Severe Weather Plan

With inclement weather potentially in the forecast on Monday, May 18, Wake Forest University commencement organizers encourage graduates and their families to pay special attention to the severe weather plan.

University leaders will continue to monitor conditions and will make every attempt to hold the commencement ceremony outside on Hearn Plaza. In the event of some rain, commencement exercises may still continue outdoors on Hearn Plaza. Ponchos will be available for graduates, but guests are encouraged to bring their own rain gear and plan accordingly.

If weather predictions suggest a threat to safety or conditions that prevent Wake Forest from holding commencement outside, the University will announce a move to the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Sunday evening.

This decision would be communicated via email to students, faculty and staff; on the homepage of the commencement website (; on the University’s homepage (; via social media; on a voicemail message at 336.758.7059; and via local media (including Winston-Salem Journal, WXII 12, WGHP Fox 8, WFMY 2 and Spectrum News Triad 14).

If the severe weather plan is put into effect, Commencement will begin at 9:30 a.m. in Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Graduates must be at the Coliseum by 8:30 a.m. The order of the ceremony will be the same as that of the outdoor ceremony. Undergraduates will receive diplomas onstage. Graduate and professional students will receive diplomas at the same locations noted in the Commencement Schedule.