Browser warning

December Commencement

December Commencement

Saturday, Dec. 15, 2018
9:30 a.m.
Florida State Fairgrounds, Expo Hall

The ceremony will last approximately 1 hour 45 minutes depending upon the number of graduates who participate and the length of the speeches. In order to be included in the December commencement program, students must apply for graduation by Friday, Oct. 26.

Commencement Schedule

Thursday, Dec. 13, to Saturday, Dec. 15, 2018

THURSDAY, DEC. 13, 2018

Education Department - Graduate Hooding Ceremony

6–8 p.m.
Vaughn Center, Crescent Club

FRIDAY, DEC. 14, 2018

Interfaith Graduation Celebration

12 p.m.
Sykes Chapel and Center for Faith and Values (Campus Map)

The Interfaith Graduation Celebration is a multi-faith service planned by Better Together, The University of Tampa's student interfaith organization. The service consists of music, readings and prayers, as well as an address by an invited speaker. Graduates sit with their families for this service, and no academic regalia is worn by degree candidates.

A luncheon will be held immediately following the celebration. Please RSVP for the luncheon by Wednesday, Dec. 13.

For additional information please contact the Wellness Center at (813) 257-1877 or email

Health Sciences and Human Performance Department - Hooding Ceremony

12 p.m.
Plant Hall, Music Room

Nursing Department - Hooding and Pinning Ceremony

12 p.m.
Plant Hall, Grand Salon


Sykes College of Business - Graduate Awards and Hooding Ceremony

6 p.m.
Martinez Athletics Center

This event is a celebration of your achievement and is a compliment to the University's graduation ceremony the following day. Please remember to order and bring your graduation regalia to the Awards and Hooding Ceremony. Appetizers will be served prior to the program, which will start promptly at 7 p.m.

For additional information please contact the Office of Graduate and Continuing Studies at (813) 257-3514 or refer to

SATURDAY, DEC. 15, 2018

8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. University Bookstore will be open.
8 a.m. - 9 a.m.All graduates check in and seated for the ceremony.
9:30 a.m.Commencement ceremony will begin.

Live Stream

Live coverage of the ceremony allows our students to share this important event.
We are proud to bring you coverage of the December Commencement ceremony. Live coverage of the ceremony allows our students to share this important event with loved ones who normally would not be able to atte

Directions and Parking

The Florida State Fairgrounds is located on Highway 301 and parking is free.

The Florida State Fairgrounds is located at 4800 U.S. Highway 301 North in Tampa. From the University, travel on I-275 North toward I-4/Orlando and merge onto I-4 East via Exit 45B. Take Exit #7 (U.S. Hwy. 301 South) and stay in the right lane heading south for 1/4 mile. Turn right into the Fairgrounds entrance. Do NOT go past the light at Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard.

** Please note there is no fee for parking.**
***Please take proper precautions for Tampa traffic.***

Fairgrounds Map


The commencement ceremony is a celebration of the accomplishment.
This commencement ceremony is a celebration of the accomplishment of more than 500 graduates. Each of the graduates deserves the same recognition and honor from those in attendance. Please make your post-commencement plans with the understanding that you are expected to attend the ceremony in its entirety. The ceremony should last approximately 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 hours, depending on the length of the speeches and number of graduates.


Guests are encouraged to arrive early.

The doors to the Florida State Fairgrounds, Expo Hall will open for seating at 8 a.m. Guests are encouraged to arrive between 8:15 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. to ensure enough time to park and find seating. No tickets are required. Concessions will be open with food and beverages. All guests should be seated by 9 a.m. to ensure a prompt start of the ceremony.

Guests with Disabilities

Download/Print Commencement Guide for Visitors

Guests with disabilities should contact a UT Diplomat at the entrance to the seating area at the Florida State Fairgrounds, Expo Hall for assistance. Those needing assistance should provide their own wheelchair. Guests in wheelchairs will be seated in a special area. Special seating for guests with walking disabilities will be in the first row of each bleacher section. Because seating in these areas is limited, only one individual may sit with the guest who has special needs. Your cooperation is required in order to accommodate all of our guests with disabilities.

