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Checklist for grads

Tasks to complete before you can participate in ceremonies

In order to take part in ceremonies, you must have already graduated or have applied for graduation and you must register to walk in Commencement—in addition to taking a few other steps.

Graduation vs. Commencement

Graduation and Commencement are two different things.

Satisfying all academic requirements (university, college, and departmental) for a degree.

Ceremony officiated by the University president that recognizes graduates’ achievements.

Participation in the Commencement ceremony is not a guarantee or an indication of degree completion.

Grad checklist

Complete the following tasks before Commencement.

Mandatory tasks

Two separate tasks are required in order to participate in Commencement ceremonies.

Apply to graduate
Apply through the Office of the Registrar or the Graduate School. An application fee is required.

For your name to appear in the Commencement program, you must submit your application to graduate by the deadline: the first Friday in October for fall and the first Friday in March for spring.

Register to Walk in Commencement ceremonies ***

Once you have applied to graduate, you must take this second step if you choose to participate in ceremonies. (You will not be registered to participate in ceremonies automatically.) If you plan to participate, be sure to register by the deadline.

*** Plan to complete the asterisked tasks at the Grad Fair.

Get everything done fast at the Grad Fair

Grad Fair is a one-stop-shop for completing pre-Commencement tasks. If you’re a student at any WSU campus, you can come to the Grad Fair to register to participate in ceremonies, rent regalia, and more.

Plus,  you can get discounts on grad packages—things like regalia rentals, announcements, and diploma frames.

Hourly drawings give you a chance to win valuable prizes, such as a free cap and gown set, ceremony VIP seating, a free graduate photo package, and more.

In-person fair: Tues., Oct. 26

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Compton Union Building, Junior Ballroom

Register for ceremonies, rent regalia, and more. A Herff Jones representative will be on hand.    

Online Q&A: Wed., Oct. 27

2 sessions: 9 a.m. and noon
On Calendly

A Herff Jones representative will respond to questions about regalia and other products for grads.    

Recommended tasks

Rent academic regalia ***
Reserve your cap and gown.  Regalia is optional for online ceremonies.  

Update your records
Keep your information up to date in University records.

  • Unlisted records: If you have an “unlisted” restriction on your WSU directory record, the University cannot include your name and degree in the Commencement program. It also cannot include your name on the Commencement t-shirt. If you have this restriction on your record and would like it removed, follow instructions to release directory information.
  • Name changes: To verify the name on your diploma, contact the Office of the Registrar or the Graduate School.

Complete the Undergraduate placement survey ***
Information collected is used to develop career and academic programming for WSU students.

Review your student account and loans ***

  • Student account status: Ensure that there is no balance due that could delay delivery of your diploma.
  • Federal loans: Check with Student Financial Services to see if you need to complete exit counseling. 

International student? Contact the Office of International Programs ***
Let them know your post-graduation plans by filling out the Program Completion Form.

Purchase announcements, commemorative merchandise, and portraits ***

Tell (and invite) your family and friends
Sending grad announcements? Check the list of degrees by college, so you’re sure to cite yours correctly.

Inviting international visitors? See suggestions for helping them obtain a visitors’ visa.

Join the Alumni Association ***
Your membership connects you to the vast Cougar network after you graduate.

*** Plan to complete the asterisked tasks at the Grad Fair.

Questions about graduation?

Undergraduate and professional degrees

Office of the Registrar

Include your student ID number in communications.


Graduate degrees

Graduate School