Weather Contingency Plans

With the worsening weather forecast for this weekend’s Commencement events, we wanted to share a few details about Villanova University’s severe weather (thunder, lightning and heavy rain) plans.

University Commencement Ceremony

The University Commencement on Friday, May 18, will be held at 4 p.m., rain or shine. In response to feedback received from graduates and families about the importance of College Convocations, Friday’s Commencement ceremony will not be moved to Saturday, May 19, in the event of severe weather conditions.

In the case of severe weather, the Commencement ceremony will still take place at 4 p.m. on Friday, but will be moved to Jake Nevin Field House for everyone's safety. This decision regarding location will be made by 2 p.m. on Friday and communicated via Commencement text alerts, a message on the Villanova University homepage, and at 610-519-4505 and 610-519-8882.

If the ceremony is moved indoors, attendance in the Field House will be limited to the academic stage party and the graduating students due to fire safety regulations and max occupancy codes. Simulcasts of the ceremony will be available for family and friends in the following locations:

  • Connelly Center Cinema
  • Connelly Center Belle Aire Terrace
  • Villanova School of Law Commons
  • Bartley Hall Exchange
  • Bartley Hall Room numbers 1001, 1010, 1047, 2001, 2010, 3001, 3010
  • Driscoll Hall: Room numbers 132, 134, 221, 227, 240, 240, 246, 248

President’s Reception for Graduates and Guests

The President's Reception for Graduates and Guests following the Commencement ceremony will be held on Friday regardless of weather conditions. The reception is held in the Connelly Center and begins at 6 p.m. All graduates and families are invited to attend. Light food and beverages will be served.

College Convocations

The College Convocations will be held on Saturday, May 19, rain or shine. If there is severe weather on Saturday, indoor receptions for each College will be held in place of the College Convocations. These informal receptions will allow graduates and their guests to gather with their respective College communities and share in the celebration with photos and refreshments. The decision for all College Convocations will be made and communicated by 7 a.m. on Saturday morning.

If moved indoors, the schedule and locations for the College receptions on Saturday will be as follows:

  • 8 a.m.— 9:30 a.m.:     College of Professional Studies, Vasey Hall
  • 9 a.m.— 10:30 a.m.     College of Nursing, Driscoll Hall
  • 9 a.m. — 10:30 a.m.    College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Undergraduate), Connelly Center
  • 10 a.m. — 11:30 a.m.   College of Engineering, CEER
  • 10 a.m. — 11:30 a.m.   Villanova School of Business (Undergraduate), Bartley Hall
  • 2 p.m. — 3:30 p.m.       College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Graduate), Connelly Center
  • 2 p.m.— 3:30 p.m.        Villanova School of Business (Graduate), Bartley Hall

Baccalaureate Mass

The Baccalaureate Mass is scheduled to take place Saturday, May 19 at 4 p.m. in the Campus Green. If weather conditions require, the Baccalaureate Mass will be held in Jake Nevin Field House. Graduates and families will be notified of this change by 2 p.m. on Saturday. Seating will be first come, first served for all graduates and guests. Once capacity is reached in Jake Nevin, simulcast viewing will be available in Driscoll Hall along with distribution of the Eucharist. As a reminder, any changes due to severe weather will be communicated via Commencement text alerts, a message on the Villanova University homepage, and at 610-519-4505 and 610-519-8882.

A Note to Graduates and Parents

In planning for this year’s Commencement, we considered numerous options and locations—both on and off campus—knowing that the Finneran Pavilion would not be available. After a great deal of planning and discussion that included students, faculty, staff and alumni, it was decided that Commencement should remain on campus.

In the event of severe weather, we had originally planned to move Commencement from Friday to Saturday. However, given the feedback we received from graduates and families earlier this week, we adjusted our plans to address their concerns and worked quickly to find a different solution. While perhaps not ideal, the move to Jake Nevin Field House on Friday along with the individual College receptions on Saturday allows us to celebrate our graduates, and for graduates to celebrate with family, faculty and friends.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we continue to monitor the weather. Please know that making this weekend a wonderful experience for our graduates is our number one priority and we will do everything possible to make it memorable.

Congratulations to the Class of 2018!

University Commencement Ceremony Video

Visit this link to view an archived webcast of the 2017 University Commencement Ceremony. Having trouble playing the video stream? Please confirm that your computer/mobile device meets the viewing requirements.


In addition, the video of the University Commencement Ceremony and each College Convocation will be available for viewing on the University's YouTube channel and available for download via ITunesU.


Future Commencement Weekend Dates

Year 2019: May 17-18
Year 2020: May 15-16
Year 2021: May 14-15

Time to Graduate?

Review the Prospective Graduate Information and Checklist