Frequently Asked Questions About Graduation

Q: What is the best way for me to ensure I have met all of my degree requirements and can graduate on time?

A: Meeting with your advisor each semester to review your academic progress is critical in ensuring you will graduate when expected. This will keep you aware of the remaining requirements that you must fulfill prior to graduating and keep you on track to do so. It is especially important to meet with your advisor before or during the registration period prior to the semester in which you plan on graduating. Finally, it is important to keep in mind that the student has the ultimate responsibility of his/her schedule and academic plans, including adherence to all deadlines set by the University as indicated on the academic calendar and meeting degree requirements as specified in the VCU Undergraduate Bulletin.

Q: When do I need to apply for graduation?

A: You should apply for graduation at the beginning of the semester in which all requirements are to be completed. Your advisor will email you with detailed instructions on how to apply to graduate as well as how to complete the graduation application packet.

Q: What are the degree requirements that I should be aware of when applying to graduate

A: HPEX students should have met the following requirements prior to graduation:

  • All university core, general education, HPEX collateral, and major concentration requirements
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher
  • At least 120 total earned credit hours at the end of their final semester
  • At least 45 upper level credits
  • A minimum grade of “C” in all HPEX courses including internships
  • At least 30 of final 45 credits must be completed at VCU
  • Complete at least 25% of credits at VCU

Q: What if I realize I am not going to complete my degree requirements by the end of the term for which I applied? What should I do?

A: Contact your advisor for further information as soon as possible.

Q: What is the difference between a diploma ceremony and a commencement ceremony?

A: The KHS department will hold a diploma ceremony for all HPEX graduates. This ceremony is usually held on Friday evening before the university commencement ceremony on Saturday. Students will receive a letter from the department with information about the diploma ceremony. The KHS diploma ceremony gives our department the opportunity to recognize our students individually and celebrate alongside friends and family. The commencement ceremony is held at the Richmond Coliseum and brings together the entire university.

Q: Can I walk during the spring commencement even though I plan to graduate during the summer?

A: Yes, the student’s dean may grant permission to participate in spring commencement exercises, provided the student will complete their degree with six or fewer credit hours during the summer semester.

Q: Can I graduate and still take courses in a future semester at VCU?

A: Yes, however you must re-enroll as a non-degree seeker or be admitted to another degree program. Courses taken after the awarding of your degree cannot be applied to that degree program.

Q: Is there a commencement ceremony for students who graduate in August?

A: No, there is no commencement ceremony held in August. August graduates are included in the following December ceremony or if they are completing six or fewer credits in the summer semester they may take part in the May ceremony.

Q: Will I receive my diploma at the commencement ceremony?

A: No. May, August and December diplomas are available for pickup during allotted times or mailed approximately 6 to 8 weeks after the graduation date. Otherwise they are mailed to the address you provided when applying to graduate. Please refer to the Commencement Website for up-to-date information.