Academic Affairs

Graduation

Graduation Application
Diplomas
Transcripts
Tropaia Awards Ceremony
Commencement Ceremony


Graduation Application and Clearance Process

The School officially graduates students in the BALS, MALS, DLS, and MPS programs three times per year (in May for spring graduates; in August for summer graduates; and in December for fall graduates).  A single graduation ceremony is held for all graduates every May, and students who have earned their degrees in summer and fall are encouraged to attend the celebration. 

If you are an Advanced Professional Certificate Student, please view the APC Application of Completion Form found under Academic Affairs - Student Forms.

Graduation is not an automatic process, and all students must be cleared and certified in a timely manner to graduate by the Office of Academic Affairs & Compliance.  In order to facilitate this process, we ask all students to complete the following steps:

1. Print up a copy of your transcript and degree audit (using the MyAccess system) to review on your own and with your advising program.  While your program can provide you with academic guidance, it is ultimately your responsibility to ensure that you have met all requirements (including specific course, GPA, credit, and major requirements which can differ by program).

2. Undergraduate Liberal Studies (BALS) and Doctoral Liberal Studies (DLS) students should contact their advising programs to fill out their graduation application.  Those programs will forward your application to the Office of Academic Affairs & Compliance for final review and processing.

3. Master of Professional Studies (MPS) and Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) students should fill out the online graduation application in MyAccess at https://myaccess.georgetown.edu under "Student Records" and "Apply to Graduate."  MPS and MALS students can only apply to graduate when they have 30 attempted graduate-level credit hours (your earned hours plus your currently enrolled hours).  This application process is described in more detail below.

4. MPS students must request overload approval in advance to count additional courses beyond the 30 credits required for their degree.  Please read the full policy in the MPS Student Handbook (pp. 16-17).

5. Applications are required from all graduating students for diploma orders, degree conferral, and preparation of the annual Commencement Book.  Please note that students without all final recorded grades (for example, "I" or "NR" grades) may be excluded from the Commencement Book.  Failure to submit your completed application in a timely manner could result in delays receiving academic clearance to graduate, degree conferral, and ordering your diploma.  Degrees cannot be posted retroactively.

6. All students should contact the Office of Student Accounts (202-687-7369) to ensure that they have settled their financial obligations.  The University cannot provide diplomas or official transcripts to students who owe in excess of $100.00.

7. International students should contact the Office of International Programs at (202) 687-5867 to update their status.

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MPS and MALS Online Graduation Application Process

If you are an Advanced Professional Certificate Student, please view the APC Application of Completion Form found under Academic Affairs - Student Forms.

The application to graduate for Summer 2014 will be open on/around July 27, 2014.

(Click here to view Screen Shots of Online Graduation Application Process)

1. Login to the MyAccess system at https://myaccess.georgetown.edu using your NetID and password.
2. On the top menu bar, click on the "Student" tab.
3. Under "Student Services," click on the "Student Records" link.
4. Under "Student Records," click on the "Apply to Graduate" link.
5. Verify and select your curriculum/program and click "Continue."
6. By "Graduation Date," use the pull-down menu and select the date/month in which you will complete your final coursework. Click "Continue."
7. Indicate whether or not you plan on attending the May graduation ceremony.  Click "Continue."
8. Select your Diploma Name.  Click "Continue."  Verify the accuracy of your diploma name and make any needed changes here.  Your name will appear exactly as you enter it here, so please make sure it is accurate and as you want it written on your official diploma.  Click "Continue."
9. Select your Diploma Mailing Address.  Click "Continue."  Verify your diploma mailing address and make any needed changes.  Click "Continue."
10. Review your Application Summary and click "Submit Request."
**Please verify the status and receipt of your application using the MyAccess system.  Submission of an application does not guarantee degree conferral.  Degrees are awarded and posted on transcripts only after all requirements have been successfully completed.

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Georgetown Diploma

All Georgetown University graduates earn the official Georgetown diploma, written in Latin, and reflecting the history, tradition, and values of the University. A full translation of the diploma is provided upon graduation along with a traditional blue-and-gray ribbon (the Georgetown colors) and suggestions for matting and framing. The degrees offered through the School of Continuing Studies include: The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies (Artium Baccalaureatum in Studiis Liberalibus); the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (Magistratum Artium in Studiis Liberalibus); the Doctor of Liberal Studies (Doctorem Studiorum Liberalium); and the Master of Professional Studies (Magistratum Professionalium Studiorum).  View a sample Georgetown Diploma.

