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Te Rā Whakawhiwhi Tohu


Christchurch 2021 Spring Graduation
Friday 17 September
Christchurch Town Hall

Applications for 2021 students to graduate in person open via the Ara Student portal in early August and close on 24 August 2021.

Late applications will not be accepted.

To ensure your qualification is processed correctly all students eligible to graduate must indicate via the student portal if they will or will not be attending the graduation ceremony.

Department times for the ceremony/ies will not be confirmed until 23 August.

Graduation ceremonies only proceed if Canterbury remains at COVID Alert Level 1. For this reason, we recommend you make flexible travel arrangements.

Covid-affected graduates: If you had a graduation cancelled due to COVID in 2020, you can attend the ceremony on 17 September 2021. Covid-affected Graduates ONLY register at this link by 6 August 2021 to confirm your attendance.

Each attending student is allowed up to three tickets for guests.

For friends and family unable to attend your graduation, our ceremonies are streamed live on the Ara website.

Graduation guides

A graduation guide with all the information you need will be uploaded closer to the time, please keep checking back.

How to Graduate

Graduation regalia

As part of the formal graduation ceremony, Ara regalia is required. Regalia needs to be ordered directly from Graduate Women Canterbury (GWC) website.

Graduands are responsible for obtaining their own academic regalia and we encourage you to organise yours early to ensure availability. Academic regalia must be collected from the offices of Graduate Women Canterbury (located on the Dovedale Campus, corner of Dovedale & Solway Avenues) the day before the ceremony, and returned there as soon as possible after the ceremony.

The hiring of academic dress is a voluntary service provided by Graduate Women Canterbury who own and maintain the regalia for UC ceremonies. Please do not wear academic regalia in the rain.

Proceeds are used to finance GWC scholarships and awards to graduates and students and for charitable purposes.

Tips for on-the day:

  1. Graduation ceremonies are lengthy so please ensure you are well hydrated and have had something to eat prior, it’s easy to forget amid graduation pictures and getting ready.
  2. Ensure your camera and phone batteries are charged for those graduation photos! We will have a portrait photographer at the venue on the day – this and graduation teddies are a separate business from Ara but the information tables will be set-up in the foyer area for you to make any purchases.
  3. Go to the Bathroom! Go before you line up, chances are you’re going to be nervous, so try to go as often as you can before you have to be in your spot for the ceremony.
  4. Cap/Gown/Regalia. Make sure you don’t forget the most important part and ensure you arrive at the venue already dressed; no regalia bags are to be left back-of-house.
  5. Chewing gum. This might seem odd, but it’s especially helpful if you’re way down the list for crossing the stage. If you get strong, minty gum, it will help keep you awake and the peppermint will help with nerves.
  6. If you feel ill while you are seated in the venue, feel free to leave the building for fresh air and seek out one of our Ara marshals who can assist with chaperoning you outside, seeking medical aid or can sit with you until it is your time to cross the stage.

Christchurch Autumn Graduations

Watch the videos here >>

Timaru Autumn Graduation

Watch the video here >>