Lavender Graduation

Thank you for your interest in the Lavender Graduation which highlights and celebrates our LGBTQ+ and Ally identities on campus!
image of student graduating

Celebrate Lavender Excellence

The Intercultural Student Engagement Center collaborates with Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies , in addition to various LGBTQ+ student groups, to coordinate identity and culturally based graduation ceremonies that complement the University’s commencement celebrations. These cultural celebrations acknowledge the value and uniqueness of underrepresented student experiences and serve to commemorate and highlight the accomplishments of individuals within a familial and cultural context.

History of the Lavender Graduation

Lavender Graduation is an annual ceremony conducted on numerous campuses to honor lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and ally students and acknowledge their achievements and contributions to the University.

The Lavender Graduation Ceremony was created by Dr. Ronni Sanlo, a Jewish Lesbian, who was denied the opportunity to attend the graduations of her biological children because of her sexual orientation. It was through this experience that she came to understand the pain felt by her students. Encouraged by the Dean of Students at the University of Michigan, Dr. Sanlo designed the first Lavender Graduation Ceremony in 1995. The first Lavender Graduation began at the University of Michigan in 1995, with three graduates. By 2001, there were over 45 Lavender Graduation Ceremonies at Colleges and Universities nationwide. Graduating students, including undergraduates and graduates, are invited to participate in the celebration, which typically occurs each year the week before university-wide commencement events.

The first Lavender Graduation at UTA occurred in 2012. In partnership with Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies, students who earned a minor in Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies. Students who participate in Lavender Graduation will receive regalia which they can wear at their commencement.

Lotus Laureate Graduations FAQ

Any Student (undergraduate or graduate) who will be graduating in the Spring semester can participate. The ceremony celebrates LGBTQ+ students and allies alike, and those students will receive a cord or a stole depending on their preference to wear at graduation.
Yes! The registration form serves to inform graduation committees to include their programs, how many students to expect, etc.
While we would like to provide stoles/cords to every graduating student, stoles/cords are limited so please register early!
While the Intercultural Student Engagement Center only hosts identity graduation ceremonies during the Spring Semester, those graduating in December can up for our fall ceremony during our Queersgiving Event.