Graduation vs Commencement
Students who will complete requirements for a degree in a given semester must apply to graduate. “Applying to graduate” means you want your degree conferred and officially recorded on your academic transcript. Applying to graduate does not mean you are committing to participate in commencement, the graduation ceremony held in May, however you may select that as an option on the application.
If you apply to graduate (receive your degree) in August, December, January or May, you are automatically eligible to participate in the May graduation ceremony. You do not need to make a separate application to participate.
GRADUATION DATES AND APPLICATION DEADLINES
|Fall 2020||Mar 16 – |
|Jan 22, 2021||Dec 11, 2020||Mar 5, 2021|
|Winter 2021||Oct 19 – |
|Jan 22, 2021||Jan 8, 2021||Mar 5, 2021|
|Spring 2021||Oct 26 - Apr 23||May 27, 2021||May 13, 2021||Aug 18, 2021|
|Summer 2021 (Early)||Feb 28 - June 4||Jun 22, 2021||Jun 22, 2021||Jul 2, 2021|
|Summer 2021 (Late)||Feb 28 - Aug 10||Sep 10, 2021||Aug 24, 2021||Oct 29, 2021|
HOW DO I APPLY TO GRADUATE?
Students wishing to apply for graduation can do so by logging into the RCSJ Portal and selecting “Self-Serve.” Once there, select the tab at the top of the page entitled, “Student” and select “Student Records” from the choices provided. From there, select the link labeled, “Apply to Graduate” and complete the online form.
HOW DO I ACKNOWLEDGE MY PARTICIPATION IN COMMENCEMENT?
When you apply to graduate, you will be prompted to identify if you will participate in the May Commencement Ceremony. Although participation in the Commencement Ceremony is not required to confer your degree and receive your diploma, it is highly encouraged.
HOW IS IT DETERMINED THAT I SATISFIED ALL MY DEGREE REQUIREMENTS?
The Office of Academic Advisement will review each application that is submitted and evaluate the students’ transcripts to ensure that all obligations have been met which includes the total number of earned credits, the correct number of institutional credits, GPA, and course completion. Aside from meeting all the academic requirements, students must not have any holds on their account and ensure that all financial obligations have been met, including the graduation fee. The Director of Academic Advisement will notify students via their RCSJ email the outcome of their application once it is reviewed.
WHAT IS A GRADUATION FEE?
Once your Application to Graduate is completed a $65 graduation fee will be applied to your account. This fee will cover the costs of processing and ordering your diploma. Students who do not pay this fee will not receive their diploma, nor be able to participate in the Commencement Ceremony. Students earning a Certificate of Achievement (COA) will not incur a Graduation Fee.
WHEN WILL I RECEIVE MY DIPLOMA?
Dates to pick up your diploma will be available on the RCSJ website and are listed on the other side of this document. Diplomas that are not picked-up by the announced dates will be mailed to the mailing address on file.
Students who are graduating with honors should contact their designated representative if they are interested in purchasing commencement regalia.
|Phi Theta Kappa Advisors: |
Shawn Rutter & Jackie Thomasson
|Business Honor Society Advisor: Danielle Morganti|
|Paralegal Honor Society Advisor: Lucy McClain||Mathematics Honor Society Advisor: |
TIPS AND HELPFUL HINTS
Students are encouraged to use the Degree Evaluation tool in the RCSJ portal to assist them in determining the completion of their degree. It is suggested that all students work closely with their assigned Academic Advisor to determine eligibility for degree completion. Students who are receiving multiple degrees or certificates must complete an application to graduate for each degree that is sought. High school students can not be awarded a degree until after their high school diploma is earned.
All questions and concerns regarding graduation should be sent to email@example.com. You may also visit the Office of Academic Advisement at rcsj.edu/gc/advisement for additional information and/or to make an appointment with your Academic Advisor.