Graduation General Information

What to expect on the day

  • Please ensure that you arrive at least 30 minutes prior to your graduation start time to register your attendance. 
  • Guest will be seated no later than 15 minutes prior to the ceremony commencement. Guest seating is by general admission (you can sit where you like), and is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • The venue for each ceremony is usually filled to capacity, so it’s good to arrive early, particularly if you are with a group. Our ushers will do their best to ensure you are seated together.
  • Graduates will be seated together in a particular order near the front of the venue, and will not be seated with guests. Please stay in your correct seats at all times so that you receive the correct award when you cross the stage.
  • The larger ceremonies will run for roughly two hours and the regional ceremonies will be roughly one hour. Tautoko (support) in the form of waiata or haka from whānau and friends is warmly welcomed at all ceremonies.


Complimentary light refreshments will be provided for you and your guests following each of the ceremonies. This is an opportunity to celebrate and mingle with academic staff, fellow graduates and your guests.   

Graduands or guests with accessible requirements

There will be a reserved area for any graduates or guests with accessible requirements at each of the graduation ceremonies. If you or your guests have any accessible requirements, please contact the graduation team ahead of time.


As a graduate, you do not require a ticket for yourself. Complimentary guest tickets are dependent on the ceremony, please see below for more information. 

Certificate Graduations

Guest tickets are not required to gain entrance into certificate graduation ceremonies, however when you apply to graduate you are prompted to specify the number of guests that you will have attending graduation with you.

Diploma and above Graduations 

You will be able to receive a maximum of four complimentary guest tickets for Diploma and above graduation ceremonies held at the Trustpower Arena in Tauranga or the Energy Events Centre in Rotorua. Due to limited space in the venue there is a maximum of four guest tickets per student and you will not be able to purchase any more.

Marae Graduation 

Tickets are not required to gain entrance into the marae ceremony and there is no restriction on the number of guests attending.

Academic dress

Dress code at Certificate graduation ceremonies

No academic regalia is required for certificate graduation ceremonies. However, graduation is a formal ceremony so please attend dressed in tidy attire.

Dress code at Diploma and above graduation ceremonies

All students graduating at the Diploma and above graduation ceremonies are required to wear the appropriate academic regalia for your qualification. You'll need to submit your regalia requirements and make payment when you register to attend graduation.

Regalia collection will then be available from the venue the day prior and the day of your graduation. Specified regalia collection dates, times and locations will be released closer to the date. 

Dress code on the marae

As with all other graduation ceremonies, the one at the marae is a formal occasion and therefore a respectful dress code applies. Graduands are encouraged to wear black – long pants for men, a skirt for women and tops that cover your upper arms. We would be delighted if you would like to wear a cloak, korowai, or other cultural attire.

Handy tips to get your regalia measurements right!


Swift & Click Photography will photograph all award presentations and will also be available for formal portraits and class photos before and after each ceremony.

There is no sitting fee and photographs will be available to download for free. They also have an online shop set up if you want to purchase printed images following the graduation ceremony.