Attending Commencement

For most World Campus undergraduate degrees, you will be invited to participate in commencement ceremonies at the University Park campus. Certain degrees offered via the World Campus have commencement at another Penn State campus. You will receive commencement information via your Penn State email account.

Commencement for students graduating in fall 2019 will take place December 21, 2019. Hotels near University Park fill fast, so make your travel plans early!

Undergraduate Students: How to Reserve a Seat at Commencement

In order to attend commencement, you may need to submit a form to reserve your seat. Find your program in the table below to determine whether you need to submit the form. If you do not plan to attend commencement, you do not need to submit the form. The deadline to submit the form to reserve your seat at commencement for fall 2019 is October 18, 2019.

Undergraduate Instructions for Attending Commencement
Academic Program Commencement Attendance Requirements

Associate's in Business Administration

Submit Associate Degree Alternative Site Form

Bachelor's in Business

Submit Bachelor's Degree Alternative Site Form

Associate's in Criminal Justice or Bachelor's in Accounting, Criminal Justice, or Marketing

Submit Associate or Bachelor's Degree Alternative Site Form only if attending commencement at a campus other than Harrisburg; otherwise no form is needed

Bachelor's in Finance or Software Engineering Submit Bachelor's Degree Alternative Site Form only if attending commencement at a campus other than Behrend; otherwise no form is needed
All Other Associate's and Bachelor's degrees

Submit Associate or Bachelor’s Degree Alternative Site Form only if attending commencement at a campus other than University Park; otherwise no form is needed

Alternative Commencement Site Forms:

Important: If you need to complete the Associate or Bachelor’s Alternative Site Form, you must submit it via fax to 814-865-3290, Attention: Graduation Coordinators; or via email to [email protected]

Graduate Students: How to Reserve a Seat at Commencement

Graduate students planning to attend commencement at University Park can reserve their seat through the Graduate School.

Graduate students who wish to attend commencement at another campus should contact the Penn State World Campus graduation coordinators at 814-863-5256 or [email protected]. Not all campuses offer commencement to graduate students each semester; there is no guarantee that you will be able to attend commencement at your requested campus.

Commencement Attire and Other Items

Cap and Gown

You can order a cap and gown online from the Penn State Bookstore, by ordering online, calling the Bookstore at 814-863-0205, option 9, or placing an order in person.

Academic Distinction Cords and Military Honor Cords

Students who are eligible to receive academic distinction cords will receive more information from their college. Military and veteran students will receive more information about military honor cords from Penn State World Campus. 

Class Rings and Personalized Announcements

You can order a Penn State class ring and personalized announcements on the Jostens website or by calling Jostens at 800-854-7464. When ordering through Jostens, select the campus where you plan to attend commencement. You will need to allow two to three weeks for processing printed announcements.

Commencement Programs

Unofficial programs are distributed at the commencement ceremony. If your intent to graduate is submitted late in the semester, your name will not appear in the program. To have your name included in the program, your intent to graduate must be submitted by the ninth week of the semester for spring, by the tenth week of the semester for summer, or by the eighth week of the semester for fall.

Learn More About Penn State Commencement

You can find out more, including calendars and instructions, about the University Park commencements on Penn State’s commencement page. For other campuses, you can contact the Registrar's Office at the campus where you plan to attend commencement.