Preparing for Commencement
Welcome graduates! Commencement is on its way; be sure to check back regularly for updates.
Preparing for Commencement
Submit Your Application for Degree Candidacy or Application for Graduation
A Progress Toward Degree/Graduation Application needs to be filed with the Records Office to determine eligibility for graduation. The deadline for the grad check is Friday, February 8.
Students requiring attendance at summer sessions to meet all graduation requirements may not be deficient by more than 9 units. An Application for Summer Graduation needs to be filed with the Records Office during the graduation check.
To be approved for participation in Commencement, you must resolve any outstanding charges of fees or misconduct. The university does not guarantee the awarding of a diploma.
Date: Tuesday, March 19
Location: Nicholson Commons ARC
Time: 4:30 – 6 p.m.
Dessert will be provided by the Alumni Association on the patio outside the ARC.
Date: Wednesday, March 20
Location: Nicholson Commons ARC
Time: 2 – 4:30 p.m.
Date: Thursday, March 21
Location: Nicholson Commons ARC
Time: 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
This is your opportunity to pick up your commencement tickets, have a cap and gown photo taken, order your announcements, class rings, and more! You don't want to miss this awesome event. Parents are welcome to stop by as well.
Check Your Student Account
Your student account must be paid in full to receive your commencement tickets and regalia, participate in the Commencement ceremonies, and receive your diploma and official transcripts.
Order Your Announcements
Announcements can be ordered online or by calling CB Graduation Announcements at (800) 433-0296.
Tickets and Seating
- Tickets are required for all convocations at Point Loma Nazarene University.
- Each qualified graduating senior who will be participating in an undergraduate convocation on Saturday, May 4 is eligible to receive 10 tickets.
- Children age three and older are required to have a ticket.
- Students need to pick up their tickets in person. If a student is unable to pick up their own tickets, they can email firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of the person who will pick them up. That person will need to show their own I.D. at the time of pickup.
- Tickets allow guests access into the Greek Amphitheatre but do not reserve a specific seat. All seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
- Tickets are not for resale.
- The waitlist is now open. Requests will not be accepted after Friday, April 26.
- All requests for additional tickets must be made by the student.
- Students who would like to be placed on the waitlist for additional tickets should contact Shelley Fruchey. Please provide your name, student ID number, major or program, and how many tickets you are requesting.
- The waitlist does not guarantee extra tickets will be available.
- The waitlist is first-come, first-served.
- Early-bird ticket distribution will take place at GradFest on March 19-20.
- Regular ticket distribution will begin Monday, April 8 in the Records Office between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.
The Greek Amphitheatre will open for seating:
- No earlier than 9 a.m. for the College of Arts and Humanities, School of Business, School of Education, and School of Theology & Christian Ministry Convocation at 10 a.m.
- No earlier than 3:30 p.m. for the College of Natural and Social Sciences, School of Nursing, and Department of Music Convocation at 4:30 p.m.
Seating for guests with special needs is available. Please see an usher to be directed to those areas. One person may sit with the guest with special needs. Due to limited space, we are unable to allow all family members to sit in this section.
Due to the capacity of this event, reserved seats must be relinquished 30 minutes prior to the beginning of the ceremony in anticipation of the academic procession. To ensure guests are able to sit together with family and friends, please encourage them to arrive early.
Guests may also view a broadcast of the Convocation in the air-conditioned Crill Performance Hall or a live webcast online via a link on the PLNU commencement page.
Pick Up Your Cap and Gown (Regalia)
As a tradition, caps and gowns are worn by all participants at the Commencement ceremony. All regalia comes individually packaged, which will result in some creasing or wrinkling. You are encouraged to pick up your regalia early so you have time to iron or steam the gown by hanging it up near the shower or using a steamer. Ironing is not recommended as it may damage the fabric. This regalia is yours to keep; you do not have to return it.
Each student will also receive a tassel for the academic year in which they are graduating.
Comfortable clothing under the robe is suggested. It is also important to wear comfortable shoes since you will be descending and ascending unevenly spaced steps in the amphitheatre. However, out of respect for the occasion we ask you not wear tennis shoes or flip flops.
At the time regalia are picked up, you will complete and sign a diploma mailing request, as diplomas cannot be mailed without a signature release.
Wednesday, May 1 through Friday, May 3
Location: Courtyard adjacent to the Records Office on the PLNU campus. The Records Office is the small white building immediately to the right after entering the campus.
