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December Graduation Information for Family and Friends 

GRADUATION INFORMATION
The December Graduation will be held on Tuesday, December 17, 2013 at 6:45 p.m., at the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium. 

TICKETS
Based on our growing numbers of graduates annually and as a result the growing numbers of guests, the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium is now requiring that guests have a ticket to enter.

  • Graduation tickets will all be General Admission seating. 
  • Each graduate will be issued six tickets.
  • Lost tickets cannot be replaced. 
  • All persons attending MUST have a ticket.

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CEREMONY INFORMATION

  • Family members and guests of the degree candidates with tickets will enter the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium at the main entrance, located on Church Street.
  • The doors to the auditorium will open 2 hours prior to the convocation.
  • Families and guests are urged to be seated approximately 1 hour before the beginning of the ceremony as the ceremony begins at 6:45 p.m.
  • Programs will be handed out by student marshals who will be located at each entrance to the auditorium.
  • During the ceremony, we ask that guests remain in their seat and to keep the aisles clear.
  • At the conclusion of the ceremony, family members, guests and degree candidates should remain at their seat until the recessional of the platform party, University faculties, and graduates is complete.

PARKING
The Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium offers ample free parking in the lot behind the auditorium itself. There is also a large free parking lot located across from the auditorium off of N. Church Street. Degree candidates, family members and guests should designate a place to meet after the ceremonies.

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DIRECTIONS
The Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium is located 5 miles off I-85 at 385 North Church Street next to Wofford College. For detailed directions, please click here.

Address
Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium
385 N. Church St.
Spartanburg, S.C. 29303
864.582.8107

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DISABILITY SERVICES
Family members or guests who have special needs, including mobility impairments due to health conditions, or unable to walk moderate distances may be dropped off at the front entrance of the Auditorium, on N. Church Street or down at the Arena entrance (lower lever) for elevator service. The driver of the vehicle should park in an adjacent parking lot.

  • Seating for family members and guests with special needs will be available in the handicapped seating sections.
  • No prior arrangements are required to secure seating in this area.
  • One companion may accompany those guests sitting in this special seating area; however, anyone who plans to utilize this area is encouraged to call the auditorium at 864-582-8107.
  • Event marshals will be present to direct these guests to the nearest accessible seating.

PLEASE NOTE that there are 17 first come, first served wheelchair spaces available in the Auditorium. It is also important to note that the balcony of the Auditorium can only be accessed by stairs. If you have family members requiring the use of a wheelchair space, please be sure to have them arrive early as these spaces fill up quickly.

Sign language interpreting will be provided for the hearing-impaired. The interpreter will be positioned on the platform.

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PUBLIC FACILITIES
First Aid services and handicapped accessible restrooms are available both on campus and at the Auditorium. In case of an emergency, EMS will be on site and University Police will be available to assist you.

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ALMA MATER
When the Chancellor closes the December convocation following the awarding of the degrees, the audience is asked to rise for the singing of the first verse only of the Alma Mater. The words of the song were penned by Professor George Wauchope of the English Department in 1911 and were adopted in 1912 and are printed in the commencement program. The tune is that of Flow Gently, Sweet Afton. "Here's a health, Carolina!" is a phrase which is repeated in Carolina's Alma Mater. Over the years, the custom has arisen of raising the right hand, with the fingers cupped, when the phrase "Here's a health, Carolina!", occurs, as if offering a toast. The Alma Mater is always sung with heads uncovered.

We hail thee, Carolina, and sing thy high praise;
With loyal devotion, rememb'ring the days,
When proudly we sought thee, thy children to be;
Here's a health, Carolina, forever to thee!
 

Since pilgrims of learning, we entered thy walls
And found dearest comrades in thy classic halls;
We've honored and loved thee, as sons faithfully;
Here's a health, Carolina, forever to thee!
 

Generations of sons have rejoiced to proclaim
Thy watchword of service, thy beauty and fame
For ages to come shall their rallying cry be;
Here's a health, Carolina, forever to thee!
 

Fair shrine of high honor and truth, thou shalt still
Blaze forth as a beacon, thy mission fulfill;
And be crowned by all hearts in a new jubilee;
Here's a health, Carolina, forever to thee!
 

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ACCOMODATIONS
Please visit the Spartanburg Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) for detailed information on accommodations, restaurants and maps. The CVB is located at 298 Magnolia Street in Spartanburg. You may wish to call the Visitor Center (864) 594-5050 or 1-800-374-8326, or visit their web site. Download the USC Upstate Visitor's Guide (pdf) 

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PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER
Professional photographers will photograph each degree candidate as he/she is greeted by Chancellor Stockwell. Complimentary photograph proofs will be sent to the degree candidate at his/her permanent address approximately 30 working days after the commencement/convocation exercises. Additional photographs may be purchased upon receipt of the proof.

No prior arrangements are necessary for this service; all degree candidates will be photographed during the ceremony. There is absolutely no obligation to purchase any photographs. Families and guests will not be permitted on the event floor during the ceremonies.

There will also be a professional photographer available to take still cap and gown photographs of the degree candidates on this special day. This photographer will be located in the lobby of the Auditorium’s Arena for December Convocation from 4:00 - 5:30 p.m. For more information, contact Grad Images at 1-800-261-2576 or visit their website at www.gradimages.com.

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VIDEOS

Professional, multi-camera commemorative videos that will include the individual recognition of each degree candidate, will be available for purchase through Media Services. For more information, or to order, you may wish to call 864-503-5564.

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More Information

If you have any questions regarding the commencement exercises or the convocation, you may wish to call the University Registrar's Office at 864-503-5220, visit the Office of the University Registrar's web site or read the graduation Frequently Asked Questions online.

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