GTU Commencement

Welcome to the
Graduate Theological Union
Commencement Website

Click here to watch the livestream of the 2019 GTU Commencement on May 9, 2019, at 4:00 pm 

Click here to watch a replay of the livesteam of the 2018 GTU Commencement

2018-2019 Graduates must submit important forms by March 1, 2019!
(See forms below)

We hope you find everything you need to know and, if appropriate, all the forms to use to keep us informed about your plans for the annual GTU Commencement program.  GTU PhD, ThD, and common MA graduates who finish their programs in October or May of the current academic year are invited to participate in any and all of the Commencement activities. GTU member schools traditionally hold their Commencement programs the week after the GTU. For information about 2019 commencement activities at GTU member schools, visit the webpages of individual schools.  


The GTU Commencement occurs once a year, usually on the second Thursday in May, and is open to the public (however, there is limited seating).  The event abounds with academic regalia, music, admittedly, a few speeches, and time to introduce each graduate to the community where the graduate receives a diploma and is invested in the hood of her/his degree.  This year, GTU Commencement Exercises will be held on:

Date:           Thursday, May 9, 2019
Time:           4:00 PM
Location:    Zaytuna College
                    2401 Le Conte Ave.
                    Berkeley, CA  94709

A tasty reception will follow at a nearby GTU location.

For Information about Commencement,
continue to scroll along and access a variety of links to forms and lots of helpful information and/or contact:

Fredonia Thompson at, 510-649-2400

The evening before, on Wednesday, the Graduate Theological Union Board of Trustees hosts a reception to honor the achievements of the graduating class.  The reception will be:

Date:          Wednesday, May 8, 2019
Time:          5:00 PM
Location:    CDSP (St. Margaret's Courtyard and Dennison Commons)
                    2451 Ridge Road
                    Berkeley, CA   94709

This is a lovely opportunity to gather with friends, family and the entire GTU community to celebrate the successes of the graduating class.  The evening features a program in which faculty advisors introduce their students to guests and describe their work and accomplishments.  This is an excellent opportunity to catch a glimpse into the amazing diversity of the GTU academic community!

For Information about the Trustees Reception contact:
The GTU Advancement Office,, 510-649-2531.

Commencement activities for each of the GTU's member schools will occur between May 18 and May 26. See this page for a full schedule, or visit the website of individual schools for further details. 

Here are links to important forms and documents:

Intent to Graduate Forms for Fall 2018

GTU Doctoral Student Statement of Intent to Graduate form Fall 2018 (due August 31, 2018)

Common MA Program Statement of Intent to Graduate form Fall 2018 (due August 31, 2018)

Intent to Graduate Forms for Spring 2019

GTU Doctoral Student Statement of Intent to Graduate form Spring 2019 (due January 15, 2019)

Common MA Program Statement of Intent to Graduate form Spring 2019 (due January 15, 2019)

Commencement Participation Forms Spring 2019

GTU Commencement Events RSVP and Participation Form Spring 2019 (due March 1, 2019)

Faculty Commencement Events RSVP and Participation Form (due March 8, 2019)

Other Information to come February 2019

All PhD, ThD, and common MA candidates planning to graduate in October or May of this academic year are required to submit an Intent to Graduate form by August 31 (fall graduates) or January 15 (spring graduates).  Click on the appropriate link above access the form.  If you missed the deadline and still haven’t submitted a form, please complete and submit it right away.

All of this year’s graduates and prospective graduates, the committee coordinator or advisor, or a faculty member who plans to fill in for the coordinator/advisor at Commencement activities (the reception and/or Commencement Exercises) must complete the GTU Commencement Events RSVP/Response Form.  This year’s deadline for this form for graduates is March 1, 2019.

For all the information you would ever want to have and/or know about, about this year’s Commencement, review the important documents. These files are all of the correspondence sent to the prospective graduates.

Use the GTU Commencement Participation Form to rent or borrow regalia and announcements. Make sure to consult the Cap and Gown Information for Graduates handout for information about how and where to order a customized GTU doctoral gown. Please note that rental regalia is always black with a standard mortar board for doctoral graduates. When purchasing regalia, graduates have a choice between a red robe with the velvet doctoral bars and the black robe with velvet doctoral bars. 

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me at or 510-649-2464 or Fredonia Thompson at or 510-649-2461.  Again, don’t forget to submit your Intent to Graduate and Commencement Participation forms! We will have more forms for you as part of the filing process. I look forward to celebrating you on Thursday, May 9!
Kathleen Kook, Ph.D. 
Dean of Students and Vice President for Student Affairs