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The recruit graduation ceremony, also known as Pass-In-Review, is a formal military ceremony which honors your recruit’s hard work and dedication to a new way of life, and ties together the future of the Navy with our long-held Naval traditions and customs.

This page includes all of the information you will need to visit your recruit for graduation, including the schedule of events and directions to the Recruit Family Welcome Center. Please review the information carefully. If you have additional questions not covered in these pages or in the Frequently Asked Questions, you may get in touch with RTC via the contact page.


STEP 1: Fill Out the Security Access Form



GUEST SECURITY ACCESS FORM: If you are going to be attending the graduation ceremony, please fill out the security access form (maximum four guests per form; use the three-guest maximum form when there are 11 or more divisions graduating) according to the instructions on the form and return to your recruit by mail. A link to download the form is located at the bottom of this page. Children 2 years of age or younger do not count toward the maximum number of guests and do not need to be listed. All guests 3 years of age and older must be listed on the access list, including military guests (active duty, reserve, retired, or veteran).

ONLY YOUR RECRUIT CAN CHANGE THE GRADUATION CEREMONY ACCESS LIST: Your recruit will be able to make changes to the access list. The last opportunity to make changes will be the week before graduation. If there is a change to be made to the access list (such as a name spelled incorrectly, name-swap, etc.) please communicate any changes to your recruit by mail well in advance. RTC staff cannot change these names or release the names of those on the list. Please do not call to verify receipt of security forms— only your recruit can verify that.

STEP 2: Plan Your Travel Itinerary

HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS & TRANSPORTATION: The U.S. Navy does not provide accommodations, air or vehicle transportation, or shuttle services. However, the Naval Station Great Lakes Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Department has teamed up with the local community to assist those attending graduation ceremonies with helpful resources when making travel arrangements. Please refer to the following website for assistance with hotel accommodations, transportation services, area attractions/restaurants, care packages and much more. You may also visit or call 847-688-2020, 316 for further details. 

STEP 3: Pick Up Your Tickets for the Graduation Ceremony
(This is Off-Base)

TICKETING: Everyone who is planning on attending a graduation ceremony must personally obtain a ticket, which will be distributed at the Recruit Family Welcome Center the week of your recruit's graduation. Tickets are free of charge, but you must have valid photo ID to obtain your ticket (driver's license, state ID, military ID, passport; for minors, a student ID, driver's permit, SSN card, birth certificate). Once you receive your ticket do not lose it, as this will be the only ticket you will receive. These tickets are not transferable and are the only means to access the base for attendees.

WELCOME CENTER ADDRESS/GPS - THIS IS AN OFF-BASE LOCATION: Navy Exchange (NEX) Burkey Mall, 2650 Green Bay Road, North Chicago, IL 60088 (Do not use generic terms such as NEX, Recruit Training Command or Naval Station Great Lakes).


Day before Graduation: 10:00 AM to 7:30 PM
Day of Graduation: 5:30 AM to 8:30 AM

Plan accordingly so each person can check-in to receive a ticket for the graduation ceremony. If you don't have a ticket, you will not be allowed entry to the base. Tickets will only be issued to guests who the graduating recruit has verified will be attending. Please ensure those who check-in to receive their graduation tickets are the same as those who were listed on security form.


STEP 4: Attending the Graduation Ceremony

ARRIVING: Once the gates open to the public, it will take some time to clear security at the gate, so please plan accordingly. Visitors 18+ will be required to present valid photo ID (driver's license, state ID card, passport, military ID card). Minors who can't produce one of the forms of ID listed above must present either a school ID, driver's permit, copy of birth certificate, or Social Security card.


6:30 am: RTC gate opens to guests.
6:30 am: Ceremonial drill hall doors open to guests.
9:00 am: All guests must be seated. Ceremonial drill hall doors close, no further entry for guests.
9:00 am: Pass-In-Review commences.
9:20 am: Divisions arrive.
10:30 am: Pass-In-Review concludes.
Please plan on arriving at least 1.5 hours before the ceremony, which begins promptly at 0900.

WALKING ON BASE: Pedestrians may walk onto the base using the gate adjacent to the METRA train station (Gate 8). Shuttles, taxis, and shared rides from hotels will drop you off in the parking lot adjacent to Gate 8. Once on base, approximately a quarter mile from the gate to the entrance of RTC's Visitor Center (USS YORKTOWN).

DRIVING ON BASE: A driver's license, vehicle registration, proof of insurance (or rental car agreement), and graduation ticket must be ready to present to security at all access points. Once on base, attendees will be directed to park in the parking structure adjacent to RTC's Visitor Center (USS YORKTOWN).

