Drive Through Commencement Ceremony

Congratulatory signs from the Drive Through commencement celebration

Congratulatory signs from the Drive Through commencement celebration

Congratulatory signs from the Drive Through commencement celebration

Spring 2021 Ceremony - May 15, 2021

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A masked graduate faces the camera, with her commencement profile in the background

Staff holds a stop sign for the Drive-Thru commencement

A student adorned witn many lei and a unique mortarboard

A student holds a degree next to a bunch of balloons

A student holds her degree in front of the large screen display, with UH officials in background

A masked student holds a degree

View all photos from the Drive-Through Ceremony

Drive-Through Live Stream

Guidelines & Rules

UH Hilo will be hosting a drive-through component of the Spring 2021 Virtual Commencement Ceremony. This is not a public event. A live-stream video of the event will be broadcast for public viewing (the address will be shared at a later date). Please adhere to these rules and guidelines so that our students may be recognized in a safe physical distancing event. Federal, State, and Hawaiʻi County guidelines regarding Covid-19 will be followed. We reserve the right to cancel the event at a moment's notice if guidelines are not followed.


Due to road closures on campus that day, you must enter from Komohana Street using the Nowelo Street entrance to campus (see map). Graduates participating in the event must check-in at the tent on Nowelo Street near Hale‘ōlelo during your assigned start time according to the schedule below. Vehicles with graduates will drive down the hill to the UCB Fire Lane and stop at check-in 2 for the name announcer, then proceed to the staging area, and receive a diploma cover and printed program. Vehicles will then drive through the lower campus parking lot and exit via Kawili Street near the Theater.

Seat belts and face masks are required. Only the graduate is allowed to exit their vehicle.

Drive-Through Commencement path

Temporary Road & Parking Lot Closures

On Saturday, May 15, 2021 there will be temporary road and parking lot closures on campus between 9:30 AM and 1:00 PM to celebrate UH Hilo’s Spring 2021 graduates in a Drive-Through Event. The event will be closed-off to through traffic and temporarily impact the following areas:

Road Closures: 9:30am – 1:00pm

  • Nowelo Street from ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center to the entrance of Hale ʻIkena parking. There will be no exit to Komohana Street via Nowelo Street from 7am - 1pm.
  • Main entrance to campus will be a right-turn only to the Bookstore in a one-way traffic pattern and will exit by the Theatre. There will be no left-turn access to the Athletics Complex from the main entrance.
  • Theatre entrance to campus will be a right-turn only to the back parking lot of the Theatre and will exit by the Old Gym to Kapiʻolani Street.

Nowelo Street will be closed from the Administration Building to ʻImiloa Astronomy Center. Housing residents at Hale ʻIkena and Hale Kauanoe will be able to enter and exit via Lanikaula Street.

Parking Lot Closures: 9:30am – 1:00pm

  • Zone 2 parking (from Bookstore to Theatre)
  • Gravel lot by PB 21 (near swimming pool)
  • Haleʻōlelo parking lot will be closed from 9:30am – 1:00pm.

There will be No Parking in Zone 6 fronting College of Ag to the Business Office.

Drive-Through Commencement path
Legend, showing colors of paths on the map (also described in text)

Drive-Through Schedule

Please sign-up for your preferred time for your Celebration when you register online for graduation. Register Now!!

Group 1

Group 2
-- Full ---

Group 3
-- Full ---

Group 4


Cap, Gown, and Kīhei (optional).

Drive-Through Rules

  • Only vehicles with UH Hilo Spring 2021 Graduates will be allowed to participate in the event. Family and friends can be passengers in the same vehicle, and are strictly prohibited from gathering on campus or accompanying in additional vehicles.
  • Graduates should be seated in the front passenger side seat (when possible). Although, graduates may drive themselves.
  • More than one Spring 2021 graduating student may be in a vehicle. Ideally, graduates will be driven by a non-graduate. Graduates will be permitted to exit the vehicle to receive diploma cover on stage. Vehicles will follow along side graduates.
  • Graduates that do not have a vehicle, please contact for alternatives prior to April 30th.
  • Graduates and passengers in the vehicle must all be wearing a seat belt and a face mask. Only the graduate is allowed to exit their vehicle.
  • There shall be no audience, other than the faculty and staff of UH Hilo and invited guests. These people will be spread apart to observe physical distancing guidelines and will be wearing face masks throughout the event.
  • Absolutely nothing should be thrown from the vehicle at any time throughout the event.
  • If driving a truck, no one is allowed to be in the bed of any truck.
  • Vehicles must obey posted speed limits.

Safety Expectations for All Participants

Face masks are required at all times. Anyone without a face mask will not be allowed to participate in the event.

Anyone with the following symptoms in the last 5 days will not be allowed to participate:

  • Fever greater than 100.4 °F or feeling feverish (chills, sweating)
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath/difficulty breathing
  • Sore throat
  • Unexplained muscle/body aches
  • Nausea/vomiting or diarrhea
  • Loss of senses of taste or smell
  • Unusually weak or fatigued
  • Runny or congested nose
  • Headache
  • Skin rash
  • Chest pain or pressure

If in the past 14 days any of the following apply, you will not be able to participate:

  • Traveled out of the state and are currently under quarantine orders by the Department of Health or your medical care provider.
  • The Department of Health told you that you have been in contact with a person with Covid-19.
  • Have been in close contact (<6 feet for ≥ 15 minutes) with anyone who has an active, diagnosed case of Covid-19.

Note: Healthcare students/personnel wearing appropriate PPE at all times while caring for a patient with Covid-19 would not be considered a close contact (ref. DOH medical advisory #16)

Interactive Map

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