Your guide to Skidmore's academic regalia
Creative Thought Matters. It’s the thread that ties the Skidmore community together while simultaneously emboldening us to celebrate our differences.
Skidmore's Commencement day is a living example of that core conviction, and you don't have to look much further than Skidmore graduates' regalia to see how.
A community of individuals
At Commencement, all Skidmore graduates don the same matching black caps and gowns, uniting them as the Class of 2023 and connecting them with college graduates throughout history.
But they also wear symbols of individual accomplishment — sashes, hoods, stoles, and cords in red, purple, yellow, pink, teal, blue, white, green, and gold — and creative expression — a decorated mortarboard, a flower lei, or perhaps a bedazzled robe.
Those wearing each item may represent the shared experience of hundreds or the unique experience of one individual.
In one brief ceremony, the unique stories of individual students come together to complete Skidmore's chapter on the Class of 2023.
For more on the historic symbolism behind Skidmore Commencent attire, we've put together this guide.
While all graduates will wear the traditional black undergraduate robe, Skidmore uses hoods to symbolically recognize whether a student has earned a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree.
Multifaceted academic experiences are further celebrated through distinct medals, pins and cords that are bestowed upon graduates at special pre-Commencement ceremonies such as Honors Convocation.
White or yellow Hoods
Those receiving a Bachelor of Arts will don hoods trimmed in white, a color representing
the arts. Those earning a Bachelor of Science will don hoods trimmed with golden yellow,
a color symbolizing the sciences.
Gold medallions on green straps
Periclean Honors Forum
Seniors wearing this medallion are members of the Periclean Honors Forum. To be a
member, they must complete Honors Forum courses, a senior-year capstone experience
and an approved citizenship project. They must also demonstrate exemplary academic
and social integrity and have a final GPA of 3.5 or higher with no history of two
consecutive semesters below 3.5.
Flag lapel pins
Study abroad countries
Seniors who participated in an international or domestic off-campus program through Skidmore may wear a flag of the host nation where they studied.
All college honors
Seniors with distinguished academic records who are graduating cum laude (3.650–3.749 GPA), magna cum laude (3.750–3.899 GPA) or summa cum laude (3.900–4.000 GPA).
For seniors who meet various criteria or achieve academic standing specific to their department or program. While the qualifications differ, many involve having a GPA of 3.5 or higher for all work in the major, the completion of a capstone or thesis, a GPA of 3.0 or higher on all Skidmore work and approval by the department’s faculty.
Teal Cords, blue Cords, pink Cords and more
Various honor societies
For the hundreds of graduating seniors who have been inducted into various honor societies for high academic achievement.
Some of these include Alpha Kappa Delta (sociology), Delta Phi Alpha (German), Eta Sigma Phi (classics), Nu Rho Psi (neuroscience), Omicron Delta Epsilon (economics), Phi Alpha Theta (history), Phi Beta Kappa (all college), Pi Delta Phi (French), Pi Mu Epsilon (math), Pi Sigma Alpha (political science), Psi Chi (psychology), Sigma Delta Pi (world languages) and Sigma Pi Sigma (physics).
These cords and stoles are worn by seniors who wish to carry symbols of diversity with them at Commencement.
Many were given by the Offices of the Dean of Students and Student Diversity Programs at a special ceremony prior to Commencement.
Rainbow or lavender Cords
For seniors who wish to signify pride in being a part of the LGBTQIA+ community and in their achievements despite the obstacles they may have experienced.
bLUE AND wHITE cORDS
Jewish student life
For seniors who wish to signify being active members of the Jewish community, continuing their journey of practice, learning and Tikkun Olam (repairing the world).
bLUE AND Orange cORDS
For seniors who wish to signify being actively involved in Skidmore Christian Fellowship.
gREEN AND Purple Cords
For seniors who have led STEMpathy, a campus organization that supports students of color in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).
WHITE AND BLUE cORDS
For seniors who wish to signify their involvement with the Opportunity Program at Skidmore, celebrating their academic achievements despite barriers placed before them.
Stoles with Flags, stripes or a rainbow of colors
Members of the Class of 2023 come from 50 different countries. Skidmore offers, and many international seniors choose to wear, a stole inspired by the flag of their home country, a nod to where their stories began. Flags of their countries will also be featured on the Commencement stage.
Stoles with a Yellow and green woven pattern
The seniors wearing this stole are part of the first generation in their family to
graduate from a four-year college. Many choose to wear this stole to celebrate their
accomplishments and the hurdles they have overcome.
BLUE OR BLACK Stoles with Red, GREEN, and gold STRIPES
Students of color
The symbolism of the Kente is hundreds of years old, dating back to the legend of Ananse the spider in Ghana. Today, Kente cloth designs vary and different designs and colors carry special meanings and stories.
Many students from various cultural and ethnic heritages choose to wear this stole to acknowledge their ancestry, celebrate their pride, and stand in solidarity with graduates of color at Skidmore and across generations.
Student life and leadership
Representing or serving the Skidmore community — through student government, athletics, club leadership, or other college service — is a significant point of pride for many graduates and the College. In turn, there are a number of unique stoles and cords students can wear that honor their efforts.
Green Stoles with the Thoroughbred logo
Seniors wearing this stole are members of one of Skidmore’s 19 varsity teams. The stole symbolizes each student’s dedication to excelling on and off the field and in their classrooms, laboratories, and studios.
Green stole with the skidmore ems logo
For service to the Skidmore community through Skidmore College Emergency Medical Services (SCEMS) team, a New York State basic life-support,
first-response agency staffed by trained students.
white stole with the skidmore peer health educators logo
Peer Health Educators
For seniors who served the community as peer health educators, a volunteer group associated
with Skidmore Health Promotions. They help students maintain healthy lifestyles and
make safe choices related to sexual health, nutrition, fitness, relationships, and
For members of the Student Government Association Executive Committee for representing the student body in academic, financial, student life, club, and inclusion affairs.
Yellow and green Cords
For seniors who showed demonstrated interest in furthering Skidmore’s mission by participating in community-building, fundraising, and support activities.
Gold and white Cords
For seniors who have aided the Office of Admissions in growing Skidmore through service as tour guides and hosts of prospective students and families.
Senior Class Council Officers
For senior class officers to recognize their service in representing their peers on student senate and other student engagements.
Anything one of a kind
Because Creative Thought Matters
For seniors who want to express their stories, friend groups, clubs, and more as they cross the stage and become alumni of Skidmore College.