In case of damage to or loss of your original diploma, please visit the University Registrar's site and complete the diploma replacement form.

Note to Summer and Fall Graduates:

Before diplomas can be ordered for summer and fall graduates, the Office of Academic Affairs & Compliance must certify that the applicants have completed the minimum requirements for their degree.  This is a manual process that takes about 2-3 weeks from the end of the examination period.  You can help ensure an efficient process by checking your transcript and making sure that you have no outstanding grades.  If you find that you are missing a course grade, please contact the instructor of that course to encourage the timely recording of that final grade.  MALS and DLS students are required to secure official thesis approval from their advisor, the Graduate Liberal Studies department, and the School. 

Diplomas are distributed through the Office of Academic Affairs & Compliance.  Only spring graduates will be able to pick up diplomas in person, and only on the day of the commencement ceremony.  If you are a summer or fall graduate, or if you are a spring graduate who does not pick up your diploma in-person, your diploma will be mailed to the address you provided on the electronic Application to Graduate.  If no address was provided on the electronic Application to Graduate, your diploma will be mailed to the address stored in MyAccess.  Diplomas for summer graduates usually are delivered by mid-November; diplomas for fall graduates usually are delivered by mid-March. 

All BALS diplomas are distributed in May at Commencement, regardless of semester of graduation.

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Transcript

The transcript is the official University record of the work you completed here at Georgetown.  After the Office of Academic Affairs & Compliance certifies the applicants' graduation, they notify the Registrar's Office and the awarding of the degree is posted officially.  Transcripts for summer graduates are usually complete by mid-September; transcripts for fall graduates are usually complete by late January into early February (depending upon the recording of final grades).  Students should request official transcripts through the Registrar's Office to confirm the posting of their degree.

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Tropaia Awards Ceremony

The School of Continuing Studies’ Tropaia Awards Ceremony celebrates the outstanding contributions and achievements of students, faculty, staff and an alumnus or alumna. Each of Georgetown University’s schools holds an annual Tropaia exercise to honor outstanding members of the Georgetown community. At SCS’s Tropaia Ceremony, awards are given to outstanding students, faculty, staff and an alumnus or alumna, Doctor of Liberal Studies candidates are presented with their hoods and students in the Advanced Professional Certificate programs receive their certificates.

2014 Tropaia information - Updated as of 3/20/14
The School’s 2014 Tropaia Ceremony will be held on Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. in Gaston Hall.  All SCS students, faculty, staff, alumni and their families and friends are invited to attend. There will be a reception immediately following the ceremony in Dahlgren Quadrangle.

“Tropaia” comes from the ancient Greek word for "trophies," which refers to a monument constructed to celebrate a military victory. We preserve and extend this meaning to honor outstanding members of the Georgetown community.

NOTE: Parking at Georgetown is very limited, but there are some locations to park on campus. The entrance off Canal Road, N.W.—west of the Key Bridge—leads to the Southwest Garage. Off-campus (street) parking is hard to find in the Georgetown area, so the use of public transportation is strongly encouraged when visiting the university. Call (202) 687-4355 for more detailed parking information or click here.

Please note academic regalia is NOT worn at Tropaia.

Awards and Nominations

All members of the SCS community—students, faculty, staff and alumni—are encouraged to submit nominations for the Spirit of Georgetown Award. The final award selection will be made by an SCS Tropaia Awards Committee comprised of students, faculty, staff and alumni.

Spirit of Georgetown Award
The Spirit of Georgetown Award honors a graduating student or alumnus or alumna who exemplifies Georgetown University's values of men and women in service to others, commitment to justice and the common good, intellectual openness, and leadership.

Please follow the link below to submit nominations by March 31, 2014

ELIGIBLE NOMINEES INCLUDE: All students of degree programs (BALS, MALS, DLS, MPS) who are eligible to graduate in May 2014 and alumni of degree programs (BALS, MALS, DLS, MPS) who graduated between 1975 and December 2013.

Outstanding Student Award
The Outstanding Student Award honors students with an exceptional academic record and commitment to their industry or field of study who have made outstanding contributions to their communities.

Awards are given for each Master of Professional Studies (MPS) program, the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies (BALS) program, and Graduate Liberal Studies (MALS and DLS). Award recipients are nominated and selected by each program.

