Frequently Asked Questions

General Lavender Celebration Questions

What is Lavender Celebration?

Lavender Graduate Celebration is the University of Southern California’s annual graduation ceremony for LGBTQ+ undergraduate and graduate/professional students. Similar to USC’s Black Graduate Celebration and Latinx/Latine Graduate Celebration, Lavender Celebration honors students from within the LGBTQ+ community to commemorate their contributions to the university.

When is Lavender Celebration?

Lavender Celebration is held annually before final exams and other campus commencement activities to guarantee all Trojans are able to attend. The 2021 Lavender Celebration ceremony will be held virtually via Zoom on Sunday, May 2nd, 2-3:30pm

Who will be at Lavender Celebration?

Lavender Celebration has a keynote speaker who shares advice, words of wisdom, and their own life experiences with graduates. In addition, LGBTQ+ and allied faculty and staff members attend as do alumni from the USC Lambda LGBT Alumni Association. Other community members from local LGBTQ+ organizations are invited. This is an open event, which means anyone from campus can attend.

What else happens at Lavender Celebration?

At Lavender Celebration, graduates are recognized and presented with a certificate. The celebration also recognizes and awards undergraduate and graduate student leaders as well as LGBTQ+ and allied faculty and staff members who have positively impacted LGBTQ+ life on campus. At the end of the celebration, there is a post-event reception for all graduates and guests.

How long is the program?

The actual Lavender Celebration program is no longer than an hour and a half. We have an optional reception afterwards for networking.

How can I apply for Lambda Alumni Association scholarships?

The USC Lambda LGBT Alumni Association scholarship applications are available online and due in the early part of the spring semester. Undergraduate and graduate/professional students are able to apply.

Who coordinates Lavender Celebration?

The LGBTQ+ Student Center assembles a Lavender Celebration planning committee each year. The committee consists of representatives from the Center, USC Lambda LGBT Alumni Association, QuASA, graduate LGBTQ+ student leaders and other interested students, staff, and faculty.  If you are interested in joining, please email lgbtqplus@usc.edu.

Graduate Participant Questions

Why should I participate in Lavender Celebration?

If you are a graduating student and identify as LGBTQ+, you are invited and encouraged to participate in Lavender Celebration as it is an opportunity to celebrate and recognize your contributions to campus and to be in community with other LGBTQ+ graduates. As a participant, you will receive a rainbow tassel, special gift, and recognition from the Division of Student Affairs.

How do I sign up to be in Lavender Celebration?

If you are a graduate, please complete the registration form.

Can my friends and family attend Lavender Celebration?

Yes. If you are a graduate, please complete the registration form and use your two invitation opportunities to send invites to friends and family. If you need more invitations, please e-mail the Lavender Celebration Planning Committee at lgbtqplus@usc.edu.

When will I receive verification for Lavender Celebration?

You will be contacted by the LGBTQ+ Student Center three weeks before the actual event.

How many graduates usually participate in Lavender Celebration?

Typically 50-60 graduating undergrad and graduate students participate annually in Lavender Celebration.

How long is the program?

The actual Lavender Celebration program is no longer than an hour and a half. We have a small reception afterwards for networking.

How should I dress?

Dress for the graduates is business casual. You do not need to wear a cap and gown.

Invited Guests Questions

If I am not a graduate and I want to attend, do I need to RSVP?

Yes. To help coordinate logistics for the event, all guests are asked to RSVP. If you are a guest, please complete the guest registration form.

How do I get to Argue Plaza?

Please visit this site to get driving directions and a map of campus.

Where should I park?

You should park in Parking Structure X (PSX) located at Gate 3, the corner of Jefferson and Figueroa. Parking is $10.

Will there be food and refreshments?

Yes, there will be food and beverage service at the post-event reception immediately following Lavender Celebration.

Donate to the Celebration

USC provides outstanding, nationally recognized services to the LGBTQ+ community. With your support, we are able to continue our work and expand programs like Lavender Celebration. Consider making a gift to help our LGBTQ+ students to graduate and become outstanding members of our community.

If I make a gift to USC, what would my funds support?

  • Recognition Awards for outstanding LGBTQ+ undergraduate, graduate/professional student leaders.
  • Honorarium and travel expenses for a keynote speaker. Previous keynote speakers include writer and transgender advocate, Janet Mock, Executive Director and CEO for the Point Foundation, Jorge Valencia, and Lorri L. Jean, Executive Director for the L.A. LGBT Center
  • Special gifts for graduates. Previous gifts include Lavender Road to Success, rainbow tassels, and gift cards.