Please obey the following while driving on base:

1.  No cell phone usage while driving on base.
2.  Seat belts are required for all drivers/passengers at all times.
3.  Motorcycle drivers/riders must have proper protective clothing/equipment such helmet, long pants, long-sleeved shirt, and over the ankle hard-soled boots.
4.  Recent graduates are prohibited from operating motor vehicles, including motorcycles, and are not allowed to be a passenger on a motorcycle. 

MULTIPLE SEARCHES POSSIBLE: All graduation attendees are required to enter through RTC's Visitor Center, for security screening, prior to entering the ceremony itself. Every person, bag, and vehicle on the base is subject to search. Metal detectors and other security devices are in use onboard RTC.

The uniform for graduation for both active duty, retirees and graduating Sailors is service dress uniform or service equivalent with ribbons and cover as all military personnel remain covered while in our ceremonial drill hall. 

ITEMS PERMITTED INTO GRADUATION CEREMONY: Small bag/personal item (purse, satchel, etc.), small diaper bag, small camera bag, and personal wheelchair or walker. Strollers and car seats are allowed but discouraged due to space limitations (you may leave them in your car). 

ITEMS NOT PERMITTED INTO GRADUATION CEREMONY: Large bags, backpacks, luggage, posters, signs/banners, large tripods, gift bags of any size, and flowers. Alcohol, illegal drugs, knives, and all other weapons will be confiscated by security. Any person found with these items will not be permitted to enter the ceremony.

NO WEAPONS: Weapons possession on federal installations is highly regulated and those in violation are subject to arrest and prosecution.

LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS SAFETY ACT: If you are law enforcement and are required to carry a weapon at all times as a condition of your service: please contact Great Lakes Police Department, Deputy Chief Knapp at or (847) 688-5555 well in advance of your visit to meet requirements for doing so on a military installation.

Sailors are allowed to spend time off base (liberty) with their family following the graduation ceremony. The amount of time allowed off base depends upon where your Sailor is going for follow-on training. Speak with your Sailor for specific liberty information. The Navy is required to transport Sailors to their next command. Sailors may not travel to their next command in your vehicle or with tickets purchased by themselves or by you. 
Liberty comes with rules and regulations Sailors must follow. While on liberty, RTC Sailors will not consume alcohol (regardless of age), use tobacco products or drugs, visit tattoo or piercing parlors, hitchhike, or drive a motor vehicle. Sailors must remain in the uniform of the day at all times. The Sailor must be in the division compartment no later than 2100. Sailors are not permitted to ride in private vehicles to their barracks from the main gate, so be sure to return your Sailor to the main gate with enough time for them to walk back.
The day after graduation, your Sailor will have liberty from 0800 to 2100. Sailors who are late will be subject to disciplinary actions that could impact subsequent liberty. Upon return from liberty, all bags will be inspected for contraband. Contraband includes, but is not limited to, drugs, alcohol, tobacco products (or associated paraphernalia), medication (unless prescribed by a military doctor), food, magazines or papers, and portable electronic devices. You may meet your departing Sailor at the airport the morning they fly to follow-on training to say goodbye. You can give the Sailor any small items he or she may want for “A” School (laptop, a few items of civilian clothing, etc.) but remember your Sailor is already carrying a seabag, garment bag, and backpack.
Thank you for helping us complete the mission of liberty while keeping the Navy’s newest Sailors safe. 

Newly graduated Sailors who will attend “A” school (advanced training) in Great Lakes, Illinois, will most likely transfer immediately after graduation. Those who will attend “A” school out of state may depart the following day after graduation. Please discuss liberty with your Recruit during their phone calls home and be sure to ask when they are departing for their next assignment. RTC Public Affairs does not have access to individual schedules. Only your Recruit will know their specific liberty schedule.

If you did not receive the security form from your recruit or you misplaced it, please download a new form and return to your recruit ASAP for proper graduation ceremony access. The security form you received must be filled out according to the instructions on the form and returned to your recruit, which will ensure the recruits graduation ceremony attendees are properly accounted for. If this form is not received, you will not be able to attend the graduation ceremony.

Due to safety regulations regarding building capacity, a maximum of four guests per recruit are allowed to attend the indoor ceremony in the drill hall. This is reduced to three guests per Recruit when 11 or more divisions are graduating. There are no exceptions. 


Map to Graduation Ceremony

Graduation Dates and Divisions

Click here to see the list of Training Group Grad Dates and Divisions.

Departure from Recruit Training Command

Newly graduated Sailors who will attend “A” school (advanced training) in Great Lakes, Illinois, will most likely transfer immediately after graduation. Those who will attend “A” school out of state may depart the following day after graduation. Please discuss liberty with your Recruit during their phone calls home and be sure to ask when they are departing for their next assignment. RTC Public Affairs does not have access to individual schedules. Only your Recruit will know their specific liberty schedule.

Graduation Live Stream

Our graduation ceremony will be live streamed Thursday at 0900 Central. Use either our Facebook or YouTube link to view.

Honor Graduates