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Commencement for May 9, 2020

Update on Regalia below on 3/31/2020. Please scroll down.

As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, it is has become clear that it is not possible to hold a traditional, in-person commencement ceremony in May. We make this decision with regret because we know that commencement is the highlight of the college experience for students and families. It is a celebration of our students’ accomplishments, and it is a day of pride for the university. But we must be responsible in the face of the uncertain timeline for COVID-19 and important restrictions of large gatherings.

This decision does not affect the conferring of degrees and a student’s ability to graduate. Students who are qualified to graduate will still do so, and degrees will be mailed as usual.

This is not necessarily a cancellation. We are exploring alternatives to celebrate graduation virtually or possibly to be held in the future. We have a lot of ideas and welcome your input. Please stay tuned for more information.

Regalia Order Changes / Refunds

It is the full intention of SIU to provide alternative opportunities for you to celebrate your Commencement, with online options as well as opportunities for participation in a future in-person ceremony. If you choose to keep the regalia you ordered for the May 2020 ceremony, you can wear it for a future in-person ceremony.

If you still want to receive your previously ordered regalia, or you still want to order regalia, you are certainly welcome to do so at The online store will remain open until May 31, 2020. Please understand only the home ship option is available at this time.

We also understand that some people may wish to cancel their order or return their regalia, and information about how to do so is included below.

If you ordered your regalia online with Herff Jones, please find the special web forms below:

  • To convert your “pick up at bookstore” order to home ship, for free, go to This free option also includes a prepaid label inside the shipment that allows you to return the rental items (also free to you). Herff Jones offers this free shipping to assist graduates and family members in commemorating their commencement during this unprecedented time. Take photographs, post on social media in your cap and gown, or participate in a ceremony in the future. Please be aware bachelor’s degree students get to keep their cap, tassel & stole. Bachelor’s degree students need only return the gown. Master’s and doctoral graduates must return their gown and hood; the cap and tassel are yours to keep.
  • To request a refund, go to

**Home Ship orders you wish to return for refunds must be in the original plastic packaging. If you open the packaging to try on the materials, take pictures, etc. they cannot be returned for a refund. Please understand that Herff Jones is unable to provide refunds for shipping expenses.

If you ordered your regalia in person at the University Bookstore, please call the University Bookstore at 618-536-3321 to request a refund or have your items shipped to your home. For credit card refunds, please have the card available when you call. University Bookstore hours are Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. We appreciate your patience, as the bookstore is operating with minimal staff at this time.