Commencement Parking and Transportation Information
Before You Arrive
Parking at UCSC during Commencement Weekend is extremely limited. Please consider carpooling or taking public transportation. Information about Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District (SCMTD) buses is available at www.scmtd.com. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday of Commencement Weekend, SCMTD buses to and from the UCSC campus are fare-free.
Each graduate receives two commencement parking passes (general or disabled) from their college, as well as specific information about the location and time of their ceremony. Commencement ceremonies take place on either the east or west side of campus. Be sure to ask your graduate on which side of campus their commencement ceremony takes place, and follow the “EAST” or “WEST” commencement directional signs when you arrive at UCSC.
Note that on Friday only, parking in the East Remote lot will not require a permit or commencement parking pass.
Due to the large number of people arriving on campus throughout Commencement Weekend, please arrive no more than 45 minutes to 1-1/2 hours before the scheduled commencement you’re attending.
When You Arrive
Have your commencement parking pass ready. Follow the directional signs for your college commencement as you approach the campus main entrance at Bay and High Streets. If you do not have a commencement parking pass, park at the Barn Theater (Lot 122) at the campus main entrance. Shuttles will transport you to your commencement. If you have an east side pass, proceed through the main entrance and follow directional signage to the appropriate parking lot. Note: You will not be allowed to proceed beyond the East Remote Parking Lot on Hagar Drive unless you have a VIP or disabled pass. If you have a west side pass, continue on High Street past the main entrance, and turn right at the West Entrance on Heller Drive; follow directional signage to the appropriate parking lot. If you have a large vehicle (e.g., buses, limousines and recreational vehicles) park at the Barn Theater parking lot located at the campus main entrance. Once parked at the Barn Theater, board a campus shuttle bus to ceremony locations. Buses, limousines and recreational vehicles will not be allowed into parking lots at ceremony locations.
Park Where Directed
University Police and Event Parking staff will be present at campus parking lot entrances and will direct guests to the correct parking lot for the commencement ceremony that they will be attending. As lots fill, the place where you will park may change; please cooperate with police and parking lot attendants in regard to parking instructions. Once you've parked, place your commencement parking pass on your dash and either walk to the commencement location or go to the shuttle pick-up stop in each parking lot to be transported.
VIP and Disabled Parking
Each commencement ceremony has designated VIP and disabled parking. Have your pass ready and inform the parking lot attendants of your need and they will direct you to appropriate spaces.
Commencement Shuttle Service
Special campus shuttles are provided between parking lots and commencement ceremonies. For transportation from parking lots to ceremonies walk to the nearest shuttle bus stop and take a shuttle that displays the name of the college of your graduate. In addition to commencement-specific shuttles, a Loop Shuttle will run every 10-15 minutes, both clockwise and counter clockwise through campus, on Saturday and Sunday. There is no fare required for campus shuttles.
There are several parking options available for those with mobility or stamina impairments. The easiest and most direct option is to park in the designated disabled spaces in your commencement's parking lot and use the commencement shuttle service. If you use a wheelchair or motorized mobility device, or if ascending two steps in a shuttle vehicle is problematic for you, please request an accessible parking pass from your graduate's college. The accessible parking pass will allow parking in the East Field House lot for commencements occurring on the East Field, and in designated lots for other commencement locations. You will then board a lift-equipped van to the ceremony site on the East or West Fields or other commencement site. When you arrive in the lot, look for a Disability Van Service (DVS) vehicle and indicate to the driver the need for this service. Should you arrive at the lot and not see a DVS van, tell a campus shuttle driver and they will dispatch one to the lot. As these vans can only carry a few people at a time, we suggest that those who need to ride these vans have one person from their party accompany them; the rest of their party can walk the short distance to the ceremony site. The East and West Fields are flat and grassy. If requested, students will be available with wheelchairs to assist guests to their seats.
"No Pet" Policy
UCSC has a "no pet" policy that is strictly enforced. (Animals utilized for disability accommodation as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act are allowed.) If you enter campus with a pet (non-service animal) you will be asked to exit campus and board your pet. There are several "pet hotels" in Santa Cruz County equipped to board your pets. Check local listings.
If You Already Have a UCSC Permit
In order to accommodate the large number of visitors in the East and West Remote lots, R permit holders who live on campus are requested to move their vehicles to the North Remote during Commencement weekend.
A, B, C, and non-resident R permit holders attending Commencement ceremonies will be directed to park in the lots designated for those individual events. Parking is strictly controlled throughout the weekend; please follow University Police and/or Event Parking staff signals and park where directed.
UCSC permit holders coming to campus for reasons other than Commencement should be aware that many lots will be full, or may be restricted to those with special permits or DMV placards. Please refer to the maps available at the top of this page for a day-by-day view of impacted lots. C permit holders who are unable to find parking in their regular lot may park in any non-reserved space in any non-restricted lot during Commencement weekend.
When You Leave
After you've attended commencement (and perhaps a related reception), take a campus shuttle or walk to your car. Please follow University Police and Event Parking staff's directional hand signals as you leave the lot. Due to the large number of guests being directed on and off campus, you will only be allowed to travel in one direction. We appreciate your patience and thank you for making this orchestration safe for everyone.