Students wishing to graduate are REQUIRED to complete an application to graduate. You are strongly encouraged to meet with your adviser before applying in order to ensure eligibility for graduation.
Please direct any questions to Valerie Taylor in the Registrar’s Office at 540-665-4537 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The names of all August, December and May graduates will be automatically included in the commencement program.
Please note: The final list of names for the commencement program is compiled and released to the printer shortly after the deadline, so exceptions cannot be made. If you apply to graduate after the application deadline, your name may not appear in the printed program due to printing deadlines.
If you would like your name to be EXCLUDED from the printed commencement program, you must contact the Valerie Taylor in the Registrar’s Office by April 1 at email@example.com.
Degree Conferral & Diploma
The degree conferral date is the last day of each term. Verification of conferral eligibility may be completed within four weeks after the last day of the term. Your transcript will not show the degree conferral until this verification has been completed. If your eligibility for conferral cannot be determined within that 4-week period, you’ll be required to reapply for graduation in the subsequent term.
To increase accuracy and to prevent damage to the diplomas, Shenandoah University does not distribute official degrees at the ceremony. Your official degree will be mailed to the address you provided within 6-8 weeks after graduation, as long as you’ve met all necessary obligations and requirements. During the ceremony, you will be given a mock diploma scroll.
Not all students may be able to complete degree requirements in time for commencement. You may participate in the commencement ceremony at any time after your degree requirements have been met or as specified by the guidelines in the Course Catalog. Shenandoah University’s commencement ceremony is scheduled in May. You may “walk” in the May ceremony if you have attempted enough credits required for completion of your degree program minus six in the semester of commencement. Exceptions may be approved only by the Provost.
You will only be eligible for class honors if you have fulfilled all of your degree requirements. Honors for the commencement program in May are calculated at the end of the fall semester prior to May graduation. If you complete your requirements after the May ceremony, honors will be calculated at the end of your final term and will appear on your transcript and diploma. Your honors will also be eligible for inclusion in the commencement program the following May.
You may participate in one commencement ceremony for each degree earned, and your name may be printed one time — for each degree earned— in the commencement program.
Graduating students who plan to participate in university commencement must RSVP no later than April 15. This not only ensures that there is adequate seating provided for our graduates and their guests, but also allows graduates to access the ticketing system. Graduates can easily RSVP online using the Graduate RSVP Form.
Graduates wishing to participate in the May commencement ceremony or their individual school ceremony will need a cap and gown. You may pick up your cap and gown at no charge during Grad Finale in April or any time after the event at the university bookstore during their regular business hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Students DO NOT need to order caps, gowns, or hoods. They are all ordered in bulk at no additional cost. If you believe you will need a special size – please contact the Bookstore at 540-665-4523.
Questions? Contact the Bookstore at 540-665-4523 or Shenandoah@bkstr.com.
Official Shenandoah University Doctoral Gowns
Doctoral students have the opportunity to purchase official Shenandoah doctoral gowns from the university bookstore. This gown was created to resemble the Presidential regalia worn by Dr. Tracy Fitzsimmons. It is a valuable investment, particularly if you plan to remain in academia.
A sample of the regalia is available in the university bookstore. This regalia is custom-made and takes approximately six to eight weeks to ship.
The university will honoring veteran and active duty faculty, staff and students by presenting them with a special red, white and blue honor cord to be worn during the university’s Commencement ceremony. Please present a copy of your active duty orders or DD-214 to Niccole Gatliff in the Registrar’s Office no later than April 15. Cords can be picked up from Niccole after May 1 or at Commencement lineup.
Honor Cords and Graduate Hoods
Gold cords in recognition of Latin honors will be distributed during graduate line-up. Honors will be calculated based on your fall GPA for the commencement program. The honors listed on your transcript will be based on your cumulative GPA. Honor cords are given only to undergraduate students.
Doctoral and master’s students will be hooded during separate ceremonies within their school/division and should wear their hoods during the university’s commencement ceremony.
Graduates are required to attend the Graduate Commencement Rehearsal – with the exception of those who have a final exams during that time – which will be held on Thursday May 16, 2019 from 5:30pm-6:30pm at the James R. Wilkins, Jr. Athletics & Events Center.
Please report in your cap and gown to the football stadium for line-up at 8:30 a.m. A class photo will be taken at 8:45 a.m., weather-permitting.
Please do not bring any valuables, purses, etc., as you will have to carry whatever you bring with you to your seat at the ceremony. Shenandoah is not responsible for items that are lost, damaged or stolen.
A camera drone will be present during line up and used to capture the class photo. Please be aware that the drone will fly over the graduates throughout lineup.
Upon arriving at line-up, graduates will:
- Pick up your reader card and honor cord (if applicable) from the appropriate table;
- See the readers if you have a name you feel is difficult to pronounce, so the readers can make note of the correct pronunciation;
- Complete the back of the reader card;
- Banner carriers should report to the banners table to pick up their appropriate banner.
Once lined up, you are not permitted to leave the line-up site or your designated line. Be sure to use the restroom, etc., prior to reporting to line-up. There will be water available at the line-up site.
Please listen carefully, as you will be lined up based on your school or division and by degree program. Staff members will offer further explanation during line-up and at rehearsal.
Your commencement program will be on your seat at the ceremony site.
There is no “official” dress code for commencement. However, since commencement is a formal ceremony, business casual dress is suggested under your gown. You are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes, as you will be standing and walking for much of the day.
Graduates will be notified regarding important commencement information via the following sources:
- S.U. Email
- S.U. Website
- graduation mailing sent to the address supplied by the student on their graduation application
Please continue to check these sources for important updates.