Outstanding Faculty Award
The Outstanding Faculty Award honors faculty who advance the mission of the School and University through active engagement of students in teaching and learning, a commitment to their industry or field of study, and contributions to the Georgetown and Washington, D.C. communities.

Awards are given for each Master of Professional Studies (MPS) program, the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies (BALS) program, and Graduate Liberal Studies (MALS and DLS). Award recipients are nominated and selected by each program.

Dean’s Service Award
The Dean’s Service Award honors students, faculty and/or staff who make outstanding contributions to the School, University and/or Washington, D.C. community. Award recipients demonstrate exceptional vision, leadership and integrity with a commitment to Georgetown’s heritage and values.

The Dean of SCS selects the recipient(s) of the Dean’s Service Award.

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May 2014 Commencement

The School of Continuing Studies will hold its annual Commencement Ceremony and Reception on Friday, May 16, 2014 to honor August 2013, December 2013 and May 2014 graduates of the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies (BALS), Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS), Doctor of Liberal Studies (DLS), and Master of Professional Studies (MPS) degree programs.

Ceremony: 3:30 p.m., Healy Lawn (Rain site: McDonough Arena)

Reception: 5:00 p.m., Leo J. O'Donovan Dining Hall

Students: in order to participate in the 2014 Commencement Ceremony, you must complete the following RSVP form: 

2014 SCS Commencement Ceremony

Student and Faculty Check-In

Please arrive by 2:00 p.m. for check-in in White Gravenor. Program specific locations below:

  • BALS - WGR 213
  • DLS and MALS - WGR 211
  • Emergency & Disaster Management - WGR 201A
  • Human Resource Management - WGR 202
  • Journalism - WGR 209
  • Public Relations & Corporate Communications - WGR 208
  • Real Estate - WGR 206
  • Sports Industry Management - WGR 311
  • Technology Management - WGR 204
  • Platform Party - WGR 201B

In the event of rain, all students and faculty should report to McDonough Arena no later than 2:20 p.m.

  • ALL students - McDonough Arena Tent
  • Presidential and Platform Parties - McDonough Arena East Hallway

Academic Regalia

Please review this guide to wearing your academic regalia as you prepare for the commencement activities. All faculty who are participating in commencement and candidates for graduation are required to wear the exact academic regalia for their degree (gown, cap, hood, and tassel). 

Due to the formality of this occasion and safety concerns regarding walking on the steps and stage, please wear appropriate footwear; flip flops, clogs and loose fitting shoes are not recommended. In addition, it is requested that men wear slacks and a dress shirt with tie. For women, slacks with a blouse, or a dress is appropriate for the ceremony. Please remember that a collared shirt helps to easily attach your hood. Flowers, corsages, and balloons should not be carried or worn during the academic procession and commencement ceremony.

Student Veterans can contact the Student Veterans Coordinator regarding the red-white-and-blue honor cords for veterans to wear at commencement in May at veteranservices@georgetown.edu.

Student Eligibility

Students eligible to participate in the 2014 Commencement Ceremony include August 2013 graduates, December 2013 graduates, and potential May 2014 graduates.
  • BALS students must accumulate a minimum of 120 credits to qualify for graduation and are eligible to walk in Commencement if they are within 12 hours of completing all requirements in the summer term. (May 8, 2014).
  • MPS students who are within 6 credits of completing their coursework, and plan to complete them in the upcoming Summer 2014 semester, may also be eligible to participate in the Commencement Ceremony.
  • Due to intensive thesis review and approval requirements, MALS and DLS students must have completed all required credits and have received formal thesis approval to participate in the Commencement Ceremony. 

Please note: only the names of students expected to complete their coursework by the end of the Spring 2014 semester, and students who completed their coursework in August 2013 or December 2013, will be printed in the 2014 Commencement Book. Students graduating in August 2014 or December 2014 will have their names printed in the 2015 Commencement Book.
 
Please review graduation eligibility policies and requirements here: academic-affairs/graduation

Commencement FAQs 

When is the SCS Commencement Ceremony?
The School of Continuing Studies’ 2014 Commencement Ceremony is on Friday, May 16 at 3:30 p.m. on Healy Lawn (Rain site: McDonough Arena). A Reception follows at 5:00 p.m. in the Leo J. O'Donovan Dining Hall.
 
Do my guests need to RSVP for the Ceremony?
No. However, students must indicate how many guests they will bring on student survey:
 
Are tickets required for the Commencement Ceremony?
No.
 
