Commencement at Aquinas College

FAQs

Graduation Requirements

What is my Primary Major/Degree Title and why is it important?

Your Degree Title is either a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, etc. Your Degree Title correlates to your chosen major. For example, if a student is a History major, they will earn a Bachelor of Arts. If a student is double majoring, than they must pick a Primary Major. If a student is double majoring in History (BA) and Psychology (BS), they can choose if they want the Bachelor of Arts or the Bachelor of Science to be their Degree Title. A student who is double majoring will not earn two degrees. They must pick one or the other. The Primary Degree choice will be printed on the diploma and called at Commencement. Both majors will be reflected on the transcript.

What if I have a financial hold on my account?

Your diploma will not be released to you unless you have a zero balance on your account. If you are unsure of your balance, you can check on MyAQ or contact Student Accounts at 616-632-2864. Once your balance is paid, Student Accounts will inform the Graduation Auditor and your diploma will be released.

What if I need to postpone my graduation?

If you need to be moved to the next graduation period, please contact the Graduation Auditor.

How do I know if I qualify for Honor Cords?

If your GPA is a 3.5 or above, you will qualify for Honor Cords. Your cumulative GPA can be viewed on MyAQ. If you have any other questions, please contact the Graduation Auditor.

What if I don’t know if I am approved for graduation?

If you are approved for graduation, you should have received a scan of your completed Application for Degree Candidacy. The App for Degree should be used by the student to verify all of the remaining requirements for graduation. If you submitted your App for Degree to the Registrar’s Office and have not received a scan, please contact the Graduation Auditor.

Why does the Registrar’s Office need a copy of my High School transcript?

To maintain our accreditation and to follow Federal Compliance standards, Aquinas College needs to have a final, official copy of all graduate’s high school transcripts. Often, the transcript sent during the Admissions process was while you were still enrolled in high school. If we do not have a final transcript on file for you, it was noted on your Application for Degree Candidacy. Your diploma will not be released to you until the transcript is received.

Commencement Day

When will doors open for entry into the Commencement Venues?

STURRUS SPORTS AND FITNESS CENTER: Entrance into the Coach Bo Court will begin at 12:00 pm. All individuals will require a ticket for entry into the Center.

For those with Accessibility Seating Tickets, a separate line will be available and entry into the STurrus Sports and Fitness Center will begin at 11:30 am. 

ALTERNATE VIEWING LOCATIONS: Entry will begin at 12:00 pm at Wege Ballroom/Loutit Room and Kretschmer Recital Hall. Guests may choose to go to either location for viewing, however, Event Staff may need to direct guests to the other location if capacity is reached at either site. All individuals will require a ticket for entry into either of the Alternate Viewing Locations.

Please keep in mind that guest seating at Coach Bo Court will be bleacher seating and that stadium seats/chair backs will not be allowed. We ask that everyone be mindful of others also trying to be seated and that we are hoping to accommodate as many people comfortably as possible. Infant seats, strollers and large bags/backpacks will also not be allowed into the bleacher seating.

Seating in all venues is on a first come, first served basis - no saving of seats will be permitted and all guests will be asked to be seated before the Commencement processional begins at the Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center. No one will be allowed in the hallways once the procession begins and any late arriving guests will not be allowed to enter until after the procession is complete.

Can we reserve seats for others?

Seating in all venues is on a first come, first served basis - no saving of seats will be permitted and all guests will be asked to be seated before the Commencement processional begins at the Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center. No one will be allowed in the hallways once the procession begins and any late arriving guests will not be allowed to enter until after the procession is complete.

What if I arrive late, or Coach Bo Court is full?

ALTERNATE VIEWING LOCATIONS: Entry will begin at 12:00 p.m. at Wege Ballroom/Loutit Room and Kretschmer Recital Hall. Guests may choose to go to either location for viewing, however, Event Staff may need to direct guests to the other location if capacity is reached. All individuals will require a ticket for entry into either of the Alternate Viewing Locations.

Where and when do Graduates enter and line up?

ALL GRADUATES WILL NEED TO CHECK IN AT THE ACADEMIC BUILDING NO LATER THAN 12:15 PM. You will receive a card upon registering which has your name printed on it. DO NOT LOSE OR WRITE ON THIS CARD Please keep this card with you at all times as it will be required to have your name read as you cross the stage.

Graduates will be lined up in alphabetical order by degree and procession to the Sturrus Sports ns Fitness Center will begin at 12:50 pm. 

How do we get extra tickets to the Commencement Ceremony if they are available?

