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FAQ

  • Graduation

    Graduation

    When should I start thinking about graduation?
    As registration approaches for your final semester, you should review your Degree Audit in WebXpress and consult with your academic advisor to determine if your remaining courses can be completed in the upcoming semester. When you register for your final semester, you should submit the application for graduation either through WebXpress or in the Registrar's Office.

    What do I look for in Degree Audit?
    Check your credit summary. "Pending (Anticipated Complete)" means all of your completed classes, all your current classes, and any pre-registered/registered future term classes are in place. In the credits portion of the report (just below "credit summary") you should see "0.00? under the "Remaining" column.

    What if I don't have a "Pending (Anticipated Complete)" status?
    A status of "In Progress" means something is missing. Look for anything in your Degree Audit that has a notation of "Not Met," "1 course needed," "more subjects" and/or any number other than "0.00? under credits "Remaining." If you have questions, contact your academic advisor.

    Why must I apply for graduation?

    Your application for graduation triggers the creation of a graduation record for you. Your name becomes part of a list of potential graduating students. There will be an official review of your academic record to verify that you have met or will meet all academic requirements for your degree program. Following the review of your record, you will receive notification about your graduation status sent to your SU email. You will also be able to receive email communication regarding commencement and other graduation events.

    Do I need to apply for graduation if I do not want to walk across the stage?
    Yes! All eligible graduating students are required to submit an application for graduation.

    Is there a deadline to apply for graduation?

    • May graduates must apply by January 1
    • August graduates must apply by March 1
    • December graduates must apply by August 1

    How do I know if I can walk at Commencement?
    May Commencement: Students who are completing their degree in May (end of spring term) or August (end of summer term) are eligible to participate in the May Commencement ceremony.
    December Commencement: Students who are completing their degree in December (end of fall term) are eligible to participate in the December Commencement ceremony.

    Does walking across the stage mean that I graduated?
    No. Participating in Commencement only means that you walked across the stage. Degrees are awarded only after all required courses are complete with minimum required credits and grades earned for all courses. If we have not received your final grades for all courses including internships and study abroad, or any outstanding transcripts from other colleges, then all requirements have not been met. You will be "graduated" once all final grades have been received and all University and program requirements are complete. Degrees are conferred in May, August, and December.

    How will I know that my degree has been awarded?
    In WebXpress, under "Academic Profile" tab, click on "My Profile" and scroll to the bottom of the page. Your degree information will appear in this section.

    When will I receive my diploma?
    Your diploma will be mailed the month following graduation, once all final grades have been received and all University and program requirements are complete. Diplomas are sent to the address listed on your application for graduation via standard U.S. mail.

  • Commencement For Students

    Commencement for Students

    What time do I need to arrive?
    Please report to Knot Hall, Room 101, about 45 minutes prior to the scheduled start of the ceremony.

    When should my guests arrive?
    Doors to the gym will open one hour before the start of the ceremony. Seating areas are not assigned, and are occupied on a first-come, first-served basis. Encourage your guests to arrive early!

    Will they start without me?
    YES, so don’t be late!

    Where do I go upon arrival?
    You should go to Knott Hall room 101. You will pick up your name card, and line up in order according to the number on your card. There will be SU staff and student marshals in Knott Hall to help with line up and arranging hoods etc.

    Why do we have name cards?
    You will give your name card to the dean of your school when you walk across the stage. The name cards also help keep everyone in the correct order for procession. Master’s students will process alphabetically by program. Bachelor’s students will process alphabetically by school. We put numbers on the cards to make it easy. Simply line up in numerical order. The colors of the name cards reflect the different schools.

    What should I bring with me to Knot Hall 101?
    Bring your cap with the tassel and gown with the hood. (Master’s students will receive the hood during the ceremony.) Please leave flowers, purses, coats, extra shoes or anything else that you might have with your guests.

    What do I wear under my gown?

    • Women – Dress (not longer than the gown) or dark pants, dress shoes or sandals (no flip flops). Have fun with the color of the dress shoes! Be careful that you don’t catch your shoes in the hem of your gown going up and down the stairs.
    • Men – Black or very dark dress pants and dress shoes – no tennis shoes or sandals. – A white dress shirt and tie look really nice against the gown.
    • Honor cords – Only officially recognized honor societies cords or pins may be worn with your gown – no corsages or other things.

    Can I wear anything on my graduation gown?
    You may wear official University pins or cords; no corsages or other things.

    How do I wear the cap?
    Flat on your head – not perched on the back! Bachelor’s students: tassel is on the right and you will move it to the left after receiving your diploma. Master’s students: tassel is on the left and it stays on the left.

    What about caps and the national anthem?

    • Men: Caps should be removed during the National Anthem and Moment of Reflection.
    • Women: leave caps on.

    What is the most important thing about my gown?
    Take it out of the package and hang it up before commencement day! If necessary, iron it.

    Will someone be around to help me get that hood on correctly?
    Yes.

    How do I order announcements and the cap & gown?
    For questions concerning cap & gown and other purchases, please contact the Campus Store.

    When do we enter the gym?
    Students will enter the gym in the line of procession. The line will be led by marshals. Pay attention to what the marshals are telling you to do. Remain standing until the entire audience is told to be seated.

    Why do we need marshals?
    The marshals are counting the number of people for each row – if they tell you to move down – do so! We have to trust their counting. Pay attention! This ceremony is being broadcast live and recorded - you want to look good.

    What are the marshals doing when it is time for the diplomas to be given?
    The marshals will raise each row. There will be a marshal on the end of each row. They will motion you to stand. Watch them! The entire row will file out and proceed to the stage. After you return to your row, please have a seat.

