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Commencement 2023


English & History Convocation

Date:  Friday, May 5, 2023 at 3:00 p.m.

Location:  Bass Concert Hall


  • This commencement ceremony is intended for fall '22, spring '23, and projected summer '23 Liberal Arts graduates majoring in English or History.  To participate, students must first apply to graduate (or, for summer graduates, join the walk list) through the College of Liberal Arts.  Once approved, graduates and "walkers" will be sent a link and instructions for a mandatory RSVP.  Please reach out to us through the contact e-mail above if you missed the RSVP deadline but would like to participate in our commencement.

  • Seating

    Tickets are not required for this event.  General Admission seating will be available in Bass Concert Hall on a first-come, first-served basis, with doors opening for guests at 2:30 p.m.  The event will not be livestreamed.

  • Venue Policies

    Texas Performing Arts is part of The University of Texas at Austin.  Pursuant to Texas Penal Code Section 46.035, it is illegal to openly carry a handgun on campus, including at Texas Performing Arts venues.

    No outside food or drink, including water, are permitted in Bass Concert Hall (see exceptions here).  Additionally, the following items are strictly prohibited:

    • All forms of tobacco and tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, per UT Tobacco-Free Policy
    • Large backpacks or luggage
    • Recording devices of any kind
    • Cameras with detachable lenses or tripods
    • Hard containers including glass and vases
    • Items deemed as weapons (including pocket knives) and fireworks
    • Banners, balloons, and noisemakers
    • Selfie-sticks
    • iPads, and other tablets
    • Pets (trained service animals or service animals in training with identifiable vests will be allowed; service animals must remain on leash or in a harness at all times)
    • Strollers are not permitted in seating areas
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  • Campus parking garages will be open for free parking on commencement days.  Specific garage and surface lot information will be released in May and available here.  The San Jacinto Garage (SJG), Manor Garage (MAG), and surface lots east of the LBJ Presidential Library (LBJ) and Sid Richardson Hall (SRH) are in relatively close proximity to Bass Concert Hall, which is in the southernmost section of the Performing Arts Center (PAC).

    A general campus map is available here.  A Bass Concert Hall area commencement map is available here, with the blue hash lines indicating May 5th closures.  Please note that Robert Dedman Drive will be closed from Martin Luther King, Jr., Boulevard to Deloss Dodds Way on Friday.  Additionally, Clyde Littlefield/Manor Road will be closed from Interstate 35 to Red River.  Because of these closures, please take southbound Red River Street from Dean Keaton Street, then go right/west on Clyde Littefield Drive in order to access Manor Garage (MAG).

    We've been assured that the drop-off point mentioned below will be open for our ceremony.  Guests utilizing the drop-off are encouraged to park in San Jacinto Garage (SJG).  Note that the red hash lines on the area map indicate Saturday closures and are not in effect for our ceremony.

    As a general reminder, though, please allow extra time for parking due to campus congestion.

  • Accessibility

    Graduates, please include accommodation requests in your event RSVP.  Commencement planners will respond to inquiries not addressed by the information below.  If an accommodation request was not included in the RSVP, please reach out to us at the contact e-mail near the top of the page.


    A drop-off point in front of Bass Concert Hall on Deloss Dodds Way (formerly 23rd Street), across from Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium, is available for mobility impaired guests.  Please note that Robert Dedman Drive will be closed from Martin Luther King, Jr., Boulevard to Deloss Dodds Way on Friday; guests should approach the drop-off by turning south from Dean Keaton Street onto Robert Dedman Drive, then right/west at Deloss Dodds Way.

    A few disability/ADA parking spots near Bass Concert Hall will be available on the day of the event on a first-come, first-served basis.

    Wheelchair Seating

    Please visit Guest Services, just to the left of the Bass Concert Hall entrance, upon arrival.  From there, Ushers and House Managers will escort guests to the wheelchair seating area.  They can also provide assistance to mobility-impaired guests seeking temporary wheelchair use to navigate the venue.


    An American Sign Language interpreter will provide a live translation of our ceremony in Bass Concert Hall.

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  • Dr. Nichole S. Prescott joined The University of Texas System in December 2016. As Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, P16 Initiatives, Dr. Prescott takes a lead role in strengthening the preK-16 pipeline and enhance college readiness for Texas students through expanded collaboration between the U. T. System, U. T. institutions and public preK-12 partners as well as entities. Dr. Prescott has a Ph.D. in History from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, two M.A. degrees in History and Women's Studies from SUNY and Miami University, and a B.A. in History from U. T. Austin.

    Before joining the U. T. System, Dr. Prescott served as the Director of Student Success for E3 Alliance, a regionally focused data-driven education organization that is the Central Texas P16 council. Her work focused on eliminating the achievement and opportunity gaps in Central Texas. As director, she oversaw a portfolio of initiatives aimed at building education systems through collaborative action with education, business, and community stakeholders in order to build the strongest educational pipeline in the country as the means to drive regional economic prosperity.

