Winston-Salem State University

Commencement Ceremony

Friday, May 19, 2017 9:45 a.m. Bowman Gray Stadium

Tickets are not required to attend the 2017 Commencement.

The commencement ceremony is a formal ceremony that is held in recognition of all current graduates.  This ceremony includes a graduate and faculty processional, a commencement address, a charge to the graduates, and special presentations.

The commencement exercises will begin with the graduates processional at 9:45 a.m. and are anticipated to end at 12:00 p.m.

Commencement Parking & Shuttle Service

Parking will not be permitted in the businesses around the stadium. There will be no parking on the streets around the stadium which include Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Williamson Street and Argonne Street. These no parking zones will be monitored and cars parked there will be subject to being ticketed or towed.

Handicapped parking will be in the Bowman Gray South Lot. Signs will be posted for your convenience.

Guest parking is free. There will be restrictions that will allow "only right turns" to access the parking lots.

Guests traveling north on Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive will park in the East Lot at the stadium. Once that lot is filled, guests will be directed to the overflow areas which are, in order to be filled, Lots O, P, Q, E and F (see campus map for locations).

Guests traveling south on Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive will park in the West Lot at the stadium which will be accessed by Williamson Street. Once that lot is filled, guests will be directed to the overflow areas which are, in order to be filled, Lots, Y, Z, DD, CC, B, C and A (see campus map for locations)

If there is a need for overflow parking beyond the campus, parking will be available at Reynolds Park picnic area on the left side of Reynolds Park Road before the golf course and at Emanuel Baptist Church, 1075 Shalimar Drive which is off Reynolds Park Road.

There will be signs to direct you to the closest available lot for parking.

Guest should look for shuttle stops at the front of each lot. The shuttle buses will start at 7:00 a.m. on the morning of Commencement.  They will pick passengers up at bus shelters as well as people walking in the parking lot at the Anderson Center.  The shuttle buses will not stop on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive.  They will  continue running until the event is completed and everyone has cleared the stadium. 

After Commencement is over, Police will be directing all traffic that’s parked in the South and West Lots to turn right from Williamson St. onto MLK going South. All traffic coming out of the East Lot and Argonne St. will be directed to turn right going North onto MLK. All traffic coming out of Anderson Center at Reynolds Park Rd will be directed to turn left onto MLK going North. Please follow Police directions to ensure smooth and safe traffic flow. It will speed up the time it takes to leave the stadium.

Handicap Parking & Seating

Disability access will be available for graduates with accessible parking located in Bowman Gray South Lot.  Signs will be posted for your convenience.

Accessible seating for persons with impaired mobility will be available in the stadium in the two street level patios and the top two rows of the stadium general admission seating throughout the stadium. Seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Seating

There will be an interpreter for the deaf and hard of hearing position on the stage. Seating for the deaf and hard of hearing will be located in the reserved seating section (red seats) of the stadium.

Inclement Weather

Inclement weather is always a possibility so arrangements have been made to move Commencement to Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum if necessary. Should that happen, a broadcast email will be sent to all students, faculty and staff; a recorded message will be placed on the University Weather Line (336-750-3456); and information will be posted on the WSSU website, Facebook page and Twitter.

Official Photographer

An official photographer will be on site. Gradimages will be taking photographs of all graduates at the Commencement Ceremony. They will be located on the field as you exit the stage. You may pre-register your information prior to the ceremony at their website,, or you may order photographs after the ceremony either online or by call 800-261-2576. By registering early, photo samples will be provided to you as soon as they are available after the event and you can get a $5 off coupon on orders of $25 or more.

Winston-Salem State University

601 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive

Winston-Salem, NC 27110

Phone: (336) 750-2000

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