2021 Commencement Updates

(March 23)

Please take a few minutes to review the following short videos as applicable to you (NOTE the March 29 deadline for the WCL Celebration in the Student Affairs link).

Dear Pending Graduates,

Congratulations – we are so proud of you, and so very excited for all that is to come!

We are doing our best to plan a Commencement ceremony that is both safe and celebratory. As President Burwell announced on March 8, American University is planning both an online commemoration and, if it is allowed by the DC government, an in-person recognition opportunity limited to graduates and a small number of university officials.

Spring 2021 Commencement Celebration

The Spring 2021 Commencement Celebration for spring graduates will air on the AU commencement website over the weekend of May 7-9. Registration is not required for the online celebrations. A digital program listing the names of graduates and degree candidates (as of early April) will be available on the AU commencement site in the days leading up to the celebration. Additional information will be shared via email and the WCL commencement website in the coming weeks.

Spring School Celebrations with Individual Graduate Recognition

American University’s online school commencement celebrations will be held following the university-wide celebration and will feature remarks from the dean and student speakers as well as individual graduate recognition. WCL will hold their school commencement celebration over the weekend of May 22-23. All eligible graduates and candidates for degree will receive a unique Name Coach registration link from commencement@american.edu. The link allows each graduate to record their name and upload their photo.

Graduates are required to submit their photo and name recording by 12:00 p.m. ET on Monday, March 29. Our partner, NameCoach, will create individual slides for each of you that will include your written diploma name, photo, degree awarded, and a professionally-recorded reading of your name.  Also note, March 29, 2021, is a firm deadline and will not be extended.  If a graduate does not submit a recorded name and photo, NameCoach will use a standard AU-related photo. It will appear with the graduate’s diploma name and the name readers will pronounce the name as accurately as they can.

We will continue to update graduating students via email and here on the website. For now:

Local hotels

While guests of graduates will not be included in Commencement activities and events, the law school is securing hotel discounts for those who intend to travel to D.C. Travelers to the area should adhere to the D.C. Mayor’s Order and Phase Implementations as well as to ongoing best practices.

Graduation Checklist

Remember to review the Graduation Checklist 2021 as soon as possible. Please follow the instructions provided and submit appropriate materials by the due dates listed.

Graduation Regalia

The graduation portal (for regalia rental and other purchases, hosted by Herff Jones) is open. Regalia rentals will direct ship both domestically and internationally and include a free return shipping label.


Call 202-274-4030 or email studentaffairs@wcl.american.edu.