Commencement Information for Guests

Rush University’s 47th Commencement

Saturday, April 27, 2019
2 to 4 p.m.
Credit Union 1 Arena (formerly UIC Pavilion)
525 S. Racine Ave.
Chicago, IL 60607
Commencement Ceremony Admission

There are no tickets required. Guests may seat themselves on a first-come, first-served basis.

Parking and Transportation

Family members who are interested in parking at Rush may take advantage of our free shuttle service from the Rush campus to the Credit Union 1 Arena. Pickup will be at the southwest corner of Harrison and Paulina streets, and drop-off will be at the Credit Union 1 Arena (northeast corner of Racine and Harrison streets). Shuttle times are as follows:

  • Before the ceremony: Noon to 2:15 p.m.

  • After the ceremony: 4 to 5:30 p.m.

In addition, family members can park directly at the Credit Union 1 Arena in surface lots 1A and 1B. There is ample parking for the event. The cost is $10 per car.

Important Travel Update:

Please be advised that the Racine Exit off of the Eisenhower Expressway (I-290) is closed through Winter 2019. Updates regarding the reopening of the exit will be posted here as frequently as possible. Please consider this information as you plan your travel plans for the day of Commencement.

Security Policy and Prohibited Items

Credit Union 1 Arena does not allow outside food, strollers, balloons, noise makers/air horns or paraphernalia of any kind. Book bags and large purses are also not allowed. For more information, please visit UIC Policy for Bags, Purses and Backpacks.

UIC has introduced new security measures effective immediately. For more information, please visit UIC Policy for the Mandatory Use of Metal Detectors. Please allow additional time due to the new security measures.


The ceremony will begin promptly at 2 p.m. and last approximately two hours. Doors to the Arena will open at 12:30 p.m. to allow family and friends to be seated. All aisles leading to the seats consist of stairs. If guests need accommodations, the UIC staff will assist inside the main doors of the Arena. If you have questions about guest accommodations, please email the Commencement committee.

Accommodations for Accessibility

The Credit Union 1 Arena is ADA accessible and staff are available to assist those in need of a wheelchair. Arena staff will be stationed at the main entrance, Gate 3 located at Harrison & Racine, waiting to assist guests in need of assistance with getting to their seats.  Arena staff will transport guests to designated seating areas and will return after the ceremony to assist those same persons with getting back to the main entrance.

For guests who arrive with their own wheelchairs, areas are designated throughout the arena with clear signage to direct individuals to ADA seating areas. Additionally, guests with their own chairs may station themselves behind the top row on the mezzanine level throughout the Arena.

Service animals are permitted in the Arena, but need to be on a leash and under control at all times. The owner is responsible for cleaning up after the animal outside the Arena.

Large print programs will be available at all entrances. An ASL interpreter is visible via screen in all designated seating areas.

For more information, please contact the Credit Union 1 Arena guest service coordinator at (312) 413-5700.


Please feel free to bring your cameras to take photos. The aisles need to remain clear at all times, especially during the processional, ceremony and recessional. Therefore, family and friends will not be allowed in the aisles or on the main floor during the ceremony. Family pictures may be taken immediately after the ceremony. Please be reminded, regalia needs to be returned to the UIC Parking Garage immediately following the ceremony.

The Rush University Commencement committee has arranged for a professional photographer to take a picture of each graduate as they cross the stage and a posed picture after exiting the stage. Prints may be purchased directly from the photographer.

Ceremony Live Stream

The Commencement ceremony will be streamed live for family and friends who are unable to attend. As the date of commencement approaches, we will provide a link for family and friends to view the ceremony live. Check back on the commencement website for more details.


Security from Rush University Medical Center and Credit Union 1 Arena will be present to ensure the event is safe and secure for participants and guests.

Smoking at Credit Union 1 Arena

The Credit Union 1 Arena is a smoke-free environment, but they do offer a designated smoking area outside Gate 5 during the event. The smoking area is monitored by Arena staff for re-entry.

Dining near Credit Union 1 Arena

UIC is close to a variety of fine dining restaurants. Greek Town, Little Italy and University Village all offer exciting eating establishments within walking distance.

If you have additional questions, please email the Commencement committee.

Hotel Reservations

The Rush University Commencement committee negotiates a special rate  of $229/night at the Marriott Chicago at Illinois Medical District/UIC (625 S. Ashland Ave, Chicago, IL 60607) for out-of-town family members and friends. The deadline to reserve a room under the negotiated special rate is March 26, 2019. Click here to book your group rate for Rush Commencement!

International Guests

Rush University will provide letters of support for visitor visa applications to family members of students, staff and faculty participating in the Commencement ceremony. Please complete a 2019 Commencement Invitation Request for each letter you would like written. Email International Student Services with any questions you have.

Have questions or need assistance regarding Commencement?