Commencement Planning

The below information is for all fall 2018 planned graduates, which also includes summer 2018 Adult & Graduate Studies and Dual Enrollment planned graduates. Students planning to be considered for December commencement must have all academic requirements met by the end of fall semester 2018.
Diverse students at graduation

Watch UNW Commencement Online

Guests who cannot attend the event can watch the ceremonies live on Friday, December 21.

You may review recent commencement ceremonies online.

Fall Commencement Schedule of Events:

Date/ Time Commencement Activity
Friday, December 21, 2018
1:15-2:30 p.m.Commencement rehearsal in Knight Hall for all participating graduates
3:15 p.m.Participating graduates assemble in regalia in Nazareth Hall, 2nd floor
4-5:30 p.m.Commencement ceremony in Knight Hall
5:30–6:30 p.m.Commencement reception in Billy Graham Community Life Commons

Regalia: Caps, Gowns, and Hoods

  • Beginning in late September, planned graduates order caps and gowns online.
  • Caps and gowns (and hoods for master's degree students) must be ordered by no later than Sunday, October 28.
  • Regalia will be distributed in the Nazareth Great Room at Grad Expo on Tuesday, December 11. 
  • Regalia must be returned to room G205 in the Billy Graham Community Life Commons following the commencement ceremony. Graduates may keep their cap and tassel.

Graduation Announcement Ordering

  • Beginning in later October, planned graduates who desire to order graduation announcements may do so online. If ordering, please allow 3 weeks for processing and shipping.

Commencement Tickets

  • For viewing of commencement ceremonies in Knight Hall, tickets are required for guests of participating planned graduates. 
  • The number of tickets provided is based on the total number of planned graduates participating in commencement. Tickets will be distributed to participating planned graduates at Grad Expo on Tuesday, December 11. Each participating graduate will receive 5 (five) tickets.
  • Overflow viewing on monitors will be available in the Totino Fine Arts Center lobby (no tickets required for overflow viewing).

Guests and/or Graduates with Special Needs?

  • For guests and/or graduates who will be attending commencement who have accommodation needs (e.g., wheelchair/ADA, hearing impaired or interpreter/translation requests, etc.), please complete and submit a request form by no later than Thursday, December 6.

Professional Photographers

  • Each graduate will be photographed as diploma covers are presented and at a posed location at the side of the stage. 
  • After graduation, graduates will be given the opportunity to purchase pictures directly from Lifetouch.


Adult Undergraduate and Graduate Studies Students: Diplomas will be mailed within 4 – 6 weeks upon degree completion.

Traditional Undergraduate and Dual Enrollment Students: Diplomas will be mailed beginning in late January.

Diplomas are sent after graduates have fulfilled all degree requirements and resolved any student account holds. (This includes paying the graduation fee charged to the graduate's account the last term the graduate registers (undergraduate: $75; graduate: $100)

(Note: Diploma lists degree only. Transcript lists degree, major[s], and any minor[s].) 

Desktop Diploma

Uploma™ provides another way to display a college degree. This desktop diploma is completely customizable to fit any major, achievements, graduation year, and school pride. To place an order, you may do so online.

Grad Expo

For fall 2018 planned graduates.

Grad Expo will take place in the Nazareth Great Room on Tuesday, December 11, 2018, 2–6 p.m. Grad Expo is an event that provides a "one-stop" opportunity for planned graduates to clear from campus. Students planning to graduate will receive an e-mail invitation prior to the event. 


Adult Undergraduate and Graduate Studies Students: 866-492-7877 or 651-628-3400;

Dual Enrollment Students: 888-216-0069 or 651-631-5300;

Traditional Undergraduate Students: 800-692-4020, ext. 5119; or 651-631-5119;

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