This spring we will resume the tradition of two distinct ceremonies. At SIPA Graduation on May 15 (also known as Class Day), we’ll recognize all of SIPA’s own master’s and PhD candidates. At University Commencement on May 18, Columbia will officially confer academic degrees on graduates from every school.

SIPA Graduation (Class Day)


School of International and Public Affairs Class of 2022 — Columbia Commencement Week 2022


Graduation Speaker 

Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield
Representative of the United States to the United Nations



Sunday, May 15, 2022


6:008:00 p.m.


South Lawn, Columbia University Morningside Campus


Link TBD

SIPA will honor degree recipients from May 2022, February 2022, and October 2021 in a School-wide ceremony on the south lawn of Columbia’s Morningside Campus.

Each participant may invite five (5) guests, each of whom must submit proof of vaccination and otherwise observe the University’s COVID-19 guidelines. The ceremony will be broadcast via livestream for those unable to attend in person.

*Guests and graduates are encouraged to bring their own refillable water bottles to the ceremony (water bottles can be filled at designated water stations across campus).*


2022 School Ceremonies will be broadcast live on the Commencement website.

Where to Assemble

SIPA graduates assemble in Alfred Lerner Hall Roone Arledge Auditorium at 4:30 p.m

Attire Instructions

All graduates must dress in official Columbia University academic attire to attend the SIPA Graduation (cap and gown designating the degree being awarded).  Caps and gowns can be purchased in-person at the Columbia University Bookstore through graduation day

Comfortable shoes are recommended, as the procession will take place along the cobblestone walkways of the Morningside Campus. 
There will be no facilities to hold or check bags, so please leave all personal items at home or with your guests for safekeeping.


Guest seating will begin at 5:15 pm.  Guests should line-up in the queues to enter the campus on 114th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue.  All guests require tickets for admission to areas reserved for the SIPA Graduation Ceremony.  Seats are on a first come, first served basis – they are unassigned and cannot be reserved.  The ceremony will be simulcast on large screens, so all guests will have a full view of the graduation.

 Guests with disabilities, limited mobility, or requiring sign language assistance should enter the campus at Amsterdam Avenue and 116th Street, where they will be directed to a designated seating area on the South Lawn.  No special tickets are required (general admission tickets may be used).  Guests requiring accommodations should contact Disability Services at [email protected] or via phone at 212-854-2388 (Voice/TTY).

There will be no facilities to hold or check bags and it is highly recommended that, if possible, guests leave strollers at home. 


A reception for SIPA graduates and their guests will be held on Ancell Plaza immediately following the SIPA Graduation. Guests will not be permitted into the reception area until after the ceremony has concluded and all students have left the South Lawn.

Updated Covid-19 policy for graduation

All guests must abide by University COVID-19 guidelines and policies. Guests who are fully vaccinated should be prepared to provide vaccination card proof on the day of the event. Guests who are unable to receive the COVID-19 vaccination(s) for medical, religious, or other reasons will be required to do the following: 1) each unvaccinated individual over the age of 2 years old will wear a face mask during all events and 2) proof of a negative COVID-19 test, a same-day, at-home antigen test on the day of each event or PCR test within 48 hours of the first attended event, is required for any unvaccinated guest over age 5, and must be shown at entry for all indoor and outdoor events.


You will not receive your diploma at the SIPA Graduation Ceremony.  Diplomas will be mailed to all graduates to the permanent address as designated on your ‘Application for Degree’ form.  You can expect to receive your mailed diploma 4-6 weeks after graduation.  You can check on the status of your diploma mailing with the Office of the Registrar Diploma Desk via e-mail at [email protected] or phone at 212-854-8319.

Diplomas will not be released, however, if a student has not fulfilled all degree requirements or has an outstanding balance or hold on his or her student account.  Please check Student Services Online (SSOL) for any holds, missing grades, or outstanding account balances prior to graduation.


Public transportation or taxi service is highly recommended. There is no on-campus parking available during Commencement Week.  There are only a few parking garages near campus - these fill up early and cannot be counted on for convenient parking.

A wheelchair-accessible shuttle bus will circle the perimeter of campus to pick up guests with disabilities needing assistance and their families. The shuttle bus will transport guests to the designated disability access gates.  Event staff will be available at the gates to assist guests to their seats.


If your family members need a formal invitation to graduation in order to get travel visas, OSA can provide one—just fill out the student letter request form.

Columbia University Commencement

Date: Wednesday, May 18, 2022; Time: 10:30 a.m.
College Walk, Columbia University Morningside Campus

Visit Columbia’s Commencement 2022 website for the latest information about the all-University ceremony.


Please contact SIPA’s Office of Student Affairs by email at [email protected] or telephone at 212-854-8690. You can also visit OSA on the 6th Floor of the International Affairs Building.

For 2020 and 2021 Graduates

SIPA will host an on-campus event May 19 for members of the Classes of 2020 and 2021. Learn more here!