Fall 2017 Commencement

10 AM

Candidates should report by 8:30 AM for individual photo sessions and then be prepared to line up for the 10 AM Commencement Convocation

All Colleges

Saturday, December 16, 2017
William “Billy” J. Nicks, Sr. Building

Dr. Felecia M. Nave, Provost & Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
Dr. Felecia M. Nave
Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

Dear Fall 2017 Graduates,

Congratulations on working hard, pushing through, and earning a degree from Prairie View A&M University! You are now forever part of our great university’s 141-year history. On behalf of the faculty and staff here on “The Hill,” we salute you, your family, and your efforts. We fully expect that you will become one of PVAMU’s many Proud Productive Panthers as you embark upon this next chapter of your lives.

As you browse through this page, please keep in mind that we want your graduation day to be a special one! Our team posted a host of useful information about our commencement convocation, which should help the day go by smoothly for you and your loved ones. When it’s all said and done, believe it or not, December 16, 2017, will not be the end of your educational journey. Learning is a lifelong endeavor, and we do not want you to ever stop progressing and growing!

Again, we congratulate you on your success, and we wish you the best and brightest future.

Dr. Felecia M. Nave
Provost & Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole
Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole

Commencement Speaker

Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole

Anthropologist, educator and museum director, Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole, will deliver the keynote address at the University’s 22nd Fall Commencement.

Johnnetta Betsch Cole is a Principal Consultant with Cook Ross, Inc., a consulting firm located in Silver Spring, Maryland, USA. The firm provides solutions to organizations around the world in the areas of diversity, inclusion, cultural competency, leadership development and organizational change management. Before assuming her current position, she served for eight years as the Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art (NMAfA).

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Commencement Guide


Each graduating candidate will receive 10 tickets for family, friends, and other guests. 5 of the tickets will grant entry into the William J. “Billy” Nicks Building and the remaining 5 tickets will grant entry into alternate viewing sites on campus.

  • Tickets are required for each guest. Children (12 months of age and under) who sit in a lap during the entire ceremony do not require a ticket. Tickets are limited due to building capacity restrictions.
  • If a graduate is not approved to graduate, the tickets MUST BE RETURNED upon status of graduation notification.
  • Because of the size of this year’s graduating class, extra tickets, beyond 10, will not be available. Therefore, there will be a limit of 10 tickets per student, unless your fellow classmates share their unused tickets.
  • Selling commencement tickets is prohibited. They are free and are not for profit.
  • Please make arrangements to distribute your tickets before the graduation.

Tickets will be distributed on Thursday, November 30, 2017 through each College and School to graduates who have been certified to participate in the ceremony. Each candidate is responsible for attending the announced meetings. Please review the following schedule for the information for your college or school.

View Schedule

Alternate Viewing Sites

Should the William “Billy” J. Nicks, Sr. Building become full, alternate viewing sites on campus will be available in the Hobart Thomas Taylor Sr. Hall, Student Recreation Center, and the Willie A. Tempton Sr. Memorial Student Center (MSC) Ballroom and Auditorium for guests. The Commencement Ceremony will be simulcast live and will be shown in real time.

Campus Map

Live Streaming

For those friends, families, and guests unable to attend the Commencement Ceremony in person, Prairie View A&M University will stream the event live. Links to the stream can be found on the PVAMU homepage as well as by visiting pvamu.edu/stream. Additionally the University will stream the ceremony live from the official Facebook page.


Parking attendants will be on hand to guide visitors to parking spaces. Please follow instructions closely, as doing so will allow for convenient event parking and exiting. Parking for the event is free, and no prior permission or parking pass is needed to park. Drivers are expected to follow all parking regulations set forth by the parking attendants.


There is no reserved seating. All tickets are general admission. Guests are encouraged to arrive early to find parking and seating. All guests must be seated at least 15 minutes prior to the start of the ceremony.

Special Services

A section will be reserved in the William “Billy” J. Nicks, Sr. Building and each alternate viewing site for persons requiring special needs accommodations. Space in this area is limited, so please plan to arrive early if special assistance is needed.


Official photography for the Commencement Ceremony will be done by a professional photography service. Photos of all graduates will be taken while the graduate is on stage. Graduates will be given cards and order forms at the Commencement Rehearsal to be completed and returned to Flash Photography should he/she want to order photos. Guests may take personal photos of the graduate but are prohibited from blocking the aisles and walkways.


During the ceremony, graduates receive a diploma case presented to them by the President of the University or a University Representative. The actual diploma is mailed to the graduate at the mailing address designated by the graduate in his/her graduation application. Please allow 6-8 weeks for diplomas to arrive.

Caps and Gowns

The University Bookstore will provide information about pricing and pick-up of caps and gowns, class rings and graduation announcements.

Graduation Gifts & Memorabilia

Information about PVAMU branded gifts and alumni merchandise can be found on the University Bookstore’s website.

Social Media

We welcome graduates and guests to post their graduation photos to social media sites using the hashtag #PVGradSwag

Inclement Weather Closure 1/17/18

All PVAMU campuses will remain closed through tomorrow, Wednesday, January 17, due to inclement weather and the potential for hazardous road conditions. Please continue to monitor the PVAMU website and official social media sites for more information.