Presidential Inauguration FAQ

What time is the ceremony?

The inauguration of Dr. Martha Dunagin Saunders as the sixth president of the University of West Florida will begin at 2 p.m. in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts on the UWF campus in the Main Stage Theatre.

The inaugural procession will begin at 1:45 p.m. at the south entrance to the Science and Engineering Building 4. The procession will arrive at the Center for Fine and Performing Arts slightly before 2 p.m.

How long will the ceremony last?

We are expecting the ceremony to run around 75-90 minutes. A reception open to the public will follow the ceremony. It will be held on the grounds of the Center for Fine and Performing Arts.

When should I arrive?

We are expecting a large crowd, so we recommend guests plan to arrive 30 minutes before 2 p.m. to allow time for parking and finding a seat.

What is the attire?

The inauguration of a university president is a prestigious occasion. Please dress accordingly.

Who can attend?

The ceremony is open to the public. We expect current members of the university community including faculty, staff and students to attend. Additionally, members of the community, delegates, alumni and distinguished guests are expected to attend.

What is a Faculty Delegate?

President Martha Saunders invites UWF faculty to serve as delegates of their terminal degree institution. Delegates walk in the Inauguration Procession along with UWF faculty. Full regalia is required for academic participants in the procession.

Serving as a delegate at the installation of new university/college president is a time-honored higher education tradition dating back to the beginning of the university and college system in America. It began as a tradition that university and college presidents invited presidents from other institutions to attend their inauguration. As time progressed it became impractical for presidents to attend all the inauguration ceremonies. Over time Presidents began sending "delegates" to represent their schools.

Presidents being inaugurated have the option of allowing their faculty to serve as "delegates". President Saunders selected this option and has invited UWF faculty to serve, if they wish, as delegates representing their terminal degree institutions.

Since this is a higher education tradition and a well accepted protocol, it is not necessary for faculty to request permission from their school to serve in this capacity. However, if you feel more comfortable, you are welcome to request permission.

Faculty and delegates walk together in the Inauguration Procession as one group. The only difference between faculty and delegate is that the institution name of the delegate is printed in the Inauguration Program.

If faculty do not wish to walk in the procession, they are still invited to attend the ceremony.

Will there be sufficient seating?

Yes, but seating is limited in the Main Stage Theatre. The Music Hall will serve as an overflow room. The ceremony will be live streamed into the Music Hall.

Where can guests find accommodations?

The Accommodations webpage provides hotel information.

Will the ceremony be webcast?

Yes, please visit for the webcast.

Where do I park?

Guests attending the inauguration ceremony can park in Lots J, L and M. Lot K is reserved for delegates and everyone marching in the presidential procession.

Will classes be canceled?

Classes are canceled from 1-4 pm so that faculty and staff may participate in the inauguration events.

Who can attend the reception following the inauguration?

The reception is open to the public. Faculty, students, staff and community can attend. The reception will be held on the grounds of the Center for Fine and Performing Arts.

Do I need to RSVP to attend the ceremony?

No, you do not need to RSVP.

Is the event accessible for people with disabilities?

Yes, there is handicap and wheelchair accessibility in both the Main Stage Theatre and the Music Hall.

Any person requiring special accommodations is requested to advise UWF by contacting ADA Compliance in the Office for Equal Opportunity and Accessibility at 850.474.2518 or 711 (TTY) Florida Telecommunication Relay Service at least 48 hours prior to the event.