United States Air Force Academy

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Prepare for Take Off


Graduation Week is traditionally comprised of many activities and events across the U.S. Air Force Academy. Cadets and their guests take part in receptions, awards ceremonies, baccalaureate services, concerts, parades, air demonstrations, and commissioning ceremonies. The week culminates at Falcon Stadium with the iconic graduation ceremony. Commencement speakers often include the President of the United States, Vice President, Secretary of Defense, Secretary of the Air Force and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. At the close of the ceremony, cadets are dismissed and ceremoniously toss their caps into the air. Cheers and celebration are quickly silenced by the roar of the legendary Thunderbirds flying overhead to honor the graduating class.

The Class of 2021 Graduation Ceremony took place Wednesday, May 26, 2021 at Falcon Stadium. The 20th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Milley, served as the commencement speaker. For a list of graduation week events, click here.

Highlights from the Class of 2021

Graduation Ceremony Video

On May 26, 2021, 1,019 newly commissioned Second Lieutenants took the Oath of Office to begin their careers with U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force. To watch the iconic ceremony from beginning to end, click here.

Class of 2021 Rewind Video

From Basic Cadet Training to jumping in the fountains after their final exams, watch the Class of 2021 journey from cadets to Airmen and Guardians, click here

Graduation Ceremony Pictures

Our team of professional photographers captured hundreds of pictures from Falcon Stadium that are high resolution and free to download. To save to your device, select each individual picture and click the down arrow icon located in the bottom right corner and then select the preferred size. To view pictures from the event, click here.

Graduation Award Winners

On May 24, 2021, we honored outstanding graduating cadets for superior military, academic and athletic performance. To see pictures from the ceremony, click here. For a list of winners, click here.

Commencement Program

To download the Graduation Commencement Program for the Class of 2021, click here.

How to Prepare

  • COVID-19 Mitigation
    • The U.S. Air Force Academy is committed to the health and safety of our visitors and requires everyone on Academy grounds to follow Federal, Department of Defense, state, and local COVID guidelines while on the military installation. Your expected cooperation and strict adherence to these policies is what has made it possible to hold Graduation 2021 in person.
    • In support of updated Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines released on May 13, guests who are fully vaccinated (at least two weeks beyond their final dose) are not required to wear a mask indoors or outdoors at Department of Defense facilities. Guests who are not fully vaccinated must wear masks. All guests (fully vaccinated and not fully vaccinated) must wear masks when on federal transportation, to include base shuttle buses. Cloth masks that comply with CDC guidelines must cover the nose and mouth, and be worn continually except for brief periods of time when eating and drinking. This policy is in effect indoors and outdoors, including at Falcon Stadium, and will be strictly enforced. For guests who cannot tolerate a cloth mask due to a medical condition, a face shield is an acceptable alternative.
    • Visit the State of Colorado COVID-19 website for more information on state mask guidance.
  • Base Entry

    USAFA is not open to the public due to the ongoing COVID pandemic and public health emergency but will be open to guests of the Class of 2021 with a graduation ticket. Each cadet in the Class of 2021 will be permitted eight (8) tickets for the Graduation Ceremony in Falcon Stadium on 26 May, 2021. These tickets will serve as base access during graduation week. All guests must show a government-issued ID and a digital Graduation 2021 ticket to gain entry. Digital tickets will be sent to all graduating cadets no later than May 14, 2021 for distribution. If you have not received your ticket, please contact your cadet.

  • Cadet Area Access

    Access to the Cadet Area (Terrazzo, dormitories, academic departments, and athletic facilities) will be limited to guests with wristbands on Tuesday, May 25 from 10:00am – 4:30pm. Guests who are accompanying their Cadet to an awards ceremony or a commissioning ceremony inside the Cadet Area are exempt from this restriction. Please note that transportation to the Cadet Area will be unavailable during these hours.

  • Security Procedures

    For information about graduation week security measures, visit the Graduation Week Security page.

  • Graduation Stadium and Parade Field Policy

    For information about items allowed, not allowed, and fan code of conduct in Falcon Stadium and Stillman Field, visit the Graduation Stadium and Parade Field Policy page.

  • Dress Codes

    For information about dress codes for various events, visit the Grad Week Dress Codes page.

  • Handicapped and Hearing Impaired Guests

    For information about special accommodations for handicapped and hearing impaired guests, visit the Handicapped and Hearing Impaired Guests page.

  • Graduation Week Maps

    For graduation week maps, visit the Graduation Week Maps page.

Contact Us

Public Affairs
Phone: (719) 333-7731

Parents’ Liaison
Phone: (719) 333-3828

Media Relations
Phone: (719) 333-7731