U N E students at graduation wear gowns bearing the colors of their academic programs

The history of the academic gown goes back to the 12th century. During this period everyone — men and women, royalty, lay folk, clerics, tradesmen and students — wore long flowing robes. The apparel varied in elegance according to the rank and wealth of the owner, from simple rough worsteds to rich gold brocades wrought with tassels and trimmed with colorful velvet and rich furs. During this period the first organized bodies of learning were formed. From the gowns worn in the "universities" of the period have evolved the academic costumes of today.

For more information about the history of commencement regalia see The Pomp Behind the Circumstance.

Undergraduate Students

UNE undergraduates dress in a traditional black gown with a cap and tassel. Individual cords and sashes may be worn to signify academic honors and/or membership in honor societies.

Graduate Students

Dressed in black robes, caps/tams and tassels, graduate students wear hoods bearing the colors of their respective academic programs. Many programs have separate hooding ceremonies in the week prior to the actual graduation ceremony.


Graduating students may purchase caps, gowns, tassels and Master's hoods at the UNE Bookstore on each campus. Regalia will be available for purchase beginning April 3.

DO students rent their regalia (tam/cap, gown, tassel and hood) through the COM Office of Recruitment, Student & Alumni Services; that office can be reached at (207) 602-2329 or via email at Pharm.D., D.M.D, DPT, and Ed.D. students rent their regalia (tam, gown, tassel and hood) through the Office of Graduate & Professional Student Affairs; that office can be reached at (207) 221-4212 or via email at

Additional information about regalia or purchasing rented regalia after commencement can be found on the UNE Bookstore website associated with your campus of study. Once you're there, click on "SEE MORE ANNOUNCEMENTS AND EVENTS" near the bottom of the page.

Graduates are reminded to open regalia packages ahead of time to ensure a proper fit and to check that all items are present. Regalia is NOT available for purchase on the Bookstore website. Students away from campus on clinical rotations, online students, or those not able to purchase regalia in person should call the Bookstore at either of its locations: Biddeford Campus (207) 602-2219 or Portland Campus (207) 221-4255.