Each graduate may request up to 4 tickets for entrance into the Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center. Tickets will be available for pick up at Gradfest on April 29th or by contacting the Dean of Students’ Office beginning on Tuesday, April 30th. If there are extra tickets for the Commencement ceremony, they will be available on a first come, first served basis at the Dean of Students’ Office (AB107) beginning on Monday, May 6th. Please watch for any updates to ticket availability on The Moose.

Are the other locations on campus where family and friends can watch the Commencement Ceremony?

In addition to tickets for the Commencement Ceremony, students may request up to 4 additional tickets to an Alternate Viewing Location where the Commencement Ceremony will be live-streamed. Your initial allotment of up to 4 tickets will be available for pick up at Gradfest on April 29th. If you are unable to attend Gradfest, tickets may be requested by contacting the Dean of Students’ Office beginning on April 30th. Any extra tickets over the initial allotment will be available on a first come, first served basis beginning on Monday, May 6th at the Dean of Students’ Office (AB107). Please watch for any updates to ticket availability on The Moose.

Alternate Viewing Locations:

  • Wege Ballroom (snacks/beverages will be available)
  • Loutit Room - Special Needs Seating
  • Kretschmer Recital Hall

What if I have family members or other loved ones who cannot attend the Ceremony?

The 2019 Baccalaureate and Commencement ceremonies will be live-streamed on Facebook live on this site: https://www.facebook.com/aquinascollegegr/

What if I have family members who will need accessible seating?

Please complete the online form on the Commencement page of the Aquinas website requesting accessibility seating for any family member needing accommodation. You may also complete the form at Gradfest on Monday, April 29th. Coach Bo Court will have a separate section available for accessibility seating guests and one accompanying family member. A designated accessibility seating ticket will be needed for access to this section. These designated tickets may be obtained at Gradfest by exchanging one regular Commencement ticket for each individual needing accessibility seating and a second ticket regular Commencement ticket for his/her accompanying family member. These tickets are counted as part of your allotment of up to 4 tickets to the Commencement Ceremony.

The Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center Parking Lot has been designated for special needs parking - please see parking diagram for more information. Golf carts will be available to assist guests in moving from different venues and Photo Spots.

What if I have family members or guests in need of translation assistance?

A table will be set up in the Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center lobby for those guests who would like to pick up a ceremony schedule in Spanish and/or would need translation assistance with directions and seating. Please stop by the table and our event staff would be happy to assist your guests.

Where can I pick up my tickets on the day of Commencement?

There is a “Will Call” station set up in the front entrance of Sturrus Sports and Fitness Center for Ceremony tickets. If you have requested alternate viewing tickets, the “Will Call” for alternate viewing tickets will be set up at both Wege Ballroom and Kretschmer Recital Hall.

Where is the best place to park?

Please review the separate parking diagram for information about available parking lots, special accessibility needs parking and Photo Spots. Event Staff will also be stationed around the campus to answer any questions.

What is the “Name Pronunciation Form” used for?

The Name Pronunciation Form is a form that lets us know the name you would like announced when you walk across the stage on commencement day and how to pronounce your name correctly. You can choose to have your first and last name called or you can choose to have your first, middle and last name called.

What if I forget to bring my “Name Pronunciation Form” to GradFest?

No worries, we will have extra copies at GradFest for you to fill out at the name pronunciation table, along with any help you might need completing the form. If you can’t attend GradFest, then you need to email your Name Pronunciation Form to Kristy Poprawski at kpp001@aquinas.edu in the Academic Affairs Office.

Who will I walk with at Commencement?

All graduates will be lined up alphabetically according to their Degree Title. It does not correlate to your major. All Bachelor of Science graduates will line up together, no matter if you are a Biology major or a Mathematics major. If you are a double major and are unsure as to which is your Primary Major, please contact the Graduation Auditor before you order your Cap and Gown.

Post-Commencement

When will I receive my diploma?

Students typically receive their diploma in the mail 4-6 weeks after their graduation date. The three graduation periods are December, May, and August. If you have moved or would like your diploma mailed to a different address than what you listed on your Application for Degree Candidacy, please contact the Graduation Auditor.

What if I want to change the way my name is printed on my diploma?

Your diploma is a legal document and must reflect your legal name. To change how you would like your name printed on your diploma, it is important that you contact the Graduation Auditor as soon as possible to prevent misprints. If you are recently married or divorced, you will need to provide official documentation to the Registrar’s Office.

What if I need to order a final transcript for graduate school or employment?

A final transcript will be mailed to the student with their diploma. If you need an official copy of your transcript sent elsewhere, please go to www.getmytranscript.com. We work with the National Student Clearinghouse to provide transcripts in a timely and efficient manner. If you need your transcript to reflect your graduation, make sure to mark the “Hold for Degree” option when ordering your transcript.