Commencement Information

About Commencement

Holyoke Community College's Sixty-Ninth Commencement ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 17, 2017, from 10:00 a.m. to noon, at the MassMutual Center in Springfield. Graduates arrive at the Mass Mutual Center between 8:30 AM - 9:00 AM. Only graduates are permitted in the 
graduate check-in area. You will be greeted by signs and staff members directing you to graduate check in. There you will receive your envelope containing a tassel and a name card. Hang the tassel on your cap (right side), and 
keep your name card to give to the reader when you walk across the stage.

The Civic Center Parking Garage is located directly across from the MassMutual Center on Falcons Way and is $7.00 cash only. The flat outdoor lot is next to the garage, cash only, and the fee varies. Columbus Avenue South Garage is located on Columbus Avenue two blocks from the MassMutual Center. Accessible parking is available for those with HP placards. Street parking is available as well. 

Video Streaming

Commencement will be live-streamed again this year, so that those who cannot attend can watch the ceremony. This link will take you to the video of that stream.

Highlights of Commencement

2016 Elaine Marieb Faculty Chair for Teaching Excellence
Founded in 1991 by Elaine Marieb, HCC professor of anatomy and physiology, this award recognizes a full-time faculty member (with five or more years of service) who exemplifies outstanding classroom teaching and the professional development, skills, and dedication to student learning that HCC faculty bring to the classroom. This year's Marieb Chair will be announced at the end of May. 

Student Speakers and Performers
Each year, the college chooses two graduates to address the graduating class at the ceremony and one student performer. These individuals are chosen from all applicants to represent the journey of the graduates and the potential for their future. Any student eligible for graduation is encouraged to apply by clicking here or picking up a form in Donahue 103 or Frost 224. 

Distinguished Service Awards
Each year, the college recognizes the achievements of individuals whose dedication and outstanding service to HCC have enhanced the value of the undergraduate experience and improved the quality of life for all on campus. 

Profiles of Excellence
Each year we put faces to the HCC tag-line "Futures Inspired" through "Profiles of Excellence," a series of student profiles that we send to the local media to showcase the diversity and excellence of our graduates.

HCC recognizes those who have earned a perfect 4.0 GPA (grade point average) with the title of valedictorian.

GradImages will photograph each graduate as s/he walks across the stage and receives a diploma. Graduates will receive a color proof by mail from GradImages, with no obligation to order. For questions or to place orders, contact them at or (800) 424-3686.

Diplomas for January and May graduates will be mailed on or around June 9. Diplomas for summer graduates will be mailed shortly after August 27.  We must have an accurate mailing address for your diploma! Check your address at your HCC online services account. If you need to make changes, submit them in writing to us by mail to the Student Records Office or in person at the Student Records Office (Frost 221). Be sure to include "2016 graduate" at the top. Updates must be completed by May 20, 2016. Diplomas may not be mailed to students with outstanding obligations to HCC (parking tickets, library books, fines, etc.), so please take care of these in advance! 

Questions? Contact College Affairs Committee Chair Elizabeth Golen at




Holyoke Community College
303 Homestead Ave. Holyoke, MA 01040