Commencement FAQs

What is the difference between commencement and graduation? add

Commencement ceremonies are the services held in May each year. These are the ceremonies in which the achievement of the degree is recognized and celebrated by the college and the students’ friends and family.

Graduation is the process of being awarded a degree. All students wishing to graduate must apply for graduation by the application deadline. Applying for graduation is a college requirement that must be met by each student wishing to graduate. If you do not apply for graduation, you have not met all your degree requirements.

What do I wear and where do I get it? add

- All participants must wear academic regalia
- Caps, gowns, and tassels are available at the Campus Bookstore
- The tassel is worn on the right side of the cap until the end of the commencement ceremony   when graduates are instructed to shift the tassel to the left side
- It is recommended that you take your regalia out of the bag and place it on a hanger a few days before your ceremony in order to decrease the wrinkles
- Caps may be decorated as long as it is in good taste

Can I participate in commencement if I have not completed all my requirements? add

Only students who have applied for graduation before the deadline are allowed to participate in the commencement ceremonies.

Can I participate in a different ceremony other than the one for my respective degree? add

In the event you have met requirements for more than one degree you may choose the ceremony in which you will participate.

Can a military student wear their dress uniform in lieu of the cap and gown? add

Students in the military must also wear academic regalia. Uniforms may be worn underneath the regalia.

Is there a commencement rehearsal? add

No, there is no rehearsal for commencement. Please arrive early before the scheduled start time for check-in and lineup.

What time should I arrive for commencement? add

You should arrive two (2) hours prior to the ceremony in which you plan to attend.

I walked in the ceremony, does that mean I graduated? add

No. Participation in a commencement ceremony does not imply or infer the awarding of a degree at the time of the commencement ceremony; a final degree audit must be completed before a degree is officially awarded.

Why won’t I get my diploma at commencement? I have completed my degree. add

Degrees are not officially awarded until after the commencement ceremonies. Diplomas will be mailed approximately 3-4 weeks after the official close of the Spring semester. Transcripts with degree information are available approximately 3-5 business days after the close of the Spring semester.

*All obligations (fees, fines, transcripts, etc.) with the college must be cleared before diplomas will be issued.