2016 Commencement Schedule of Events

Friday, May 6 – Sunday, May 8, 2016

General hours

Bookstore hours for Commencement weekend

Friday: 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
Saturday: Noon-5:30 p.m.
Sunday: 8 a.m.-2 p.m.

Hilltop Café hours for Commencement weekend

Saturday: Lunch: 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. | Dinner: 5-6 p.m.
Sunday: Continental breakfast: 7:30-8:30 a.m. | Brunch: 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

Friday, May 6

Senior Class Reception

5:30-7:30 p.m.
Hall-Perrine Room, Thomas Commons

Saturday, May 7

Phi Beta Kappa Inauguration Ceremony

1:30-2:30 p.m.
Cole Library


3-4 p.m.
King Chapel

Guests should plan to arrive by 2:45 to ensure seating in King Chapel is available.
Baccalaureate will be livestreamed here.

President’s Reception for Seniors and Families

4-5:30 p.m.
Bardsley Grand Foyer, Thomas Commons

Sunday, May 8

Commencement ceremony

10 a.m.-noon

The ceremony will be held outdoors on the quad bordered by South Hall, College Hall, and Norton Geology.

Note: If you do not plan to participate in Commencement, please contact the Registrar’s Office at 319-895-4374 or

When do I need to be there? What should I wear?

Seniors must arrive at 9 a.m. in King Chapel to line up for the commencement ceremony.  Seniors will then proceed to the ceremony location (College Hall lawn) once everyone has assembled.

College staff will assist seniors with lining up and processing. Once the senior line is ready, the academic marshals will lead the seniors through the faculty and staff line and into the seating area.

What if there is severe weather expected during the outdoor ceremony?

If severe weather is expected, Commencement will be held in the Small Multi-Sport Center. Seniors will still be expected to line up for the ceremony at 9 a.m., but line-up will occur in the gym upstairs in the Sport Center. Notification of the venue change will occur by noon Friday via e-mail to all seniors and will be placed on the college’s homepage. If outdoors, umbrellas will not be allowed in the seating area. Ponchos will be provided in the event of rain.

What should I expect during the ceremony?

Cornell has a proud tradition of affinity seating, giving seniors the opportunity to sit with close friends from their class during the Commencement ceremony.

During the ceremony, the marshal will notify your row when you are to stand and move to the platform. You will enter the platform from the north side, receive your diploma cover from President Brand when your name is read, and exit the south side.

The ceremony will conclude with a benediction and recessional (for platform party and faculty only) during which everyone will stand and remain standing until the recessional is over.

When and where do I pick up my diploma?

After the ceremony please remember to pick up your diploma from the tables along the Ped Mall on the west side of College Hall prior to 1 p.m. Additional information about diploma distribution is available on the Registrar’s website.

The ceremony will be held outdoors on the quad bordered by South Hall, College Hall, and Norton Geology.  No tickets are required: adequate seating is available for all who wish to attend. Guests should arrive and be seated by 9:45 a.m. as the ceremony begins promptly at 10 a.m.
In the event that Commencement is moved indoors to the Small Multi-Sport Center, doors open at 8:30 a.m.

The Commencement ceremony will be livestreamed here.


Each graduate receives three complimentary tickets for brunch in the Hilltop Café following the Commencement ceremony. Additional tickets may be pre-purchased at a discounted rate of $10/adult and $5/children under 12. Tickets at the door are $13/adult and $6/children 12. There is no charge for children under 3. Tickets may be pre-purchased at the Hilltop Café or by contacting Joan Homrich, director of dining services, at (319) 895-4363.

Residence halls close (Spring Closing Information)

6 p.m.

Social media

Share graduation pictures and messages on social media using #CornellCGrad.


If you have any questions about Commencement weekend schedules and procedures, please feel free to call or stop by the Office of Academic Affairs on the second floor of Old Sem, 319-895-4210.

Move Out Info

Be sure to check out Residence Life’s page on Spring Closing Info to prepare for leaving campus for the end of the semester!

Here are important residence hall dates to know:

Residence Halls Close for Non-Graduates

Thursday, May 5th – Check out with your RA 11:00 am

Residence Halls Close for Graduates

Sunday, May 8th – Check out by 6:00 pm

Residence Halls Open for 2016-2017

Saturday, September 3rd 9:00 am


Cornell Block Party

Hosted by KRNL, Cornell Block Party (aka Merner Lawn Party) is a grand end of the year celebration.
On Saturday, April 30th from 6:30 to 9:30 on the Quad by Russell and PR. Featuring live music, games and prizes, lemonade, and beer for 21 and up. KRNL is bringing in artists like rock-and-roll group Music Band and hip hop artist Bryce Vine. Bring your competitive action and play a game of beach volleyball for a chance to win prizes! Drink responsibly! Contact cvalenzuela18 for questions.