    Which way do we go?
    Do not leave your name card on your chair! Take it with you to hand to the Dean on stage. If you are sitting on the right side, you will exit your row to the right. If you are sitting on the left side, you will exit your row to the left. The first row on the left side curves around to the right side of the stage. Then each row will follow from the left side. Erica Gryctz will serve as traffic cop to keep the exiting row and returning row from crossing. If you are on the left side, watch her. When you return to your seat, please have a seat. Re-enter your row from the left and move all the way down to the next available seat. On the left side, you will not be returning to the same seat you had before you went on stage.

    When do we move across the stage?
    Give your name card to the dean of your school (or whoever is reading names) and move across the stage AFTER your name is read.

    What about school breaks?
    If a school break occurs in the middle of a row (the color of the cards change), the first person of the new school will pause at the stairs to allow a change of speaker.

    When the ceremony is over, how do we leave?
    The stage party and faculty will leave the gym first. Two marshals will lead you out. Two marshals will follow you out. After the first rows have exited, the next rows will file out on their own to the inside. Do not stop when you leave the gym. Go all the way out the side doors that you came in and continue up the steps. Make arrangements as to where you will meet your family. NOT DOWNSTAIRS!!! Cell phone service in the Greenspring campus is not reliable. Make a plan ahead of time with your guests where you will meet after the ceremony (upstairs, outside, theatre lobby, etc.)

    How long does the ceremony last?
    Commencement ceremonies typically last about 2 hours.

    When is the reception?
    Light refreshments will be served immediately after the ceremony in the Manuszak Center (Student Union; upstairs from the gym).

    What are the options if I want more tickets?
    Participating graduates are being given as many tickets as possible. They are encouraged to ask other graduating friends and classmates for any extra tickets.

    Will there be an online viewing option?
    The ceremony will be broadcast live on the internet! The link will be available on the SU website. Friends and family, far and near, can share your special moment from anywhere they have internet access.

    What about pictures?
    Professional photographers will be available to take individual pictures BEFORE the ceremony. The photographer will be in the general vicinity of KH 101. Also after you come down the stairs from the stage another picture will be taken. Remember to move your tassel to the correct side. Also please ask your family to NOT crowd the stage to take pictures. The photographer will provide you with information about how to order your photos.

    What should I do with flowers that my family will give me, my purse, or my other personal belongings?
    Please leave flowers, purses, coats, and any personal belongings with your family.

    Does walking across the stage mean that I graduated?
    No. Participating in Commencement only means that you walked across the stage. Degrees are awarded only after all required courses are complete with minimum required credits and grades earned for all courses. If we have not received your final grades for all courses including internships and study abroad, or any outstanding transcripts from other colleges, then all requirements have not been met. You will be "graduated" once all final grades have been received and all University and program requirements are complete. Degrees are conferred in May, August, and December.

    How will I know that my degree has been awarded?
    In WebXpress, under “Academic Profile” tab, click on “My Profile” and scroll to the bottom of the page. Your degree information will appear in this section.

    When will I receive my diploma?
    Your diploma will be mailed the month following graduation, once all final grades have been received and all University and program requirements are complete. Diplomas are sent to the address listed on your application for graduation via standard U.S. mail.

    Do all of my guests need a ticket to attend commencement?
    All guests, including children and guests in wheelchairs, must have a ticket.

    What accommodations are made for handicapped seating?
    If you have a guest who is using a wheelchair, walker, or has special needs, please email Pamela Daniels at .

  • Commencement For Guests

    Commencement for Guests

    When should guests arrive?
    Doors to the gym will open one hour before the start of the ceremony. Seating areas are not assigned, and are occupied on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests are encouraged to arrive early!

    How long does the ceremony last?
    Commencement ceremonies typically last about 2 hours.

    When the ceremony is over, where do we meet our graduate?
    The stage party and faculty will leave the gym first, followed by the graduates. Guests will exit the gym last. Cell phone service in the Greenspring campus gym is not reliable. Make arrangements ahead of time with your graduate where you will meet after the ceremony such as upstairs at the reception or outside.

    When is the reception?
    Light refreshments will be served immediately after the ceremony in the Manuszak Center (Student Union; upstairs from the gym).

    What are the options if I want more tickets?
    Participating graduates are being given as many tickets as possible. There are NO extra tickets available and there is NO waitlist for extra tickets. Encourage additional friends and family to watch via the live broadcast on the SU website.

    Will there by an online viewing option?
    The ceremony will be broadcast live on the internet! The link will be available on the SU website. Friends and family, far and near, can share your special moment from anywhere they have internet access.

    What about pictures?
    Professional photographers will be available to take individual pictures BEFORE the ceremony. The photographer will be in the general vicinity of KH 101. Another picture will be taken after the graduate walks across the stage. Please do not crowd the stage to take pictures. The photographer will provide graduates information about how to order the photos.

    How do I order announcements and the cap & gown?
    For questions concerning cap & gown and other purchases, please contact the Campus Store.

    How do I get tickets?
    Participating graduates will each be given tickets for guests.

    Do children need tickets?
    ALL guests, including children, will need a ticket to enter. Please do not bring strollers into the gym as we need to keep the aisle space clear. A stroller parking area on the side of the gym will be available if necessary. You may consider hiring a babysitter for the ceremony. The ceremony typically lasts two hours. Young children do not really want to sit still and quiet for so long.

    What accommodations are made for handicapped seating?
    If you have a guest who is using a wheelchair, walker, or has special needs, please email Pamela Daniels at .

Have a question?

Office of the Registrar
1525 Greenspring Valley Road
Stevenson, MD 21153
Phone: 443-334-2206
Fax: 443-334-2623

 
 

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