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Commencement Frequently Asked Questions 

Below are some answers to typical questions that graduates or visitors may have about Commencement. 

low are some answers to typical questions that prospective graduates may have about Commencement.

  1. When is Commencement?
    Spring Commencement has been postponed until December 2020. The University will post an update as soon as a definite date has been determined.
  2. Will a Prospective Graduate Picture dates be rescheduled?
    Yes. We are working with our Photographer vendor on dates and will provided details as soon as possible.
  3. How do I order my cap and gown?
    You may order your cap and gown through the Herff Jones website. We have extended the deadline to order your cap and gowns through May 15, 2020. The cost of the cap, gown, hood and tassel are included in your graduation fee. Remember, if you order any other products, there will be additional cost. Cap and Gowns will be available for pick up closer to the December commencement date.
  4. How do I order graduation announcements?
    You may purchase graduation announcements through the Herff Jones website. Students who have already ordered personalized announcements will receive new cards free errata and can contact Herff Jones through their website.
  5. What is the deadline date to pay the senior graduation fee?
    The graduation fee should still be paid on or before April 1. All balances must be paid. For further questions pertaining to senior clearance, seniors should contact the Student Accounts Office at (919) 546-8228.
  6. Can students contact the Cashier’s Office for credit card payments?
    Yes, students can contact the Cashier’s Office at 919-546-8678. Students can also make cash, certified check, money order or on-line payments through the Cashier’s Office. Office hours for Student Accounts and Cashier’s Office are 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Both offices are located in Tyler Hall, 1st floor.
  7. May I participate in the Commencement Exercise although I have an outstanding account balance at the institution?
    No. Only students who have completed the Graduation Clearance Process (which includes clearing all outstanding balances) will be allowed to participate in the Commencement Exercise.
  8. May I participate in the Commencement Exercise if I still need to complete coursework after May?
    A decision on this matter will be shared with prospective graduates soon.
  9. Will my name be included in the program if I have not completed all requirements to be cleared?
    No. Your name will not be listed in the program if you have not completed all requirement to be cleared?
  10. Will I receive a diploma if I did not apply for graduation?
    All students must apply to graduate in order to receive a diploma, regardless of whether you intend to participate in any commencement exercises. Spring graduates will receive their diplomas by mail. You will be notified once they have been sent.
  11. When are Spring senior exams?
    Spring exams for prospective graduates are scheduled between April 27 - April 29, exams will be completed online.
  12. Must I participate in the commencement ceremony to receive my diploma?
    No. Participation in the commencement ceremony is not mandatory.
  13. Will my name appear in the commencement program?
    Yes. If you have completed your graduation application your name will appear in the commencement program. However, the commencement program is for ceremonial purposes only and does not reflect the official graduation status of the participants. The diploma of Shaw University, signed and sealed by its proper officers, remains the official testimony of the possession of the degree.
  14. How do I get my honor cord?
    Honor cords will be distributed in December for Commencement. If you do not plan to participate in December and wish to receive your honor cord, contact the Office of the Registrar at registrar@shawu.edu in May.
  15. How do I clear for graduation remotely?
    Visit the Commencement website Graduation Clearance Process, FAQs and Important Dates and Deadlines pages. You can find the Commencement website from the Home page under Academics → Related Links.