RSVP to the Facebook event!

Stress-Free Zone

From the Counseling Center/Civic Engagement Office:

Color, get tips on managing stress, relax, &/or GET A FREE MASSAGE! Come to the Counseling Center to learn how to obtain a free massage and sign up before all the spots are filled!

Tuesday, April 26



Sponsored by the Counseling Center, Psi Chi, Intercultural Life, Intramurals & Wellness, Civic Engagement, Residence Life, and the Health Center. (Contact: Counseling Center, 319-895-4292)

Sustained Dialogue

Sustained Dialogue is a new student group on campus looking to fill executive board positions for the 16-17 school year. The purpose of Sustained Dialogue is to gather students for thoughtful dialogue concerning current campus issues potentially including, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion and socioeconomic status. The group will act as a resource for the community, particularly during times of conflict, and have programming that engages the whole community (like talk backs) as well as run small dialogue groups based around topics students are interested in discussing.

Submit an application (and see more about the different leadership positions available) HERE, by Friday, April 29.

Questions? Contact hmckie16

Fall Reservations

From the Information Desk:

Reservations Request for Fall 2016

Reservation requests for Fall 2016 will be accepted on Monday April 25th. BEFORE your request will be processed your group must complete the room setup contract. Take this week prior to April 25th to complete and turn in the room contract. Then on April 25th you can submit your reservation request and it will be processed without delay. Please remember requests will be honored on a first come first serve basis. Both the Room Setup Contract and the Reservation Request Form can be found with this link.


Campus Climate Concerns

Dear Members of the Cornell Community,

It has been a difficult week on the Cornell campus.  A series of events and anonymous statements by a few individuals have left some students, especially our Latina/Latino students, feeling hurt, fearful, and unwelcome at Cornell.  Last night, an anonymous harassing statement was found in a residence hall bathroom.

First and foremost, I want to make it clear that all members of our community; students, faculty, and staff; belong here and deserve to feel welcome and supported.

We are all members of a community with a core value celebrating the dignity and worth of each individual in a diverse community. Anonymous statements written in the middle of the night, whether they be on our Kiosks or on a bathroom wall, that aim to demean or frighten groups of students on our campus are not consistent with the values of Cornell College.

Further, harassment, threats and intimidation are not tolerated on our campus and are being investigated and students involved will be held accountable.

We are taking the following actions over the next few days:

  • Today I will be meeting with the Cornell faculty to discuss these issues and develop strategies to improve our campus climate.
  • In addition, I will be available today in Cole Library, room 310, from 2-4 PM to talk with any student or group of students who wish discuss any issues with me.
  • There will be an increased presence of Campus Safety on campus over the weekend.
  • President Brand will be meeting with student leaders over the weekend.
  • We are planning a meeting of the entire campus with President Brand.  Details will be forthcoming.



Bias Incident

Members of the Cornell Community,

Last night there was an incident that resulted in a report of targeted personal harassment directed towards a group of Latinx (Latina/Latino) Cornell College students by a group of other students.  Both Campus Safety and local law enforcement responded to the incident.  Immediately, we began an investigation that will include getting details from the students involved.

Direct threats and targeted harassment and intimidation of students are not tolerated by the Cornell College community.  The college takes reports of incidents very seriously.

Students found responsible for harassment and intimidation, or other violations of the Compass, will be held fully accountable for their behavior.  We are also working with law enforcement as they investigate this incident.

On behalf of the college community, I am deeply disappointed with any acts of personal harassment or intimidation of members of our community.  Our campus values the dignity and worth of each individual.  We are a campus strengthened by the diversity each member brings.  We all have a responsibility to be active participants in a welcoming learning community and I challenge each of us to step up to that responsibility.

If you are a student in need of support, please reach out to Gwen Schimek, Rev. Catherine Quehl-Engel, Mark Winder, or other faculty and staff members.  Please watch your email for more information about a gathering to demonstrate our support for each other.

In the spirit of community,


Weekend Events

Friday, April 15

Saturday, April 16

Sunday, April 17

If you want to be included on future Weekend Events roundups in the future, make sure to submit a request to the Master Calendar here or submit a marketing request here!