Commencement for 2019 graduates was held at sunset, Friday, May 17, on the College’s historic Bayfront.

Commencement 2020

Commencement for 2020 graduates will be held at sunset, Friday, May 15 on the College’s historic Bayfront. The ceremony will be live-streamed to Sainer Auditorium and on this web page. The rain date will be Saturday, May 16 at 10 a.m.


Tuesday, May 12, 2020

  • 5 p.m.: Celebrate Your Success with the CEO

Thursday, May 14, 2020

  • 4 p.m.: President’s Reception for graduates, their family and faculty, College Hall

Friday, May 15, 2020

  • 10 a.m.: Graduation Rehearsal (Mandatory) Bayfront
  • 11 a.m.: Alumni Welcome to Graduates, Bayfront
  • 7 p.m.: Graduation Ceremony, Bayfront

Saturday, May 16, 2020
Rain date at 10 a.m. (if necessary)


If you have questions about Commencement, please call Shelley Wilbur at 941-487-4100.


As you near campus from any direction, follow the many signs directing you to the parking area near College Hall. Parking attendants will greet and assist you with parking Handicap parking is available. When you arrive, please let the attendant know you require a handicap space. There will also be golf carts circulating to assist with transportation to the graduation tent.


GradImages is the official commencement photographer for New College of Florida. Your proofs will be ready to view online as soon as 48 hours after the ceremony. In order to notify you when your images are available, GradImages sends emails and mails paper proofs, along with optional text message notifications. Your information is never shared and privacy is guaranteed.

Pre-registering is simply a way to make sure your contact information is up to date with GradImages, so they can provide your complimentary proofs as quickly as possible. Although there’s never any obligation to order, you’ll save 20% off orders of $50 or more for your participation. To pre-register for your commencement proofs, please visit

Graduation Announcements

Official announcements are available in the President’s Office – Cook Hall 204. Each student will receive 10 announcements.

Cap and Gown

Academic apparel at Commencement is optional for faculty and students. If you would like to rent regalia, it is available through the Campus Bookstore. Please contact Melissa at the bookstore (941-355-5252 or for more information.

Directions to Campus and Local Hotel Accommodations

Campus Map and Directions

Coming to New College? We have maps and directions.

Read more here


There are many great hotels close to the New College campus. Be sure to ask for the special New College rate.

Read more here

Commencement Speaker for 2020

Robert Bilott
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP

New College of Florida alumnus Robert Bilott is an attorney whose work battling corporate giant DuPont is chronicled in his recently published book Exposure and the 2019 movie Dark Waters. Bilott, a 1987 graduate and a member of the New College Alumni Association board of directors, is a partner at the Taft law firm in Cincinnati.

In 1998, he got a phone call from a farmer who knew Bilott’s grandmother in West Virginia. More than 150 of the farmer’s cows had died, after developing deformities and ailments. Bilott began looking into the case, eventually tracing the problem to a substance known as PFOA, in water coming from a DuPont landfill.

Bilott’s digging revealed that DuPont had known for years that the substance caused a variety of illnesses, including two cancers, and that DuPont had dumped PFOA into open pits that allowed it to enter the local water supply. In 2001, Bilott brought his findings to the Environmental Protection Agency and filed a class-action lawsuit in West Virginia.

By 2011, more than 3,500 personal injury lawsuits from West Virginia residents had been filed against DuPont. In 2017, DuPont agreed to pay $671 million to settle those lawsuits. To date, DuPont has paid more than $1 billion in penalties from the PFOA findings.

At Taft, he continues to represent a diverse range of clients on matters involving federal, state, and local environmental law. For more than 27 years, he has handled environmental issues of regulatory compliance, permitting and corporate/real estate transactions, as well as all aspects of litigation arising from such issues, from administrative hearings to multi-party, complex multi-district litigation, mass torts and class actions.

He has handled matters involving highly complex and emerging scientific issues with some of the nation’s leading medical, technical, scientific and regulatory experts and advisors. Such matters have included hazardous, solid, medical and infectious wastes, emerging and unregulated chemicals, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), such as PFOA and PFOS, air and water pollution and permitting, medical monitoring, brownfield redevelopment, landfill regulation and permitting, wastewater treatment, and chemical risk assessment, regulation and testing.

2019 Address: Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum, president emerita of Spelman College, was the keynote speaker at New College of Florida’s 2019 Commencement. Read her address here.


 Images from the 2019 Commencement: