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"Dr. Rich" Cap and Gown Loan Program

the entrance of the luminaries to the 2016 graduate school graduation ceremony

Graduating soon? Does expense of a cap and gown make you want to skip your graduation ceremony?

Never fear: the Graduate and Professional Student Senate's "Dr. Rich" Cap and Gown Loan Program (named for GPSS's previous Director of Finance, Richard Rodrigues, who began the program) will loan a limited number of graduation gowns and caps to graduate students participating in our upcoming graduation ceremonies. Go to that graduation ceremony and bask in the glory of your accomplishments!

Update for Spring 2021:  Now that we will have in-person commencement events, we are back on! BUT, our supplies do remain limited. There will be no cost for rental this year, but remember the gown must be dry-cleaned before return (and have the plastic bag still on and the receipt attached). A hold will be placed on your Hokie account until the gown is returned to the GLC.

This year, since there won't be a hooding ceremony, you can participate without a hood (which you would normally have to puchase on your own). In addition, Master's students may use the old or the current version of the VT graduation gown, just so long as it is black.



Pre-COVID Details for program are below.

During non-pandemic times: Each student who wins the lottery will be eligible, in exchange for a $10 fee, to rent a gown in their respective size (based on their height) AND one cap (caps are one-size-fits-all). The hood and tassel are NOT provided by GPSS and should be purchased by the student. Since this is a loan program, students will be held fully responsible for returning the gown and cap in fair condition to the GPSS. Please keep in mind that these caps and gowns may have been used in previous years, but have been cleaned prior to hand out. Remember, however, this is only a loan program.

Application openings and deadlines for each semester will be announced on this page, and on our Facebook page, our Twitter account, and through the weekly Graduate School listserv email.

You will be charged $100 if: you do not return your cap and gown by the closing date, or if the cap and gown are damaged and no longer usable.

Note that we accept CASH OR CHECK ONLY as forms of payment. If you do choose to pay with a check, be sure to make it out to "Treasurer of Virginia Tech" - this is the only way your check will be accepted.

Please be aware: Application to the lottery does not guarantee you a cap and gown


  • Cost: $10 rental, payable Cash or Check ONLY (Check MUST BE made out to “Treasurer of Virginia Tech”)
  • What you get: One cap and one gown (either Master’s or PhD) necessary for commencement. We DO NOT provide tassels, hoods, or other required items
  • What you need to do: Click the link on the right to be taken to our qualtrics survey to submit your lottery application.
  • Lottery is first come, first served!
  • When: Watch this page for updates on relevant dates!

Questions?  Please email us!

Example Volunteer opportunities: examine existing inventory for quality, update inventory, move new caps/gowns into circulation, clean existing caps/gowns, distribute caps/gowns to successful lottery applications, collect caps/gowns from graduates after commencement.