Is the Reception open to family and friends?
Yes. A Reception follows the Commencement Ceremony at 5:00 p.m. in the Leo J. O'Donovan Dining Hall. Light refreshments will be served.
 
How long will the Commencement Ceremony last?
The ceremony lasts approximately 90 minutes. 
 
Where do I go on graduation day?
Please visit academic-affairs/graduation#commencement for the most up-to-date information about checking-in on Commencement day.
 
I’m a student—how do I purchase my graduation regalia?
In order to participate in the Commencement Ceremony, students must be dressed in the correct academic regalia. We suggest wearing business casual attire under your gowns. As part of your attire, we highly recommend wearing shirts or blouses with a button-up collar, which helps keep your hood in place.
 
Students are responsible for purchasing their own regalia. There are three ways to purchase your regalia this year:

Pickup at SCS
  • Place an order using this form (also available in the SCS bookstore). Complete the form and deliver to an SCS bookstore staff member. The order will be filled and available for pickup at SCS by April 23.
  • If you prefer, fax the form to the number provided (202-687-7625). If you plan to pickup your regalia at SCS, please note this in the "Ship To" column.
  • Jostens, Georgetown's regalia vendor, will be at SCS on April 1-3 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. During this time period, they will process orders for regalia, graduation announcements, and class rings.
  • Order pickup will available at the SCS bookstore between April 23-25 from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. 
Pickup at Main Campus
  • Purchase regalia at the Main Campus Bookstore the week prior to graduation, May 12-16 (store hours: 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., May 12-14; 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., May 15; 8:00 a.m. to noon, May 16).
Home delivery
  • Jostens will ship regalia to your home for a surcharge of $5.50. Please fax this form to the number provided (202-687-7625).

Regalia Specifications

  • The hood for the Master of Professional Studies degree is peacock blue.
  • The hood for the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies degree has a white velvet trim on the edges of a black hood.
  • The hood for the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies degree has a white velvet trim on the edges of a black hood and is a shorter version of the master's hood.
  • The hood for the Doctor of Liberal Studies degree has a wide band of white velvet on a black hood. The doctoral gown has horizontal black velvet stripes on the sleeves.

Cap and gown rental is not offered for students.

I’m a student—can I purchase regalia without visiting the campus bookstore?
If you wish to purchase your regalia via fax order, you can do so by following the instructions below:
 
Please fax this form to the number provided (202-687-7625). Write your home address in the "Ship To" column.

Cap and gown rental is not offered for students.

I’m a faculty memberhow do purchase my graduation regalia?
The Director of Events will be reaching out to all faculty with rental directions for graduation regalia in the last week of March. The Dean’s office has agreed to pay for faculty rental regalia this year. Please note, however, that if a member of your faculty does not return their regalia, your department will be billed.
 
If you or your faculty would like to purchase custom-made regalia, you are welcome to do so at your own expense. To do this, you must call Jostens directly at 800-854-7464. Details and photos can be found at www.jostens.com/college/special

When do I pick-up graduation announcements?
Each student receives 10 graduation announcements free of charge (these are generic and do not include your name). Students can pick these up after March 18 from the SCS front desk on level 1 or the program reception desk on C1. 
 
If students would like personalized graduation announcements, they must order these themselves through the Jostens website: http://college.jostens.com/jostens/index.jsp?affiliateId=1037616
 
When should my family and friends arrive to Healy Lawn?
Commencement Ceremony seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Seating will begin after the conclusion of the Business School’s 12:30 p.m. ceremony (approximately 2:00-2:30 p.m.), which is before SCS’s ceremony. There are plenty of seats on Healy Lawn to accommodate everyone’s guests, and in the event of rain there are plenty of seats in McDonough Arena. All guests should be in their seats by the start of the procession at 3:15 p.m.
 
What will the weather be like?
The weather in Washington, D.C. in May is often warm and humid. There is also chance of rain. All guests should dress appropriately and bring an umbrella in the event of rain.
 
I have a difficult last name—how can I ensure it is pronounced correctly?
When students arrive on Commencement day, they will be given a note card on which to write their name phonetically. They will hand this card to the announcer before they cross the stage.
 
When do I get my diploma?
Diplomas will be distributed in-person immediately following the Commencement Ceremony in Leo J. O'Donovan Dining Hall. If students do not pick-up their diploma on Commencement day, it will be mailed to them. 
 