    Included among her accomplishments at E3, Dr. Prescott led the Central Texas Council on Educator Preparation and scaled a nationally recognized English Language Learning initiative to 52 schools in 10 districts impacting 10,000 students. As a result of her strong leadership around the transformative system work targeted toward improving outcomes for English Language Learners, E3 Alliance and its partners were awarded a White House Initiative for Educational Excellence for Hispanics Bright Spots Recognition in 2015.

    At the State University of New York at Stony Brook, Dr. Prescott was awarded the W. Burghardt Turner Fellowship (2000-2005) and the Hugh Cleland Award for Innovative Teaching by the Department of History (2005). Among her other awards are the Crane Award, presented by the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma (2003) and the prestigious Frances C. Allen Fellowship, History of the American Indian Scholar-in-Residence, at the Newberry Library in Chicago (2003).

    Dr. Prescott has presented at numerous academic conferences and has been an invited speaker both domestically and internationally. She also co-organized the Indigenous Peoples Symposium at Stony Brook in 2002 to commemorate and reflect on the United Nations First International Decade of the World's Indigenous Peoples. She has authored and co-authored articles in scholarly as well as popular publications, such as Atotankiki Myaamiaki, "What the Miami are Talking About," (Miami tribal newspaper) and The American Indian Graduate.

    Dr. Prescott has been interviewed about her work by national media outlets, such as Indian Country Today and Univision, as well as local media, such as KXAN TV station, KUT (local NPR station) radio station, KLBJ radio station, and Ahora Sí (Spanish portion of the Austin American Statesman). She is a member of the National Congress of American Indians, National Indian Education Association, Native American and Indigenous Studies Association.

    Dr. Prescott is a proud citizen of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma (Myaamia) and actively participates in the culture and language revitalization efforts of her people. Born in an Indian Hospital in Oklahoma, Dr. Prescott was raised on the Texas/Mexico border before she moved to Austin to pursue a college degree at The University of Texas as a first-generation college student. While Austin is her home, Dr. Prescott has maintained a strong engagement with the broader Native American community, formerly serving on the Board of Directors of the American Indians of Texas as well as former Executive Director of the Myaamia Foundation.

    Locally, Dr. Prescott has served on numerous equity-focused committees. Among these are Mayor's Task Force on Institutional Racism & Systemic Inequities, Greater Austin Community Schools Coalition Team (Mayor's Office), Bilingual Innovation Design Team (Austin Independent School District), Newcomer Innovation Design Team Member (Austin Independent School District), Austin Opportunity Youth Collaborative, and the Austin College Access Network. She also volunteers for the Great Promise for American Indians, the Human Rights Campaign, and Out Youth.

  • Other Ceremonies

    The university-wide commencement ceremony will be held on May 6th at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium.  Procession tickets are required for degree candidates and guests.

    The English & History graduation ceremony provides an occasion for recognizing degree candidates individually, including the traditional crossing of the stage and shaking of hands.

    The university-wide ceremony takes place following the college ceremonies and is the culmination of commencement weekend.  Degree candidates from every college and school are eligible to participate.  At this ceremony, students are recognized with others from their college as a group, rather than individually.  The ceremony includes a distinguished speaker, the lighting of the Tower to honor graduates, and a concluding fireworks display.

    A number of other celebrations are offered in conjunction with commencement:

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  • Is academic regalia required?

    Absolutely.  All Liberal Arts majors are expected to wear a traditional black cap and gown with a white stole and white tassel to Commencement.  Though you are not required to purchase regalia through the University Co-Op, many graduates start their regalia search at their graduation shop.  You must wear your regalia from check-in through the end of the ceremony.

    When and where do I check in?

    Check-in for graduates begins at 2:15 at the Bass Concert Hall loading dock (see image here).  This area is for graduates only; you should plan to remain with your fellow graduates once checked in.  Be sure to account for commencement traffic and parking as you make your plans, as you must be in line for check-in no later than 2:40.  Expect delays!

    What can I bring with me?

    Bass has no area for storing backpacks, purses, or other personal belongings.  Please leave any valuables that cannot be carried in your pockets at home or with your family/friends prior to checking in.  Cell phones must be silenced during the ceremony.

    How long will the ceremony last?

    That is difficult to predict, though the aim is around an hour and 45 minutes, give or take 15.

    Can I get a picture?

    FLASH Photography will take a photo of you as you cross the stage, as well as an individual posed photo shortly thereafter.  FLASH will e-mail you proofs of your photos directly; if you choose to purchase photos, you will do so directly through FLASH. 

    Anything else?

    Congratulations!  We look forward to seeing you on the 5th!    

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