Lavender Graduation honors LGBTQIA graduates who are undergraduate, graduate, or professional students at Elon University. Each graduate is recognized during the ceremony and receives a graduation stole, lavender graduation cap, rainbow tassel, and certificate.

Lavender Graduation is free to students and fully funded by donations to the Gender and LGBTQIA Center (GLC). To give to the GLC, visit our giving page.

12th Annual Lavender Graduation – May 2024

We are excited for the 12th Annual Lavender Graduation ceremony to honor LGBTQIA graduates who are graduating May 2024. The event details are:

  • Date: Friday, May 10, 2024
  • Ceremony Time: 5:00pm (Graduates arrive at 4:30pm)
  • Location: Alumni Gym, Koury Athletic Center (104 E Haggard Ave, Elon, NC 27244)
  • RSVP:
    • Graduates – Sign Up Form (Sign Up Closed – email for more information)
      • Note: If you are a stole bearer for a graduate, you do not have to RSVP.
    • All Others – RSVP Page 
      • To assist us with food estimates, please RSVP by Tuesday, April 30th.
  • Questions? Email Luis Garay

Note: if you are a student who is graduating in December 2024. we will have a Lavender Graduation ceremony for you on Thursday, December 12th.

What is Lavender Graduation?

Lavender Graduation is an annual ceremony conducted on numerous campuses to honor LGBTQIA students who are graduating by acknowledging their achievements in college as well as their contributions to the university. The 1st Lavender Graduation Ceremony in the U.S. was created by Dr. Ronni Sanlo at the University of Michigan.  Over 100+ universities hold Lavender Graduation Ceremonies among the list of their university’s Commencement Ceremonies.

At Elon, any student about to graduate may be honored, including both undergraduate and graduate students.  Students receive a rainbow stole, lavender graduation cap, rainbow tassel (which can be worn at Elon’s Commencement), and a certificate.

Why a Lavender Graduation Ceremony?

For decades students at colleges and universities around the country have been celebrating both their academic achievements and their cultural heritages at specialized commencement events. These events provide a sense of community for students who often experience tremendous culture shock at their institutions. Many students find these smaller ceremonies both meaningful and personal.

Lavender Graduation is an event to which LGBTQIA students look forward, where they not only share their hopes and dreams with one another, but where they are officially recognized by the institution for their leadership and their successes and achievements.