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Ph.D. Hooding Ceremony

Hooding Ceremony for 2019-20 and 2020-21 Ph.D. Graduates

The Graduate School will hold a hooding ceremony at Duke Chapel on Saturday, September 25, 2021, for 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 Ph.D. graduates, whose hooding ceremonies had to be canceled at the time of their graduation due to the pandemic. More details will be sent to those cohorts and posted here soon.

Note: The September 25 ceremony is only for graduates who finished their Ph.D. before May 2021. Students who graduate in Summer/September 2021, December 2021, or May 2022 will be invited to participate in a hooding ceremony in May 2022. 


Registration links were sent to members of the 2019-20 and 2020-21 Ph.D. cohorts on July 26.


  • The link for reserving regalia rental is in the RSVP email. You must reserve your rental by August 20.
  • Rented regalia can be picked up at the Bryan Center on Friday, September 24, until 7:00 p.m., and on Saturday, September 25, starting at 8:00 a.m. They must be returned to the Bryan Center by 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 26.
  • To purchase regalia to keep, email Patti Silver ( at Duke Stores no later than August 6.

COVID Guidelines for September Ceremony

  • Public health conditions can change on short notice. See the university's coronavirus response page for the latest guidance updates.
  • Duke University strongly encourages all visitors to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to arriving on campus.
  • Individuals who are not vaccinated will be required to wear masks in all Duke buildings.  Per the university's July 28 guidance, all individuals will be required to wear masks in all Duke buildings until further notice due to the recent COVID surge.
  • Do not come to campus if you have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 and
    • you have been tested for COVID-19 in the last 48 hours and not yet received the results;
    • you have been exposed to anyone in the last 48 hours who has tested positive for COVID-19; or
    • you do not feel well.

If you have questions about the September hooding ceremony, please contact Sondra Ponzi (


The Hooding

hoodingThe hooding ceremony is similar to a graduation in that faculty and students are dressed in academic attire. During the ceremony, the name of each graduate is called, and the graduate goes on stage with his or her faculty adviser(s). The adviser places the doctoral hood over the head of the graduate, signifying his or her success in completing the graduate program, and the dean of The Graduate School then congratulates the graduate.

Each doctoral candidate is asked to invite a Duke faculty member to perform the hooding. The faculty member may be the candidate’s adviser or another faculty member of the candidate’s choice. If a faculty member is not available, the dean will perform the hooding.

VIDEO: Recipe for the Perfect Hooding


Past Ph.D. Graduation Celebrations