Congratulations! All your hard work has (almost) paid off.
How to Apply
To qualify for graduation, you must:
- have completed the requirements of one of the designated degree programs with a minimum of 60 semester hours of credit together with a minimum GPA of 2.0 ("C") at Southern State (see program outlines for specific requirements);
- have earned at least 20 semester hours of credit at Southern State if receiving an associate degree or 18 semester hours of credit at Southern State if receiving a one-year certificate (developmental courses numbered below 100 are taken in addition to any degree program and may not be used to satisfy basic degree requirements; students may use up to six hours of remedial classes numbered 100 and above as electives in their programs);
- have submitted an Application for a Diploma to the Records Office one month prior to the start of the semester in which you expect to graduate, and;
- pay the required graduation fee at the time of application in the Bookstore.
- Any financial obligations owed to the college must be paid in full before a diploma will be released. If you are unsure if you owe money, contact Student Accounts at 800.628.7722, x4698 2652. If you owe child care fees, contact x2629 or x4629.
- All students who have applied for graduation will receive an RSVP card by mail approximately 4 weeks before the ceremony. This RSVP card must be returned if you plan to participate in the ceremony.
Order Your Graduation Regalia
Order your graduation regalia (cap, gown, tassel) in advance of your ceremony from the Bookstore.
- Students may pick up their cap and gown at the bookstore where they were ordered before Thursday, April 30. You may not walk in the ceremony if you do not have a black cap and gown.
- PTK stoles, tassels and/or cords may be ordered by PTK members on the PTK website.
- SGA pins may be obtained by Student Government Association members from their Advisor.
- Military ID’s or DD Form 214’s will be required for Veteran graduates to pick up their Americana honor cord, awarded in appreciation of their military service, at at a booth in Central’s lobby the day of graduation.
Prepare for Graduation Day
Find out what to expect at your ceremony, from when to arrive to the significance of the procession and how to cross the stage.
- The graduation ceremony, from the time students walk in and file out, is called “commencement” and only lasts approximately one hour. Graduates should check in between 5:30 and 6:15 pm, Friday, May 8. DO NOT BE LATE! Graduation will march on. This is when you will receive your name card, honor cord (eligibility based upon accumulative GPA at the end of Fall semester) and a graduation sheet.
- There is no formal rehearsal for the ceremony, although a detailed explanation of the ceremony will be reviewed during line up. You will be assisted as you proceed to the Patriot Center to your seat. Your name will be called and you will approach the stage to be presented a diploma cover the night of graduation. Your official diploma will come by mail approximately 4-6 weeks after graduation.
- Grad Images (formerly USA Foto), professional photographer, will take photos of each graduate as they shake hands with the President. Approximately two weeks following the ceremony, you will receive one free proof along with information regarding purchase. A designated area will be roped off for personal photos taken by friends and family.
- There will be a videographer taping the ceremony and you will have the opportunity to give your testimonial prior to commencement.
- Commencement is intended to be a festive occasion celebrating the accomplishments of our students. However, it is also ceremonial. When wearing academic dress, it is usual to dress formally and soberly beneath the gown; so, for example, males would typically wear a white shirt and tie, or military dress, and females would wear equivalent attire. Comfortable shoes are recommended for safe mobility; however, flip flops are not considered appropriate.
- It is particularly important that students respect their fellow students and the faculty, administrators and guests who have come to witness and participate in the conferring of their degrees. For this reason, graduates are expected to return to their seats after they have walked and remain there until all students have walked and the members of the stage party have exited the stage.
Prepare your Family & Guests
Share the details with your family & friends who will be joining you at your graduation so they can plan their day- from how and when to arrive to what to do after the ceremony to continue the celebration.
- Share these details with your family and friends who will be joining you at your graduation so they can plan their day, from how and when to arrive to what to do after the ceremony to continue the celebrations.
- Seating is on a first come, first serve basis. Ushers will be available to direct guests to seating. Since seating for guests is on bleachers, reserved seating will be provided for the elderly and disabled. This seating can only be reserved by check marking the appropriate box on your RSVP card that comes in the mail and providing a phone number staff can call regarding this request.
- It is appropriate for family and guests to remain in their seats for the approximate one hour commencement ceremony.
- Out of respect of the graduates, wandering around the floor of the stadium and visiting with guests in the stands is frowned upon during the ceremony.
- By law there is no smoking within 20 feet of the Patriot Center doors. Food and drink may not be brought into the Center.
- Personal cameras are permitted, however, photos and videos may not be taken from the foot of the stage. A designated area will be roped off for personal photos taken by friends and family.
- Please remember to turn off or silence your cell phones during the ceremony.
- Thank you for helping us make your graduation a memorable one for all.
- Flowers will be available to purchase for graduates in the Patriot Center lobby. This service is provided by Student Government,
Arrange Special Needs Requirements
Students with special needs, please contact Disability Services to make arrangements.
Celebrate your Graduation!
- Faculty and Staff will line a corded off lane as you exit the building to cheer your accomplishment. Your family will find you on the grassy area outside of the Patriot Center immediately following the ceremony.
- Police will provide assistance to expedite the exiting of traffic.
- Congratulations! And, remember, “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.” - Benjamin Franklin
We hope you’ll keep in touch with us through Facebook!
Friday, May 6, 2016 at 7:00pm
Candidates should arrive between 5:30pm and 6:15pm in the lobby of Central Campus.
Each year the college attempts to obtain information about our graduates after graduation to determine how well we did our job. The results from the survey are used to help us improve the educational experience for future students. Our ability to obtain your feedback is also vital to our continued accreditation.