Spring Commencement 2023

Saturday, May 13, 2023 - 3:30pm

Carmichael Arena

About the event

The UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media will hold its departmental spring commencement ceremony at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 13, 2023, in Carmichael Arena.

No tickets are required, and there is no limit for attendees. Graduates are welcome to invite as many family members and friends as they wish.

Watch a livestream of the event here.

Rochelle Riley '81, director of arts and culture for the City of Detroit, will give the UNC Hussman keynote address. Previously, Riley worked as a columnist for the Detroit Free Press for nearly 20 years where she was a leading voice on government responsibility, education, race and children's issues. In 1980, her debut column for The Courier-Journal of Louisville, Kentucky, helped spur that city's efforts to build the Muhammad Ali Center. Riley's work has been recognized with a 2011 Will Rogers Humanitarian Award by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and the 2017 Ida B. Wells Award from the National Association of Black Journalists. She was inducted into the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame in 2016 and the NC Media & Journalism Hall of Fame in 2019. She was also part of the team that won a Local Reporting Pulitzer Prize in 2009 for coverage of the fall of then Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

Learn more about Riley here.

Graduates, families and friends are invited to a reception with Dean Raul Reis, faculty and staff at Carroll Hall following the ceremony from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Graduates can pick up UNC Hussman goody bags at the reception while supplies last.

The University’s commencement ceremony will be held in Kenan Stadium at 9 a.m. on Sunday, May 14, 2023. More information on the University ceremony is available at commencement.unc.edu.

Information for graduating students

Graduates should arrive at Woollen Gymnasium at 300 South Road (adjacent to Carmichael Arena) no later than 2:45 p.m. on Saturday, May 13.

Enter Woollen from South Road and go downstairs from the lobby to the basketball courts to check in and line up for the processional. UNC Hussman faculty and staff will be there to direct you.

When you check in at Woollen Gymnasium, UNC Hussman staff will give you a name card. If there is any potential that your name could be mispronounced, please write your name phonetically on the name card and talk with Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies Charlie Tuggle at the check-in table.


At 3:30 p.m., the processional will begin. Graduates will walk indoors from Woollen Gymnasium into Carmichael Arena and down through the seating area to the floor. Faculty marshals will guide the processional and direct you to your seats.

Once you are seated, it is strongly recommended that you text your family what row you are seated in on the floor at Carmichael Arena. Graduates will not be seated in alphabetical order, so letting your family know which row you are in will help make sure they don’t miss your moment crossing the stage.

Faculty marshals will prompt you when your row is to move toward the stage for your name to be called.

As you step onto the stage, you will hand your name card to Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies Charlie Tuggle (undergraduates) or Senior Associate Dean for Graduate Studies Heidi Hennink-Kaminski (graduate students) and walk to center stage where you will be greeted by Dean Raul Reis. (If you misplace your card, you will be stopped before going on stage, and you will need to fill out a new card before crossing the stage.)

You will return to your seat for the remainder of the ceremony after walking across stage.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, graduates will process out of the arena as directed by the faculty marshals.

After the ceremony, please instruct your guests to meet you outside of Carmichael Arena — as the crowd for the ceremony immediately following our ceremony will be entering the facility. Lingering in the lobby causes significant congestion and can be a hazard, particularly for guests with disabilities

Parking, seating and other information

Pre-ceremony and crowd control: There is another ceremony immediately before ours. Families and friends attending the UNC Hussman ceremony will wait outside of Carmichael Arena until the doors are opened prior to our ceremony. When the other ceremony is over, those attendees will be exiting as our attendees are entering. This can cause traffic flow issues, so families and friends should be prepared to contend with large crowds converging.

Wheelchair and disability entrance: Guests in wheelchairs and those with limited mobility should try to arrive at Carmichael Arena before the ceremony and look for signage marking the wheelchair and disability entrance. UNC Hussman staff will be present to direct you into the arena.

Disability seating: Carmichael Arena has accessible seating along the walkway between the lower and upper seating areas of the arena. (View a seating chart for Carmichael Arena.) UNC Hussman staff will be present to direct guests to disability seating. We ask that companions defer to guests in wheelchairs for space in the disability seating areas until the start of the ceremony. Space permitting, only one companion may join in that area. Seating for additional family members and friends will be reserved on the seating rows immediately below the accessible seating areas.

Disability parking: Disability parking spaces will be available in the UNC School of Government parking deck off of South Road.

General seating: No tickets are required for the ceremony, and guests will select their seats on first come, first served basis. (View a seating chart for Carmichael Arena.)

Duration of ceremony: The ceremony generally lasts 1.5 to 2 hours. Concession stands will not be open in Carmichael Arena, so water bottles are highly recommended for both guests and graduates.

Post-ceremony and exiting the arena: Graduates will process out of the arena at the conclusion of the ceremony. Please exit Carmichael Arena promptly following our ceremony as guests attending the ceremony following ours will be entering at the same time.

For more information

For other questions or concerns, please contact the staff at the Undergraduate Hub at (919) 962-6657 or hussmanhub@unc.edu.