Time: 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday, May 4
Location: Records Booth on Peppertree Lane (in front of the Early Childhood Learning Center)
Time: Beginning at 8:30 a.m.
Students must show I.D. (driver’s license or PLNU student I.D.) when picking up regalia. All student accounts must be clear at the time of pickup. If a student is unable to pick up their own regalia, they can email email@example.com with the name of the person who will pick it up. That person will need to show their own I.D. at the time of pickup.
Honor Cords and Shawls
Gold honor cords are distributed to the students who graduate with honors during cap and gown distribution. This cord is also a memento for those who have earned it. Shawls are worn by international students, depicting their national origin.
Note: Only university-provided cords and shawls will be allowed to be worn at the Commencement ceremony.
For the Convocations to be enjoyed by all and for everyone’s safety, we ask you comply with the following:
- Leave valuables with family members or guests prior to lining up for the academic procession. There will be no secured areas to store these items during the Convocation.
- Cell phones and other personal electronic devices should be turned off or silenced for the duration of the ceremony. Before the Convocation begins, arrange a meeting place with guests for after Commencement and please resist the temptation to send text messages during the ceremony.
- The items below are not allowed in the Greek Amphitheatre at any time before, during, or after the Convocation and will be confiscated by security personnel:
- Air Horns, Cowbells, or Other Noisemakers
- Confetti Launchers, Streamers, Silly String
- Beach Balls
- Balloons obstruct the view of those seated around you and will not be allowed in the amphitheatre. Please check them in at Cabrillo Hall, Room 104, where they can be picked up after the Convocation.
- Due to the number of guests with small children, we are unable to accommodate strollers inside the venue. There will be a designated area for strollers to be parked outside of the amphitheatre.
- Please refrain from moving around at the end of the Convocation until the end of the recessional.
- Each Convocation should last approximately one and a half hours. If you should find it necessary to leave your seat, please notify one of the marshals for assistance.
Lineup and Academic Procession
There is no rehearsal for Commencement. For the 10 a.m. Convocation, you will begin lining up at approximately 9:15 a.m. For the 4:30 p.m. Convocation, you will begin lining up at approximately 3:45 p.m. Lineup will take place on Peppertree Lane (the main street throughout campus). Lists of names will be on stanchions for each row of graduates. Commencement marshals will assist you with the lineup and provide instructions for the procession. View details of the line of march.
A hooding process is part of the ceremony. The hood, or the vestment of colors that fits around your neck and drapes down your back, is an important element of your regalia because its colors represent the university's degree. As you move to the platform and while you are standing in line waiting for your name to be called to receive your degree, members of the faculty will place the hood around your neck. In so doing, they will be investing you with the colors of your degree. This hood is also yours to keep.
In Case of Rain...
This is a “rain or shine” event. While we may experience a delay due to inclement weather, the ceremony will remain in the Greek Amphitheatre. Guests are encouraged to bring a hooded jacket and something dry to cover your seat if rain is expected.
Additional Viewing Options
All ceremonies will be broadcast live in Crill Performance Hall (Cooper Music Center, adjacent to the Greek Amphitheatre), where additional seating will be available. Tickets are not required for entrance to Crill Performance Hall. This location is ideal for guests with special needs and those uncomfortable with prolonged exposure to the weather. We will also be broadcasting to monitors in The Point Break Cafe and several other locations around campus.
For those unable to attend, we will be broadcasting live on the Internet. A few days before the event, a link will be posted on the main Commencement website to access the live stream of the ceremony. That link will "go live" a few minutes before the start of each Convocation.
Since it is impossible to identify with certainty by Commencement day the students who have completed all requirements, degrees are not posted until all final grades are received; then the diploma may be ordered. As you walk across the platform and greet the president of the university, you will receive a diploma tube or folder with a Diploma Mailing Request form inside for ordering the diploma. Most of you will fill out the original request when picking up your cap and gown. If, however, your address changes from the original request submitted or if the request is not filled out before or on Commencement day, the form in the diploma cover may be mailed. Once the Records Office has confirmed all requirements for graduation have been completed, the office will mail the diploma at your written request, to the address designated on the order form.
Students who are finishing all requirements for graduation on schedule will be withdrawn automatically from the university following the posting of their degree. It is your responsibility to return library books and settle student accounts. Failure to follow through on these details will make it impossible for the university to release diplomas or official transcripts.
As new members of PLNU's Alumni Association, graduates are eligible to enjoy unique experiences and special benefits. We invite you to visit the Alumni Association website.