Fall Commencement will be held in Bender Arena on Sunday, December 17 at 10 a.m. Doors open 45 minutes before the ceremony. Allow enough time to park and be seated 10 minutes before the start of the ceremony, since the lobby is closed during the processional. There are no coat check facilities in Bender Arena. Graduates should leave coats, purses, etc. with a guest, locked in their vehicles or in a locker in the East Quad Building or University Library. For security purposes, do not leave bags unattended.
We encourage our guests to use public transportation, such as the DC Metro, and the complimentary AU Shuttle. Shuttle service runs between main campus and the Tenleytown-AU Metro station, which is on Metro's Red Line. Shuttle buses will run every 10 minutes from the Nebraska Avenue and south-side shuttle stops. The north-side shuttle stop behind Kogod will not be in use and the tunnel will be closed to vehicular traffic on Sunday, December 17.
Parking on campus will be limited for Fall Commencement. One commencement parking pass will be issued to each student who rents a cap and gown. The cap/gown rental serves as the graduate's registration to participate in the ceremony. The parking pass will be valid from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and good for the Katzen Arts Center Parking Garage. Graduates will receive additional information when they pick up their passes during Cap and Gown Distribution in the Bridge Café (formerly the lower level of the Campus Store) on Friday, December 15, and Saturday, December 16. Passes will be distributed at a separate table next to the caps/gowns. Parking passes are complimentary. Additional passes will not be available for purchase.
Parking for university events is prohibited on neighborhood streets in accordance with Washington, D.C., regulations and AU’s Good Neighbor Policy.
Guests with valid state issued handicapped permits/plates requiring accessible parking will be permitted to park in the Sports Center Parking Garage adjacent to Bender Arena.
Drivers may also drop off guests with limited mobility at an accessible entrance before proceeding to their designated parking garage. This entrance, located on the south side of Bender Arena across from the Asbury Building, allows for ground-level access to the ceremony area. Public Safety staff will be present in the parking areas to direct vehicles to this entrance. Parking lots and the accessible entrance to Bender Arena are indicated on the campus map.