Where can I stay and eat in the Ripon area?
Click here for a list of lodging and dining options in the area.
Where is the Commencement rain location?
Commencement will be held Sunday, May 14, whether it rains, sleets or snows. Though most of us would prefer a warm day filled with bright sunshine, the weather has been known to provide challenges in the past. Sunday’s 1:30 p.m. ceremony is planned to take place on the lawn of Harwood Memorial Union. If the weather turns sour, however, a decision will be made Sunday morning about whether to move the ceremony inside or under a tent.
Should the conditions be questionable, an update about the location of the ceremony will be posted by 8 a.m. on the College’s Twitter and Facebook pages, as well as the College’s official website (ripon.edu).
In Wisconsin, May weather can be balmy or downright frigid. More often than not, it is both on the same day. Please be prepared for changes in temperature by dressing in layers. The ceremony generally lasts an hour and a half, so it may be 50° F and cloudy at the beginning and 70° F and sunny by the end, or vice versa. Nothing compares to an outdoor Commencement ceremony at Ripon, and, if at all possible, the ceremony will be held on the Union lawn as scheduled. So dress appropriately for any changes in the weather.
Where can I park?
Free parking is available on the streets surrounding the Union; however, spots will fill fast and early. Click to view our visitor parking map. Off-street parking, denoted on the map by a P, is available in lots behind Smith Hall, on Thorne Street, at the corner of Seward Street and Woodside Avenue and off Ransom Street across from East Hall. Handicapped-accessible parking, denoted on the map with an H, is available near the Union, outside Pickard Commons and at Evans Admission Center. Handicapped parking also will be marked on Seward Street. If the ceremony is held inside or under a tent, free parking is available.
Is accessible seating and parking available?
Accessible seating and parking is available for the Commencement ceremony. Please ask an usher if you need special assistance. Individuals requiring special assistance should call the Office of Constituent Engagement at 920-748-8126 by May 6 to ensure appropriate accommodations.
When do I need to leave the residence halls?
The residence halls will close at 6 p.m. Sunday, May 14. All students must have their belongings removed and be checked out before that time. Students are reminded that they may donate unwanted items as part of the “Lighten Your Load” program (look for more information to come).
Do I need a ticket to attend the Commencement ceremony?
There are no tickets for the Commencement ceremony. Seating is first-come, first-served. While seating will be available outdoors, there are also plenty of grassy areas, and guests are welcome to bring blankets or lawn chairs. If the ceremony is moved indoors, seating will be more limited; so guests should plan to arrive early.
When and where is Commencement rehearsal?
Graduates are reminded to attend the Commencement rehearsal at 4 p.m., Friday, May 12, in Farr Hall’s Bear Auditorium. Be sure Dean Wingenbach pronounces your name correctly!
When and where is the Senior Class photo to be taken?
Seniors are reminded to show up for the class photo at 3:30 p.m. Friday, May 12. A group photo of the Class of 2017 will be taken on the lawn in front of Tri-Dorms. Rain site is Bear Auditorium.
Will Starbucks be open on Sunday, May 14?
“We Proudly Brew” Starbucks, located in the lower level of S.N. Pickard Commons, will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 14. Starbucks offers hot and cold beverages, snacks and other refreshments.
What's the Baccalaureate Service? Is it religious? Who should attend?
Each year, the College includes an interfaith religious service as part of its Commencement weekend activities. Typically held the evening before Commencement, this year’s baccalaureate service will be held at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 13, in First Congregational Church of Ripon. The ceremony is created by officers of the graduating class and the religion department.
The service does not focus on any one religious faith, but rather includes readings from each of the different religious traditions represented within the senior class. Musical selections are performed by students, and a brief address also is given by an individual chosen by members of the graduating class.
All graduating seniors and their families are invited to attend this free event, as are the faculty and staff of the College.
What's the policy on honor cords?
In past years, the College prohibited the wearing of any cords or stoles other than College honor cords and Phi Beta Kappa stoles. All departmental honor cords, Greek stoles and other accoutrements (within reason) are now allowed during the ceremony. Those items, however, will not be provided by the College or listed in the program.
Your question not answered here?
Call or email the Office of Constituent Engagement at 920-748-8126.