Rite of Sankofa

The Rite of Sankofa is an African rite-of-passage ceremony that takes place every May. It is open to all undergraduate, graduate, and professional students graduating in May, August, or December.  The word Sankofa is of West African origin and translates in English to “go back and take,” symbolizing the importance of learning from the past. A main component of this event is to provide students the opportunity to reflect and gather the best of what their past has taught them in order to achieve their full potential as they move forward to begin a new chapter in life.  The ceremony honors not only the graduates, but also those that helped them to get where they are today.  This includes families, mentors, faculty, staff, fellow students, and friends.

2017 Rite of Sankofa is Thursday, May 4th at 6:30 PM in Tate Grand Hall


Register TODAY!

Registration for the Rite of Sankofa is $55. The registration deadline is Monday, March 27, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. Registration includes:  

  • Custom handmade UGA Sankofa stole from Ghana
  • Printed cap and gown graduation photo
  • Commemorative program booklet featuring photo and biographical information
  • Certificate of achievement
  • Two guest tickets (additional seating will be available in Tate Theatre)

The registration process consists of three steps and must happen in sequence:

  1. Payment (online or at the Tate Cashier’s Window)
  2. Photograph at Tate Student Center Card Office
  3. Online Registration

Graduates who choose to participate will need to pay, have their photograph taken, and complete the online registration no later than Monday, March 27, 2017 at 4 p.m. 


Step 1: Payment

Payment for the Rite of Sankofa is $55.  All payments are non-refundable.

To pay online, click here.

To pay in person, visit the Tate Student Center Cashier’s Window.  Acceptable methods of payment include cash, personal check, Bulldog Bucks or major credit card.  Hours of operation are Monday – Friday 9:00-4:00 p.m.


Step 2: Photograph

Please schedule an appointment with the UGA Card Office to have your photo taken at: https://ugacard.youcanbook.me/ 

Rite of Sankofa stole will be at the Card Office for use in your photo. Please note that each student is allotted one photo appointment and one photo; any subsequent sittings and photos will come at your expense.

Step 3: Online Registration

Your registration is not complete until you complete the online registration form. The biographical information you provide here along with your photo, will be featured in the Rite of Sankofa commemorative booklet. 


Graduation Stoles

All participants will receive an original UGA Rite of Sankofa stole from Ghana.

If you are a member of a Greek letter organization, you may purchase a stole representing that organization for an additional fee from the UGA Greek Life Office. You may contact the UGA Greek Life Office at 706.542.4612. Stole availability is limited.


Please contact Multicultural Services and Programs at 706.542.5773 or Jason K. Wallace at jasonw@uga.edu with questions about the Rite of Sankofa Graduation Celebration.

An information session for the Rite of Sankofa Celebration will occur on Friday, March 17th at 1:00 p.m. in The Intersection.  The Intersection is located on the 3rd floor of the Tate Student Center, across from Tate Print and Copy.  Interested graduates are welcome to attend if they wish to receive additional information about this special event.  Attendance at this session is not mandatory for participation.

Rite of Sankofa FAQs

2015 Rite of Sankofa Photos

2016 Rite of Sankofa Photos

Contact MSP



(Fax) 706-542-8478

University of Georgia
404 Memorial Hall
Athens, GA 30602


Jason K. Wallace, Interim Director


Sandra Goolsby, Administrative Assistant

Zach Romo, Graduate Assistant

Ilyssa Padrid, Graduate Assistant



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