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Commencement 2015

 Please visit this web site again for updated information. If you have specific questions that are not addressed on this page, please send an email to Laura Gracia.


Date: Saturday, June 13, 2015
Time: 7:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Location: UC San Diego, RIMAC Arena
Open to: Invited Guests, Students, Alumni

Commencement Speaker - United Nation Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres


Christiana Figueres was appointed Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) by UN Secretary-General BAN Ki‑moon in 2010, and reappointed for a second three-year term in July 2013. 

Ms. Figueres has been involved in climate change negotiations since 1995, when she founded the Center for Sustainable Development in the Americas.  She has also served as a representative of the government of Costa Rican as a member of the negotiating team for, and was important in the approval of the Kyoto Protocol. Ms. Figueres was a member of the Executive Board of the Clean Development Mechanism and, from 2007-2009, Vice President of the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties.

She is a widely published author on the design of climate solutions and a frequent adviser to the private sector, including C-Quest Capital, and lecturer at many universities and colleges.  Ms. Figueres has also served on boards of non-governmental organizations involved in climate change issues.  She was Director of the Technical Secretariat, Renewable Energy in the Americas (REIA).

Ms. Figueres holds a Bachelor’s degree from Swarthmore College, Master’s Degree in Anthropology from the London School of Economics, and a certificate in Organizational Development from Georgetown University.  She was born in San José, Costa Rica.

Coffee Service - 8:00 a.m.

Hot and cold beverages will be available to graduates and their guests at the RIMAC entrance prior to the commencement ceremony. 

Commencement Ceremony Begins - 9:30 a.m.
7:30 a.m.        Arrive and find parking
8 – 8:30 a.m.  Graduates check-in at RIMAC Gym
9:10 a.m.        Graduates line up
9:30 a.m.        Commencement begins
11:30 a.m.      Ceremony concludes and is followed by light refreshments

Don’t forget to have a hearty breakfast.
Graduates bring your cap, gown, hood, and tassel. At the end of the ceremony you will be returning the hood and gown to the designated boxes. Please review the weather and dress accordingly.

Family and Friends Commencement Reception

Date: Friday, June 12, 2015

Time: 5 – 7 p.m.
Location: UC San Diego, Faculty Club
Open to: Invited Guests, Students, Alumni
Register here

Family and friends of graduating students are invited to attend this reception, which establishes Commencement weekend as not only the marking of the next step in IR/PS students' lives, but also as a celebration of the achievements of our students and alumni.  

The event is an opportunity for students and their families to celebrate with fellow students, alumni, faculty and staff. Student awards will be presented on this evening as the graduating class officially joins the prestigious ranks of IR/PS alumni. A highlight of the evening will be the presentation of the annual "IR/PS Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award."

Visitor Information

UC San Diego has a visitor information website with information on directions, hotels, and more. We recommend making hotel reservations early if you are planning to stay in the La Jolla/UTC area. Undergraduate commencements are the same weekend and hotels near campus fill up quickly.

Plan to arrive at 8:00 a.m. as parking is provided on a first-come first-served basis. Parking for Commencement is free, but heavy traffic is expected. Check back closer to the date of the ceremony for updated parking information.

Student Information

Graduation Workshop

All MPIA and BA/MIA graduating students are required to attend one of the below IR/PS Graduation Workshops:

Monday, April 6, 2015 from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. in room 3201
Tuesday, April 7, 2015 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in room 3201

During the workshops graduates will be given an overview of the commencement ceremony, a review of the graduation checklist, register with Alumni Relations and complete graduation paperwork. Failure to attend and correctly process paperwork will result in delayed conferral of degree.

Foreign Guests
Please contact Student Affairs if you need a letter regarding the visit of guests from outside of the United States. In order to prepare the letter, Student Affairs will need the names of your guests and their relation to you, their address, city and country of residence, their expected arrival and departure dates. Please specify whether you need a printed version of the letter or an electronic PDF. 

Academic Dress
Order your regalia (cap, gown, hood and tassel) through the UC San Diego Bookstore. After selecting “UCSD School of International Relations & Pacific Studies” the bookstore website will redirect you to a partner website where you will again select “School of Int’l Relations & Pacific Studies” so that you can order the correct regalia. The approximate cost to rent the master’s regalia is $61 + tax. The deadline for placing orders without incurring a late charge is April 26. A $10 late fee will be assessed for orders placed from April 27 through May 23. A $20 late fee will be assessed for orders placed from May 24 to May 29. The regalia order website will close on May 30. Candidates will be informed by the bookstore concerning pick up of regalia.

Students are required to wear appropriate attire to participate in Commencement.
In addition to the ceremonial dress that must be worn during Commencement, graduates are encouraged to wear light-weight, professional dress under their robes. Graduates may wear leis and cultural apparel. Dean’s Fellows also wear honor cords, which are provided prior to the ceremony by Student Affairs. After the ceremony, please leave your gown and hood in the designated boxes. Graduates can keep the cap and tassel, Dean's Fellows also keep their honor cords.

Commencement Photos
Guests are ask to refrain from approaching the stage during the commencement ceremony. Instead, a professional photographer will be at Commencement to take your photo as you exit the stage. Photos will be available online for purchase after the ceremony.

The ceremonial certificate you receive at commencement is not a diploma. Degrees take several months to process. Diplomas are available approximately four to six months after graduation. Your diploma will be sent to the permanent address that you list on your degree paperwork (and it must match your address on TritonLink). If you do not receive your diploma within six months, please contact Academic Records at 858-534-3144. Contact Student Affairs if you need verification of your graduate status before the issuance of your diploma; we will provide a letter from the director of Degree Programs.

You may log into your Academic History within TritonLink to print an unofficial copy of your transcript. To order an official transcript, click here and follow the instructions on the Office of the Registrar website.

Students plan to arrive at 7:30 a.m. as parking is provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Parking for commencement is free, but we recommend allowing extra time for expected heavy traffic. Parking will be on a first come, first serve basis. Please follow signage to appropriate lots. 

Students and Guests with Disabilities
Hearing Impaired
Sign language interpreters will be provided during the Commencement ceremony. However, you must contact Laura Gracia by June 1 to reserve special seating.
Wheelchair Rental
Should any of your visitors require a wheelchair, please contact Eric's Medical Supply Inc. at 619-298-9640. The price of the rental will be $12/day and includes free delivery. You MUST contact them by June 5 to reserve a chair for Commencement weekend.

For any other issues relating to disability accommodations, please contact Laura Gracia by June 1.