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FAQS about Commencement

Commencement FAQs

What is the difference between graduation and the Commencement Ceremony?

Graduation is the process of being awarded a degree. All students wishing to graduate must apply for graduation by the application deadline. By applying for graduation, the college will determine whether or not you have met all of your degree requirements.

Commencement is the ceremony that is held at the end of the spring semester in May. This ceremony celebrates the achievement of the degree, and graduates are recognized by the college, community members, family and friends.

At which times of year can I participate in the Commencement Ceremony?

There is only one Commencement Ceremony held each year in May.

How do I make sure that my name is printed in the Commencement Ceremony program?

Submit the online Commencement Participation form by the deadline listed.

Is there a cost to participate or for guests to attend the Commencement Ceremony? Is there a cost for regalia to be worn at the ceremony?

There is no cost for you or your guests to attend the Commencement Ceremony. 
There is a cost for the regalia (cap, gown and tassel) that is worn during the ceremony. You may contact the college bookstore at 972-484-7651 or visit the bookstore website for pricing information. For veterans, there is a VA stole available for purchase as well. For Phi Theta Kappa, you will need to contact or call 972-860-7444 for the honor cords.

What do I do if I need special accommodations for the Commencement Ceremony?

Persons who have a disability should contact the Disability Services office by email: or call 972-860-4673 two weeks prior to the event.

Where do I purchase my cap, gown and invitations for the Commencement Ceremony?

Go to the Brookhaven College Follett Bookstore website for all products and pricing information.  Regalia (cap, gown and tassels) will be available in the bookstore for purchase only during specific dates each spring. You must purchase the regalia at the bookstore directly.

Can I wear a cap and gown from a previous Commencement Ceremony?

No. You must purchase the current year’s version of the Commencement Ceremony regalia.

Can I decorate my cap?

Using the following guidelines, decorating the top of your cap is permitted. Please remember that the Commencement Ceremony is a formal event and all attire worn during the ceremony should be respectful to all students, parents, staff, faculty and visitors. Decorations with lights of any kind, pieces that stick out away from the cap or 3D pieces are not allowed. The decorations must be flat on the top of the cap and not visible from the sides of the cap. Caps should not be offensive, distracting or obstruct anyone’s view of the ceremony. Caps that may be construed as not meeting these guidelines will be removed by Brookhaven staff prior to the ceremony and the student will need to provide an appropriate cap in order to participate in the ceremony.

Am I considered a graduate if I participate in the Commencement Ceremony?

No. You must complete the coursework and hours necessary to be considered a graduate. Your participation or attendance at the Commencement Ceremony does not mean that you have completed your degree requirements.

Can I still participate in the Commencement Ceremony if I know I did not pass one or more classes during the semester of graduation?

Yes. As long as you are six credit hours or less away from completing your degree/certificate, you may participate in the spring Commencement Ceremony.

Do I receive my diploma during the Commencement Ceremony?

No. You will receive a diploma cover. Remember, your participation or attendance at the Commencement Ceremony does not mean that you have completed your degree requirements.

How long will it take for me to receive my diploma?

Final processing for graduation takes place within four weeks after the close of each semester. This timeframe may vary due to holidays, college closings or the short summer semesters. An email will be sent to you when your diploma and/or certificate are ready for pick up. Special considerations for the delivery of your diploma or certificate MUST be emailed to your degree audit representative.

Where do I pick up my diploma?

Brookhaven College Admissions Office, Student Services Center, Bldg. S. Call 972-860-4883.​