A record number of graduates will be throwing their caps into the air Friday as Cal State Bakersfield holds its 49th commencement ceremony. 

The university will award 2,312 bachelor’s degrees, a 28 percent increase from the 1,806 undergraduate degrees awarded last year, according to a press release. Around 1,708 students will participate in the ceremony beginning at 7:30 a.m. at the CSUB Main Soccer Field.

Umbrellas will not be allowed at the ceremony.

The Main Soccer Field holds 11,500, and there will be an additional 5,900 seats available in overflow seating elsewhere on campus, said Jennifer Self, CSUB director of public affairs and communications.

Parking on campus is free on Friday. There are 7,000 parking spaces on campus, so the university encourages car-pooling and ride-sharing to the ceremony.

Traffic controls and road closures will be in place on and around the CSUB campus. Camino Media at Haggin Oaks Boulevard and Scarlet Oak will be closed to through traffic starting at 5 a.m. and will be open only for commencement traffic and parking. Traffic controls will be in place on Stockdale Highway both before and after the ceremony. At the conclusion of the ceremony, additional traffic controls will be established at Gosford Road and Kroll Way.

A hooding ceremony for 348 graduate students was held Wednesday at the CSUB Main Soccer Field. A total of 462 graduate degrees were awarded this academic year, including 12 doctoral degrees in educational leadership, the university's first class of doctoral students.

Ema Sasic can be reached at 661-395-7392. Follow her on Twitter: @ema_sasic.

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