For commencement, the university photographers are generally focused on what happens on the floor of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. But before the music and speeches, before the confetti and dancing, cameras and lenses record the jubilation of the build up as graduates, faculty and honored guests prepare for the event.
Friends celebrate outside the Superdome.
Family members rush to get photographs of their graduates on this momentous day.
Smiles are as abundant as academic regalia before entering the Dome.
Dame Helen Mirren goes over her commencement speech in the robing room shortly before processing onto the the floor of the Superdome.
New Orleans jazz legend and Tulane honorary degree recipient from 2007, Ellis Marsalis, gets some assistance with his tassel.
Teaching award recipients, from left, Janet C. Hoeffel, Elisabeth McMahon and Victor Moll talk before the ceremony.