Whether you are graduating from high school, a four-year university program, or an advanced degree program, graduation day is an exciting celebration of your success. One of the most confusing but interesting parts of the process is the graduation costume. Although much of the costume is chosen for you, graduation stoles are a different story. They are meant to represent your exact educational experience. In order to help you achieve this with your graduation stole, this article lists a few of the most important factors to pay attention to when you are shopping for your stole.


Although color may seem like a relatively unimportant factor when choosing a graduation stole, it actually matters a lot. All the way back in 1895, the American Council on Education assigned a different color to each major educational discipline, and those colors still hold symbolic meaning on graduation day. So, law graduates typically wear purple, humanities graduates typically wear white, and medical graduates typically wear green. Make sure the accessories, like the stole, that you purchase are in the correct color so you match the other graduates of your program on graduation day and properly showcase the degree you worked so hard to obtain.


Unlike the core elements of the graduation costume, including the cap and gown, graduation stoles come in many styles. All stoles, no matter the style, are designed to be worn draped around the neck. Common styles include plain stoles, which have a V-shape in the back and hang loose in the front, and V-stoles, which slip over the head and have V-shapes in the front and back. The style you choose should adhere to the specific rules of the institution you are graduating from. 


As long as your institution allows graduates to wear personalized stoles, you can use your stole to truly customize your graduation outfit. Many graduates choose embroidered stoles that have information about their graduation year, sorority or fraternity, and honors awards. Stoles can often be edged in a complementary color that represents something important to the graduate, like a minor from a different discipline. Some graduates wear stoles that represent their cultural roots rather than their degree. So long as you follow your institution's policies, your personalized stole will be welcome and celebrated during your graduation ceremony.

To learn more about graduation stole types, colors, and personalization options, reach out to an academic clothing supplier in your area.