Commencement Staffing FAQs

    When and where is commencement?

    GGC celebrates graduates during three commencement ceremonies each year.

    Find detailed information on #GGCgrad.

    Parking for the ceremony?

    Convenient parking is available at the arena: Gas South Arena parking.

    Responsibilities for commencement staffing?

    Orientation, training and rehearsal attendance prepare you with everything you need, like assignment requirements and where to report. After you sign up, commencement staff coordinators provide details about your assignments, email calendar invites and answer any remaining questions.

    • Orientation and training (on campus), about an hour, 1-2 weeks prior to the ceremony – multiple dates will be offered, but you only need to attend one training session.
    • Rehearsal attendance at the scheduled venue, 1-2 hours, the day before the ceremony – wear comfortable shoes. Also, ushers meet with their zone leaders and to tour zones as a group.
    • Ceremony staffing, 5-8 hours, morning check-in 2 hours before ceremony begins.

    Ushers receive zone assignments and are paired with a zone leader. Expect your zone information approximately one week before commencement.

    Please remain flexible, as zone and post assignments may change at the last minute.

    Arrival? Reporting? After commencement concludes?

    Training and rehearsal attendance provide opportunities to get answers to all of your questions, and email invites sent by the commencement staffing coordinator serve as convenient reminders with dates, times and locations.

    When do I arrive?

    GGC staff: If commencement begins at 9 a.m., arrive no later than 7 a.m. Selected staff will be asked to arrive at 6:30 a.m., or earlier if necessary. If commencement begins at 10 a.m., arrive no later than 8 a.m. Selected staff will be asked to arrive at 7:30 a.m., or earlier if necessary.

    GGC students/student assistants: If commencement begins at 9 a.m., arrive no later than 7 a.m. If commencement begins at 10 a.m., arrive no later than 8 a.m.

    When do I assume my post?

    All commencement staff will assume their posts at 7:30 a.m., if the ceremony is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.; and 8:30 a.m., if the ceremony is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Remain within your assigned area until the ceremony concludes. Please note that not all posts will have a view of the ceremony.

    What do I do when the ceremony is over?

    After the ceremony, commencement staff scan their areas for lost/found items, and return “STAFF” lanyards and 2-way radios (if applicable). After your duties have been completed, you’re free to feel valued and appreciated – and should expect to leave by approximately 1 p.m.

    Attire? What should I wear?

    Attire during the ceremony should be appropriate business apparel.

    • White shirt (collared for men)
    • Black or dark colored pants, skirt or dress
    • GGC name tag (if you have one)
    • “STAFF” lanyard and a venue information card (issued at ceremony check-in)

    Breaks during the ceremony?

    Commencement staff are entitled to a reasonable rest break.

    • If you need a break while on duty, please ask for assistance to cover your post. Ushers should notify your zone leader.
    • Keep in mind that you may not receive an opportunity to sit down for long periods while on duty or be able to view the ceremony.

    Special needs support for guests with disabilities?

    GGC Disability Services staff will be on site to address any disability-related needs. Wheelchair seating is available all around the upper part of the Gas South Arena.

    There will be a reserved seating area for guests needing interpreter services. Family members may be seated with hearing-impaired guests in this area.

    Safety procedures in case of an emergency?

    Please read and become familiar with the Emergency and Safety Procedures for Commencement (provided via email from a staffing coordinator). There will be a safety briefing during your training session.

    Refreshments for commencement staff?

    Coffee and water will be available at the ceremony for commencement staff. Otherwise, we recommend you eat a good breakfast before arriving the morning of the ceremony.

    What else do I need to know?


    • Familiarize yourself with the location of restrooms, first aid, emergency exits, program distribution points and water stations.
    • Give lost and found items to GGC Public Safety officers.
    • Return “STAFF” lanyards and 2-way radios (if applicable) to the check-in station when your duties are completed.
    • Smile at your fellow commencement staffers, often, and remember to maintain a pleasant, enthusiastic attitude of helpfulness and concern at all times for graduates and their guests on their very special day.


    • Encourage guests to fill the rows from the center, outward.
    • Direct guests with large balloon bouquets or other large items to sit at the back of sections to minimize obstructed views. 
    • Noisemakers are not allowed.
    • Direct VIPs wearing GGC issued green name badges to reserved seating. VIP seating may be assigned to specific individuals and are indicated by stickers on the backs of the chairs.