Who is our graduation speaker?
Georgetown University announces all graduation speakers through the Office of Communications. This announcement is made in early May.
 
I am an Advanced Professional Certificate student—will I participate in the Commencement Ceremony?
No. APC students will receive their certificates at SCS’s 2014 Tropaia Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. in Gaston Hall with a reception immediately following. More information about Tropaia can be found here: academic-affairs/graduation#tropaia
 
Where should people park during Commencement weekend?
Parking during Commencement weekend is challenging. Please review the following for tips on parking and traveling to campus: http://commencement.georgetown.edu/travel-and-parking/
 
There is limited handicapped parking in the Southwest Quad garage. When possible, guests should drop off their handicapped family member close to the Commencement site and then park the car.  There will also be a shuttle bus for handicapped attendees running continuously from the main gate to various sections of campus all day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
 
Do you provide wheelchairs or handicapped seating during the Commencement Ceremony?
Yes. Wheelchairs are provided free of charge during graduation.  Students will need to RSVP via the online survey, 2014 SCS Commencement Ceremony, if a family member or friend requires wheelchair rental during the ceremony. There is a reserved seating section for wheelchairs (Healy Lawn: on the audience right side of the stage closest to Healy Circle; McDonough Arena: on the audience’s left side by the bleachers and the band). Each guest requiring a wheelchair can bring one attendee with them to this section.
 
How will I know if there is a rain call?
If you have questions about the status of the Commencement Ceremony, you may check the University’s main web page (Georgetown.edu), the inclement weather page, http://www.georgetown.edu/operating-status/index.html, or call the inclement weather line: (202) 687-7669 for updates.
 
Can I get pictures or a video of me walking across stage?
Yes. Ordering information will be provided by the photographer when your photo is taken.
 
Note:  A live webcast of the Commencement Ceremony will be available at: http://www.georgetown.edu/news/webcasts.html
 
What do most guests wear for to Commencement exercises?
Traditionally, guests wear business or business casual attire. 
 
What is the Tropaia Awards Ceremony and when is it?
The School of Continuing Studies’ Tropaia Awards Ceremony celebrates the outstanding contributions and achievements of students, faculty, staff and alumni. Each of Georgetown University’s schools holds an annual Tropaia exercise to honor outstanding members of the Georgetown community. At SCS’s Tropaia Ceremony, awards are given to outstanding students, faculty and staff and an alumnus; Doctor of Liberal Studies candidates are presented with their hoods; and students in the Advanced Professional Certificate programs receive their certificates.
The School’s 2014 Tropaia Ceremony will be held on Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. in Gaston Hall with a reception immediately following in Dahlgren Quadrangle. All SCS students, faculty, staff and alumni and their families and friends are invited to attend the ceremony.

 
More information about Tropaia can be found here: academic-affairs/graduation#tropaia
 
What other activities can I participate in during graduation week?
The annual Baccalaureate Mass will be held Sunday, May 18, 2014 at 9:00 a.m. on Healy Lawn and includes an academic procession of students (undergraduate and graduate) and faculty.
 
The annual Commencement Brunch will be held on Sunday, May 18, 2014 at 10:45 a.m. in the Leavey Center Ballroom. All graduates and their guests are welcome to attend.
 
Do you have information about area hotels and restaurants?
Hotels and restaurants will be heavily booked, and we recommend you and your guests make reservations as soon as possible.
 
Where can I find a map of the Georgetown campus?
 
Where can I find more Commencement information online?
The Georgetown University Commencement website has up-to-date information: http://commencement.georgetown.edu/
 
What if I have more questions or need additional information?
You can email: scsgrad@georgetown.edu


Optional Lavender Graduation

Lavender Graduation celebrates LGBTQ graduates of all Georgetown University degree programs in a voluntary ceremony on Main Campus. Please note that this ceremony is a separate event from Commencement and participation is optional.

Date & Time: Monday, April 28, 2014: 5:00-7:00 p.m.
Reception & Dinner: 7:00-9:00 p.m.
Location: Fisher Colloquium, Rafik B. Hariri Building

Please visit: http://lgbtq.georgetown.edu/lavender-graduation for more information and to RSVP.

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Archives:

May 2013 Commencement Information
May 2012 Commencement Information
May 2011 Commencement Information
May 2010 Commencement Information


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Last updated: 6/5/14

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