Academic Affairs
August, 2007 Reviewed and Revised June 14, 2022
To establish a policy that governs participation in commencement ceremonies for students who lack coursework for the completion of the baccalaureate degree.

Students are expected to have completed all degree requirements prior to participation in commencement exercises. On occasion students request to participate in a commencement ceremony prior to completion of degree requirements because extenuating circumstances will make participation in a later ceremony impractical. For instance, a student who needs one or two courses in the summer to graduate may request to participate in the spring commencement rather than wait until the following fall ceremony.

This policy may not apply to students enrolled in certain programs of study (i.e., 12-month RN to BSN nursing program).

The following criteria will be used to determine whether a student can participate in the commencement ceremonies and appropriate documentation is required:

  1. The circumstances are truly exceptional, such as a military deployment or unique family situation; and
  2. The student has the required grade point average in the major, minor and overall areas of study to be on track for graduation; and
  3. There is a plan in place for the student to complete the required coursework within the next 6 months.
  1. The student reviews their Program of Study and makes a plan for completing coursework, meeting with an academic advisor as needed.
  2. The student completes the Graduation Application, indicating the desired graduation ceremony.
  3. A Degree Auditor in the Office of the Registrar reviews the student’s record to ensure that the student has met all degree requirements, noting any outstanding requirements.
  4. The student provides evidence of registration for the outstanding classes in the following academic term.
  5. The student also submits to the Registrar a letter and supporting documents stating the extenuating circumstances leading to the request to participate in a ceremony prior to completion of all degree requirements.
  6. The student’s request and supporting documentation is forwarded to the Office of Academic Affairs for consideration.
Academic Affairs will review this policy every five years or sooner as needed.

Universal Policy Governing Participation in Commencement Ceremonies