Hotel Accommodations

The host hotel for December Commencement.
The host hotel for the Dec. 15, 2018, commencement is Hilton Tampa Downtown. Parents and guests are urged to make reservations as soon as possible. Please identify yourself as an attendee of the UT 2018 December Commencement. Reservation requests received after the cut-off date will be based on availability at the hotel’s prevailing rates.

Contact Hilton Tampa Downtown at (813) 769-8300 or visit the reservation link by Nov. 20, 2018, or until the group block is sold out, whichever comes first.


There are several restaurants within the area of the commencement venue.
  • Mellow Mushroom, Pizza, Sandwiches/Subs, 10959 Causeway Blvd
  • Acropolis Greek Tavern,a Greek, Mediterranean, 6108 Winthrop Town Centre Ave.
  • The Cheesecake Factory, American, Bakery, Dessert, 781 Brandon Town Center Mall
  • Jo-To Japanese Steakhouse, Steakhouse, Japanese, Sushi, 905 S Lithia Pinecrest Rd
  • Stonewood Grill & Tavern, Seafood, Steakhouse, American, 612 E Bloomingdale Ave
  • Ichiban Buffet, Asian, Buffet, Sushi, 1721 W Brandon Blvd
  • Tandoor Indian Cuisine, Indian, Eastern European, Salad, 805 E Brandon Blvd
  • Shrimp Boat Grill, Seafood, American, Steakhouse, 1020 Bloomingdale Ave
  • Sumatra Bistro Café & Bakery, Bakery, Sandwiches/Subs, Organic, 1602 Oakfield
  • Dr Ryuu Japanese Steakhouse, Japanese, Steakhouse, Sushi 773 Brandon Town Center
  • Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza, Pizza, Italian, 1912 W. Brandon Blvd
  • Carrabba's Italian Grill, Italian, Seafood, Steakhouse, 801 Providence Rd
  • Romano's Greek & Italian Cuisine, Greek, Italian, Salad, 901 W Brandon Blvd
  • Bonefish Grill, American, 1015 Providence Rd
  • Longhorn Steakhouse, American, Steakhouse, 11102 Causeway Blvd
  • Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Burgers, Hot Dogs/Sausages, Fast Food, 459 Brandon Town Center Mall
  • California Pizza Kitchen, Pizza, Sandwiches/Subs, California, 827 Brandon Town Center
  • Mimi's Cafe, French, International, Breakfast, 804 Providence Rd
  • Lemon Grass, Thai Kitchen Thai, Asian, 11106 Bloomingdale Avenue
  • Einstein Bros. Bagels, Bagels, Coffee, Breakfast, 660 W Brandon Blvd
  • Smokey Bones, Bar & Fire Grill Barbecue, American, Burgers, 136 Brandon Town Center Dr
  • Tres Amigos Cantina, Mexican, American, Vegetarian, 2025 W Brandon Blvd
  • Cracker Barrel, American, Breakfast, 1880 Sr-60 E
  • Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Burgers, Fast Food, Hot Dogs/Sausages, 6022 Winthrop Town Centre Ave
  • Panera Bread, American, Dessert, Bakery, 459 Brandon Town Center
  • Brandon Bagels, Bagels, Breakfast, Kosher, 942 W. Brandon Blvd
  • Moe's Southwest Grill, Tex-Mex, Mexican, 6020 Winthrop Town Center Avenue
  • Beef O'Brady's, Burgers, Pub Food, Sandwiches/Subs, 210 S Kings Ave
  • Kobe Japanese Steakhouse, Japanese, Sushi, Steakhouse, 2210 W Brandon Blvd
  • Zaxby's, American, Fast Food, 2028 Florida 60
  • Marco's Pizza, Pizza, Sandwiches/Subs, 811 E. Brandon Blvd
  • Brass Tap, 775 Brandon Town Center Square 1
  • Burgers & Bar, Burgers, American, Vegetarian, 2042 Badlands Dr
  • Steak 'n Shake, Fast Food, American, Burgers, 10131 Bloomingdale Avenue
  • Outback Steakhouse, Steakhouse, American, Seafood, 2020 W Brandon Blvd
  • Buffalo Wild Wing, American, Burgers, Sandwiches/Subs, 2055 Badlands Dr


Contact Orientation and Family Engagement.
If you need additional information, please email us at or call Orientation and Family Engagement at (813) 257-1999. We will be pleased to answer questions and provide assistance whenever possible.