Information for Graduates

What grads need to know…

Is there a limit to the number of people I can invite to Commencement?

No! The more, the merrier!

However, if the ceremony must be moved indoors due to inclement weather, some of your guests (any number beyond four) will need to view the ceremony from an “overflow” location in another campus building. You will receive four tickets to provide to guests to use in case of inclement weather.

Do my family and friends need tickets for anything?

Attending Commencement is free and tickets are only required if the ceremony is moved indoors.

Graduating seniors will be provided their allotted tickets to distribute to friends and family in the event of inclement weather. Tickets will be given to graduating seniors at rehearsal.

Can I walk with my class if I haven’t completed my requirements for graduation?

Generally, students are expected to have completed all degree requirements prior to the commencement ceremony and will graduate on the date of the ceremony. Students who have completed all degree requirements but have not cleared outstanding financial obligations to the College may participate in the commencement ceremony but will not receive their diplomas or transcripts until the outstanding financial obligations have been met. Students who have not completed all of the degree requirements will be permitted to participate in the commencement ceremony under the following “walker” policy:

  • Written Walker Petitions are approved by the APRC and the faculty approves the list prior to graduation. The petition must present a detailed, realistic plan for completion of the degree, have the signatures of all faculty members involved in the plan and the student’s academic advisor, and be submitted the Registrar before the end of the seventh week of spring term. The Registrar and the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs will make an initial determination on the petition and forward to the faculty any petitions deserving consideration;
  • The senior project must be credited by the time in spring quarter that all grades for graduating seniors are due (as published in the spring academic calendar);
  • The remaining work may consist of not more than four academic credits or one term of co-op with the associated Work Portfolio course;
  • The plan for completing the outstanding work demonstrates that the work will be finished during the summer following the commencement ceremony in question, except in circumstances indicated below.

Students who have not completed all degree requirements and are approved to participate in the commencement ceremony are expected to complete all requirements during the summer term following commencement. They will have a graduation date effective the summer co-op ending date. However, in certain circumstances, these students can receive a graduation date effective the fall co-op ending date. These circumstances include:

  • Students who need the fall term as their final co-op term;
  • Students who must register for their remaining academic credits during fall term;
  • Students who cannot submit the appropriate crediting documents on a timely basis in order to graduate at the end or summer term.

The Registrar will make the final determination of whether or not the students approved to participate in commencement prior to completing requirements have satisfied the graduation requirements.

Any student who will not be able to meet all the requirements for graduation as stated in this policy or the conditions for being a walker will not be considered for graduation until the following year.

What if I’m not planning to walk at Commencement?

Please notify the Registrar’s Office today if you are not planning to participate in the Commencement ceremony. You may send an email request to with your current address to have your diploma mailed to you, or to request that the registrar notify you when the diplomas will be ready for pickup.

Will I receive my actual diploma during Commencement?

Diplomas will not be issued at the ceremony. 

Your official diploma should be available approximately six weeks after graduation.  Those of you who submitted local addresses on the graduation application will be notified when available, all others will be mailed to the address submitted. 

What should I wear for the ceremony?

Stoles will be worn in lieu of the traditional cap and gown. The stoles will be placed on graduates as they step forward to receive their diploma, along with any honor cords that have been earned.

Clothing and shoes are required to be worn during the ceremony, and it is recommended that seniors dress in business casual or more formal attire. 

Will we have a rehearsal?

Commencement rehearsal will be held on Friday, June 21, at 2:00 PM.

Graduates and ceremony participants should assemble in the Herndon Gallery in South Hall at 1:45 PM.

If weather permits, we will proceed to the location for which the commencement ceremony is planned under the tent. In the case of inclement weather, we will hold rehearsal in South Gym in the Wellness Center.

If it is raining, please report directly to South Gym. The rehearsal is mandatory for those planning to walk in the ceremony.

When and where do seniors line up for graduation?

Seniors should line up in the Herndon Gallery no later than 9:00 AM on the morning of Commencement.

How far in advance will we be notified if Commencement is moved inside?

The decision to move Commencement inside will be made one day prior to the morning of the ceremony.

The rain location is the South Gym of the Wellness Center. Guests without a ticket are invited to view the ceremony via a live stream inside Studio B in the Wellness Center and McGregor 113. 

How can I ensure my name is pronounced correctly at Commencement?

Please contact the Registrar’s Office to register any name changes or to clarify pronunciation or preferred pronouns. Please note that changes received less than 30 days before Commencement may not be reflected in the Commencement programs and other materials that must be produced in advance.

Name pronunciations will be reviewed/confirmed at the rehearsal.

What should I bring to Commencement?

Graduates should bring their tickets in case Commencement is moved indoors because of inclement weather. Beyond that, the less brought to the ceremony, the better.

Avoid bringing purses and bags, if possible, or have a family member hold these items. Cell phones and other mobile devices should be set on “silent.”

What should I NOT bring to Commencement?

Graduates and guests should refrain from bringing signs, umbrellas, and other items that may block the view of anyone watching the ceremony. Graduates and guests also should avoid purses and large bags, if possible, and never leave items unattended. The use of bullhorns, air horns, and other disruptive devices is also prohibited.

However, cheering and clapping for a graduate is encouraged! This is an important day and we want everyone to have an enjoyable experience.

Will news releases about graduates be forwarded to hometown newspapers?

Yes, unless you request that the College not share news about you. Contact Communications if you have questions.

Will a photographer take my photo as I receive my diploma?

A photographer will take pictures of all graduates as they are handed their diplomas.

An information card will be given to each student prior to Commencement. To receive ordering information, you will need to fill out the card with a current email address. (Please do not use your email address as this account will be deactivated after graduation).