Instructions for Fall 2019 Commencement

Graduation day festivities are set for Thursday, December 12, 2019, at 6:00 p.m. at the El Dorado Conference Center, 311 S. West Avenue, El Dorado.

Please invite your family and friends to attend graduation. Be aware that parking may not be available close to the conference center, and it is advisable to arrive early.

Please do not park in the Brookshire’s parking lot, as your car may be towed.

Since we will not have a practice prior to Commencement day, it is important that you be at the Conference Center no later than 5:00 p.m.

Upon arrival, you will find the check-in and line-up area located in the Cypress/Oak/Loblolly rooms (across from the Bistro) on the first floor of the Conference Center. Because you will be marching in the processional, climbing a few steps onto the stage, and walking across the stage, we suggest you wear appropriate footwear.

Please study the following instructions carefully prior to your arrival on graduation day. In order to maintain the integrity and dignity of the ceremony, all candidates need to understand clearly the procedures listed below. 
(NOTE: Tassels should be placed on the right side of the cap.)

  1. Candidates for graduation will be lined up in alphabetical order by academic division. All candidates will be given a name card as they arrive to check-in and line up. The card also will have a number. This is your assigned position in the line. Your name will be read aloud according to what is on this card….please do not lose it!
  2. When directed by the Student Marshals, graduating students will leave the check-in and assembly area at 6:00 p.m.
  3. The order of procession will be: Grand Marshal and platform party, Faculty Marshal and faculty, Student Marshals and students.
  4. The processional will march down the center aisle of Murphy Hall. Candidates will be seated in a reserved area.
  5. Candidates will remain standing at their seats until they are instructed to be seated.
  6. Please follow activities as directed and outlined in the program.
  7. All candidates will rise at the time degrees are conferred when the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Murders, says, "Will the student candidates for graduation please rise?” At this point in the ceremony, Dr. Murders will turn to President Jones and report that the candidates standing have met degree requirements. Dr. Jones will then make comments and confer degrees en masse.
  8. After Dr. Jones's comments, Dr. Murders will say, "We will now recognize each of our graduates.” At this point, all except Row 1 will be seated.
  • Row 1 will remain standing and will move to line up as directed by the Student Marshal.
    This is when you need your name card!
  • The first candidate will walk up to the podium and hand his/her name card to whoever is standing at the lower podium, who will hand the card to Dr. Murders, who will announce it.
  • Graduates will walk across the stage to receive their diplomas from Dr. Jones and shake hands with a Board of Trustees representative.
  • Graduates will then exit the stage and return to their seats as directed by the Student Marshal and stand until all in that row have arrived. The Student Marshals will then direct the row of graduates to be seated.
  • While the first candidate is walking across the stage, the second candidate will hand his/her name card to the one at the lower podium. The candidate will remain standing at the foot of the steps until his/her name is called. Only one candidate should be on stage at any given time.
  1. When the last candidate in each row begins to walk up to the stage, the next row will rise and follow the same procedures as the previous row, as directed by the Student Marshals. This process will continue until all graduates have received their diplomas.
  2. During Dr. Jones’ closing remarks, you will be instructed to move your tassel from the right side to the left side of your cap.
  3. The recessional will be led by the platform party followed by the faculty. Graduates will follow the faculty out as directed by the Student Marshals. (Do not leave your seat or get out of line until you are directed to do so.)
  4. SouthArk would like to give each new graduate a small gift when he or she exits the auditorium.
    Please proceed to the check-in/line-up rooms to pick up your diploma.
  5. PTK graduates must return the gold stoles to the bookstore staff that will be stationed outside The Bistro. To avoid a charge to your account, please make sure you return the PTK stole.

Congratulations, Graduate!

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