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Facts & figures

  • 380,000 alumni worldwide
  • 350 USYD gown variations
  • 1912 When the tradition of throwing graduation headgear started.
  • 'Alumni' From the Latin word ‘alere’, then ‘alumnus’ which was Roman for foster child. Around the 17th century it took on the meaning we use today.
  • Alumnus or alumna? A male graduate and a female graduate respectively.
  • Graduand Someone who passed their exams but hasn't officially graduated yet.
  • Mortarboard It looks like the board that bricklayers use to hold the mortar. Its real name is a trencher cap.

Graduation 2021

Congratulations graduates and welcome to our alumni community!

Find out everything you need to know about celebrating your graduation in-person or online in 2021 and how to make the most of this milestone event.

Graduating in person  

In-person graduation ceremonies will commence from April 2021 with COVID safety practices in place. The ceremonies will be held at the Great Hall and available to watch via live stream. In the event of a COVID outbreak where public health orders or Government restrictions prevent the ceremonies from going ahead, the cancelled ceremonies will not be rescheduled.

University of Sydney Instagram

Click the smiley face on our Instagram profile and share your graduation photos with us #USydClassof2021!

Graduating in absentia  

If you are unable to make it to your graduation, you will graduate in absentia and your degree will be conferred on the date outlined in your graduation invite. You will still be invited to attend your graduation online via live stream and we encourage you to make the most celebrating from home by sharing the link with your family and friends.

Instagram filter

Create your perfect at-home graduation photos using our Instagram filter. Tap the smiley on our Instagram profile and immerse yourself in a virtual graduation experience. Be sure to tag @sydney_uni and #USYDclassof2021.

Jacaranda Snow Globe available at USU shop.

Merchandise and memorabilia

The University of Sydney Union shop offers a wide range of gifts and memorabilia from accessories, clothing and bears to our famous jacaranda snow globe and the University of Sydney monopoly set.  

Life after graduation

Whether you are kicking on with postgraduate study or off to make your mark on the world, as a graduate you’ll forever be a part of the University community. Don't forget that there are a range of resources available to help you with your career goals and continue your passion for lifelong learning.

Don’t be a stranger – keep your details up to date so we can continue to stay in touch and let you know about the latest alumni news, events and benefits. You can also connect with us on Linkedin.


Questions?

Check the latest advice on the graduations webpages, or contact the Student Centre if you have any further questions about your graduation.

The University continues to be guided by the NSW Government’s COVID-Safe advice and restrictions on public gatherings. This has meant we have been unable to host any in-person graduation ceremonies in 2020 as the health, safety and wellbeing of our graduates, their families, our staff, and our community remains our highest priority.

Despite our most optimistic wishes, unfortunately, we will not be able to host any replacement ceremonies on campus for students who graduated in 2020. While we are aware that there are changing health guidelines regarding gatherings in New South Wales, replacing all events that have been cancelled due to COVID-19 will not be possible. We share your disappointment about not being able to celebrate at a traditional graduation ceremony in the Great Hall. 

For more details on event regulations please refer to the NSW Government COVID site.

In person graduation ceremonies will commence from April 2021 with COVID safety practices in place. The ceremonies will be held at the Great Hall with graduates only and guests watching via live-stream at a close-by on campus venue.

The ceremonies are available to watch on a video live stream. In the event of a COVID outbreak where public health orders or Government restrictions prevent the ceremonies from going ahead, the cancelled ceremonies will not be rescheduled and all registered attendees will be refunded.

Continue to check the graduation webpages for the latest information.

If you’re unable to attend your graduation ceremony, you will graduate in absentia. This means the University will automatically put you forward for conferral, the process where you are awarded your award course at the University. Your degree will be conferred on the date outlined in your graduation invite.

You will receive a digital version of your testamur and academic transcript through My eQuals within two business days after your degree is conferred and hard copies will be posted to you.

For more information on receiving your testamur and updating your address visit the graduation webpages.

In early September we live-streamed a special online event from the Great Hall to recognise and celebrate the achievements of our students who completed their studies in Semester 2 2019, and Semester 1 2020. Students enjoyed special messages of congratulations and inspiration from NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, the Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, Deans, alumni, and fellow students.

If you missed the event, you can watch it here.