Annual Events at SU

Annual events unite our diverse community at Seattle University. They establish a sense of belonging, uplift our Ignatian values and Redhawk spirit, and celebrate who we are and what we strive to be together.

Learn more about Seattle University's annual events below.

Fall Quarter Events

Fall Welcome serves to invite our new students from Summer and Fall as well as returning students back to campus. Events include specific activities and sessions for your cohort, as well as some combined events so you can get to know one another.  For the most updated schedule and information, check out the Welcome Events page provided by Orientation Programs!

New Student Convocation is an important rite of passage for new students at Seattle University. As your first SU academic ceremony, we celebrate the start of your journey. This year the event will take place as a part of Fall Welcome. Please be sure to read this year's common text, Dear America, before the event so you can engage in discussion with SU faculty and your peers. You'll hear from campus leaders like the Seattle University President, Provost and student body President.

At Seattle University, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved and build community. Come learn more about one of our 175+ clubs and organizations and meet with representatives from various University departments and off-campus partners. The annual Fall Involvement Fair will be hosted in the campus Quad and will take place the first full week of classes.  Make sure to check out ConnectSU for the most up to date information on this event.

Seattle University's annual Mass of the Holy Spirit takes place at the Immaculate Conception ChurchA longstanding tradition at Catholic universities around the world, the Mass of the Holy Spirit is an opportunity to ask for God's blessings on the new academic year. 

For one weekend in autumn, families are our special guests. This year, we hope you will join us for our annual family weekend. Whether your student is a freshman or senior, Family Weekend will have programs to enjoy together.  For more information on events held this weekend, check out the Family Weekend website by Parent and Family Engagement.

New Student Retreat is a Seattle U tradition offered by Campus Ministry each fall quarter as a way for first-year and transfer undergraduate students to build community, reflect on their hopes for their journey at SU, and have fun! On New Student Retreat, you'll have the chance to build community in a small group of your peers that will meet throughout fall quarter, to reflect on your journey to and at SU, to mix and mingle with fellow new students across similarities and difference at a handful of virtual large group gatherings, and to have some fun while you're at it!

Every year, we invite our SU alumni and campus communities to celebrate our University values and campus spirit through a series of events. Whether it's the annual homecoming parade, alumni reunions, the nomination of our student Homecoming Court, Day of Service, or cheering on our Redhawks on the basketball court, we hope you'll take an opportunity to join us! 

Kick off the Christmas season, SU-style at the annual Christmas Tree Lighting! Come early and enjoy the festivities in the Student Center, including photos with Santa Claus, arts and crafts, live reindeer and other fun activities. Then head outside with fellow merry-makers for the main event starring our own Seattle University chapel choir leading carols, Rudy the Redhawk and more.

Following the Christmas Tree Lighting, join our Jewish Student Union to celebrate the start of Hanukkah with food, games and fun at the Hanuchaos Party!

Winter Quarter Events

Winter Welcome is your time to get to know your new Redhawk family, prepare for the start of classes, and get involved with the many great opportunities the SU community has to offer. Whether you are a first-year student or transferring to SU, living outside Seattle or on campus, this Winter Welcome is for you! Winter Welcome events are posted in ConnectSU, Seattle University's online involvement platform. Please note that there are some required events for all new students to attend. 


Did you miss the Fall Involvement Fair? Catch the more intimate Winter Involvement Fair, held early in the winter quarter (late January/early February). The Winter Involvement Fair is a great opportunity to meet with club representatives.

Every January, we celebrate the life and legacy of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. We reflect on the lessons he imparted, the dreams he shared, and how we can continue to respond to his call to act in great love. 

Winter Ball is SEAC's annual semi-formal dance. Hundreds of students dress up and go out on the town for a night of music, dancing, laughter, and fun.  Put on your dancing shoes and dance the night away in one of Seattle's many beautiful venues. Past venues include the Museum of Pop Culture, Museum of History and Innovation, the Seattle Art Museum, the Aquarium, and Benaroya Hall. Students have the opportunity to explore a new part of Seattle and have a fun night out with their friends.

Each year Christians around the world gather to pray across denominations for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity to celebrate God’s love and grace and pray for visible Christian unity and cooperation. We invite students, staff, faculty, alumni, and friends of the university to join Campus Ministry and our Christian and Catholic student clubs for our Annual Celebration of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.

An annual service gathering representative from a variety of faith backgrounds to pray and reflect on a commitment to peace and non-violence in our world. 

The International Dinner is hosted by the International Student Center every winter quarter and includes cultural performances and food from around the world! This historic, annual, Seattle University event is entirely student-organized and engages with various student organizations and the local Seattle community!

Rooted in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, since 1990, our Ignatian Silent Retreats offer an opportunity to more deeply experience God’s profound love and great desires for your life. Rooted in the Catholic tradition, these retreats are accessible to students of all traditions. Over four days and three nights, these retreats include thematic talks, daily liturgy, quiet time for prayer and rest, and individual sessions with your own spiritual director. The Ignatian Silent Retreats are located in a beautiful, waterfront setting overlooking the Puget Sound and offer private rooms that invite you into deeper beauty, contemplation, and relationship with God. For more information, contact Megan Kush at 

Join Campus Ministry for one of our Search Retreats during winter and spring quarters! Since 1969, Search has provided students with the opportunity to explore themselves and their sense of the sacred in the context of community. Though the retreat's roots are in the Christian tradition, students of all faith and non-faith backgrounds are welcome to attend and encouraged to show up as they are. 

Spring Quarter Events

Celebrate the end of the academic year with Red Night Out, Seattle University's celebration of the SU community. During the event, we'll recognize student award winners, take the time to reflect on our year together, and of course, have fun. All students, staff, faculty, alumni, community members, family, and friends are invited to join this event which usually happens in May. No RSVP required! 

Join Campus Ministry for one of our Search Retreats! Since 1969, Search has provided students with the opportunity to explore themselves and their sense of the sacred in the context of community. Though the retreat's roots are in the Christian tradition, students of all faith and non-faith backgrounds are welcome to attend and encouraged to show up as they are. 

SEAC's annual Quadstock, Seattle University's biggest event of the year, is an all-day music festival event. Like Seattle’s music scene, Quadstock offers music of all different genres and will have something for everyone. Past performers include AJR, The Thermals, MAX, ok Go, Dev, Macklemore, Ivan & Alyosha, and Saint Motel. 

RedhawkTHON is a year long fundraising effort for Seattle Children's Hospital's Uncompensated Care Fund and Cancer Immunotherapy Research. For 15 years, RedhawkTHON participants have sought a world without pediatric illness. The annual dance marathon celebration is an essential part of the Seattle University experience because it builds community within the student body while providing funds and support for Seattle Children's Hospital. 

Seattle University hosts a variety of senior celebrations leading up to the commencement of the graduating class. These celebrations honor the various sociocultural identities, academic achievements, and leadership experiences of our graduating Redhawks. 

An annual event during Commencement Weekend, Baccalaureate Mass is a celebration for the entire university community to give thanks for our graduating students and bless them as they complete their time at Seattle U, transitioning into the future as bearers of our university mission, leaders for a just and humane world. As a Jesuit university, we observe this in the context of a Catholic Mass, but people from all religious, secular, and spiritual identities are welcome to attend and participate in this meaningful ritual celebrating this significant transition in our students’ lives. Graduating students, family and friends, current students, faculty and staff are all invited.