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Commencement Ceremony

The 2015 Commencement Ceremony will be held Friday, May 15 at 6:30 p.m. on the Chester Campus.  Watch the event live

Caps and Gowns

Students who have applied for graduation and indicated on their application that they planned to march in the commencement ceremony will be sent a letter detailing graduation information from the Vice President of Learning and Student Success in late March 2015. If you decide NOT to participate in the ceremony, please e-mail All students who indicated on their graduation application that they plan to march in the commencement ceremony must RSVP to by April 24, 2015 to reserve their seat at the ceremony.

If you are participating in the College’s 2015 commencement exercises, you will need to purchase your cap and gown (regalia) at the bookstore on either the Chester or Midlothian Campus.

  • Regalia sales will begin April 20, 2015. If you plan to order in person at the bookstore, regalia will be available for purchase until May 14, 2015. No regalia will be sold on the day of commencement. Please plan appropriately.
  • Collars are not required for women and will not be sold with the package.
  • The cost for a gown/cap/tassel is $25.
  • Try on your gown/cap and make any exchanges to a different size if needed. Keep your receipt for exchanges. Exchanges need to be made well in advance.
  • The first pack of announcements (12 per pack) will be free for graduates. Additional packs can be purchased for $5.00 per pack. Announcements are available at the bookstore April 20 - May 14, 2015, or until the supply is exhausted.
  • Graduates who are members of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society wear gold tassels and stoles which will also be obtained through the college bookstore. Students need to indicate to bookstore staff that they are a member of PTK when they pick up their cap and gown. Students who have questions may telephone the bookstore in Chester at 804-777-9166 or in Midlothian at 804-378-3394 or via email at PTK members may only wear gold tassels and honors stoles—no other PTK regalia is permitted. PTK members must be in good academic standing with their chapters in order to wear any PTK regalia at commencement.

If you have any questions regarding regalia purchases or invitations, please contact the bookstore.

Other Important Information

  • Keep your address/phone numbers current in the Student Information System in myTyler. You will receive several important mailings from the College at this address.
  • Diplomas are ordered within a month of the ceremony, and you will be notified via mail when you can pick up your diploma on campus. Diplomas that are not picked up will be mailed to the address listed on your myTyler account after a specific period of time. It normally takes 8-10 weeks to receive the diploma after ordering. You do not receive your diploma on the day of graduation.
  • If you need proof of graduation after June 1, 2015, please follow college policy and request an official transcript from the college. Graduation will be denoted on your transcript within 3 weeks of graduation
  • There is no limit on the number of guests. The ceremony is held outside.
  • If you have additional questions regarding commencement, e-mail the graduation coordinators at

The Day of the Ceremony

Participants must check-in on May 15, 2015 between 4:45 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. in the Nicholas Student Center. Individuals who arrive after this time will not be permitted to participate in the commencement ceremony.

Graduation candidates typically wear black or dark clothes beneath their gowns. Dark, comfortable shoes are also recommended. Restrooms will be available for robing, but personal belongings should not be left in these rooms. These rooms will not be secured during the ceremony, and the College cannot be responsible for lost items.

The commencement ceremony will be held outdoors. Participants and their guests are encouraged to pay careful attention to local weather forecasts and dress appropriately for predicted temperatures.

In the event of inclement weather, participants and their guests should telephone 804-594-1425 or check for special instructions. The absence of any special announcement indicates that the ceremony will be held as scheduled. If the ceremony is cancelled on Friday, May 15, 2015, it will be held on Saturday, May 16 at 10:00 a.m. at the Chester Campus.

Participants with special parking needs must contact Mr. Frank Medaglia, Chief of Campus Security, at 804-594-1414 (Midlothian) or, at 804-706-5017 (Chester) no later than April 17, 2015.

Graduates with special mobility needs must contact Heather Atkinson at 804-706-5226 or email no later than April 17, 2015. 

Please remember that participation in the commencement ceremony does not denote official certification of a degree or certificate. Official certification of graduation is only made when all curriculum requirements have been satisfactorily addressed and recorded in the Admissions and Records Office.

Letters will be forwarded to all Spring Semester 2015 graduates in late summer with information on diploma pick-up. Diplomas that are not picked up by the designated deadline will be mailed. Please remember to keep your mailing address current in the Student Information System in myTyler.

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