Spring 2019 Commencement Ceremony

Date: Friday, May 10, 2019
Thompson-Boling Arena

Welcome to the College of Law’s official Commencement site. The information presented here pertains only to graduation ceremonies for the College of Law.

Speaker Information

The May 2019 distinguished guest speaker will be announced in Spring 2019.


Thompson-Boling Arena is located at the corner of Neyland Drive and Lake Loudoun Drive in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Enter the arena from the stairs entrance on Philip Fulmer Way. Proceed to the arena floor. Once inside, send your guests to their seats, then proceed directly to the Ray Mears Room. Directions from various airports can be found here.

Hotel Accommodations

At the hotels below, blocks of rooms have been secured for reservations for family and friends of the graduates. Rooms for all properties are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Once rooms held at the special rate are reserved or the cut-off deadline is past, rates will return to regular prices. Last year, most downtown hotels were booked by mid-February for UT graduation dates. More information.

Parking and Security

Parking will be available in university student parking areas throughout the campus. Please avoid parking in staff parking areas. For a parking map online please go to: You may also refer to parking and pedestrian maps to get the most up to date information regarding road closures and construction.

The arena’s large-event security protocol will be enforced at both ceremonies. Guests may enter the arena with one clear plastic bag no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches.

The only other items ALLOWED in the arena are:

  • Small clutch purses no larger than 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches
  • Mobile phones
  • Binoculars, cameras, and video cameras (without cases)
  • Diapers and non-medically necessary items for babies and young children (must be carried in a clear bag)
  • Medically necessary items that must be carried in a specific bag, sized proportionately to its contents.
  • Umbrella strollers

The following items are PROHIBITED inside the arena:

  • Non-clear bags of any size
  • Diaper bags
  • Backpacks ( of any size)
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Cans, bottles, coolers
  • Outside food, snacks, beverages
  • Open umbrellas
  • Selfie sticks
  • Unmanned aircraft
  • Large bags or parcels, including backpacks and purses
  • Weapons, including pocket knives
  • Hoverboards
  • Segways
  • Artificial noisemakers
  • Large travel strollers
  • Smoking, including e-cigarettes, is prohibited inside the arena at all times.

For more information on the security policy, contact the Thompson-Boling Arena management office at 865-974-0953.

Guest seating

No tickets or RSVPs are required for guests at the ceremony. Unlimited seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The facilities will be opened one hour before the ceremony begins.

Seating for individuals with disabilities and their families will be available on the floor of Thompson Boling Arena in non-reserved rows. Wheelchairs will not be available at the Arena.


As a courtesy to all in attendance, guests should refrain from advancing to the front of the stage to take photos. A professional photographer will be taking photos of students on stage with the dean. Another photographer will photograph students individually as they leave the stage. After the ceremony, the dean and faculty will be available in the stage area for additional graduate and guest photo opportunities.

Disability Accommodations

The University of Tennessee encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities.

Additional Details for Graduates

Cap, gown, and hood

Only those students dressed in proper academic regalia (cap, gown, and hood) will be allowed to participate. Graduates are responsible for ordering regalia through the UT Bookstore Graduation Supplies website. To order, click here or call the Graduation Counter at 974-3459. Please contact the Volshop’s Graduate Counter (865-974-3459) for additional information.


Commencement will take place at the Thompson-Boling Arena and will begin at 3:30 p.m. All graduates must check in at the Ray Mears Room upon arrival no later than 2:30 p.m. and receive a name card. Students must have their name cards with them at all times until they reach the stage.

All cell phones must be turned off or set to silent as soon as you enter the seating area. Please refrain from cell phone use before and during the ceremony. Any student suspected to be under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance will be subject to arrest and will not be allowed to participate in the ceremony. Smoking is strictly prohibited inside Thompson-Boling Arena.

Staging and hooding

Name cards provided to students in the Ray Mears Room will be used throughout the commencement ceremony. At the top of the stairs, students will hand name cards to the marshal and wait for their name to be announced, then proceed on stage to be hooded and congratulated by the dean.

Only students possessing a name card will be allowed to cross the stage.


After being hooded, students should return to their designated seating area and remain seated until the conclusion of the ceremony. Once the ceremony has been adjourned, students may meet their guests and make their departure from the arena.

Representatives of the VolShop will be available in the Ray Mears Room in the Thompson Boling Arena to collect regalia.

Contact Teresa Peterson or Amber Turner in the Business Office, Suite 265, 974-4263, with any questions.