenue.
If coming in from the East on Interstate 90/94, continue on the Dan Ryan Expressway, exit at Congress Parkway, drive east to Michigan Avenue and then north to Monroe Street.
From the west. If traveling from the West on the Eisenhower Expressway (Interstate 290), which becomes Congress Parkway, drive east to Michigan Avenue, and then turn north (left) to Monroe 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 Millennium Park, 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 Millennium Park using CTA buses and trains. CTA train stations close to Millennium Park include the Red Line Washington Street exit and the Brown/Green/Orange and Purple Line Madison/Wabash Street 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 four downtown stations. If arriving downtown via Union Station (Canal Street, between Adams and Jackson Boulevard), take CTA's #151 bus directly to Millennium Park. The Randolph Street Station exits directly on Michigan Avenue across from the park, the Ogilvie Transportation Center (Madison and Canal Streets) is quickly accessible to the park by CTA's #20 or #56 bus and the LaSalle Street Station (Congress and LaSalle Streets) is accessible to the park by CTA's #147 and #151 bus.
For more information please visit the Millennium Park website.
In the event severe weather is predicted, SAIC may relocate the Commencement venue. If such a decision is made, graduating students will receive an email and text alert providing further details. If no further communication is sent, the ceremony will be held at Millennium Park as planned. Further information will also be available on the SAIC graduation web page.