Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

New time announced for 2010 Spring Commencement

U-M has moved the start time of the May 1 commencement to 11 a.m. — an hour later than previously planned — to allow the necessary time for all participants to get through added security that will be in place at Michigan Stadium. The university announced Feb. 10 that President Barack Obama will deliver the commencement address and receive an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree.

U-M President Mary Sue Coleman announced the change this week, in consultation with campus event planners and the White House.

“We want students and their guests to have plenty of time to comfortably make it to campus and through security at the stadium, so that they can enjoy this historic event honoring the achievements of our 2010 graduates,” Coleman said.

The stadium gates will be open at 6 a.m. Graduates and their families and friends are encouraged to come early to allow adequate time to park, shuttle or walk to the stadium, and get through security. Specific information about where to park and enter the stadium, and what items are permissible, will be forthcoming. University leaders are working with the president’s staff to finalize those details, which will be posted on the commencement Web site,, when available. The university anticipates further details will be posted in early April.

Students planning to participate in their department, college and school celebrations will learn from their respective units if the change in start time for the main event will affect those activities.

Obama will be the fourth sitting president to visit the university in Ann Arbor, and the first on campus since the U.S. has recommended tighter security measures at large public venues, such as Michigan Stadium.