Undergraduate Commencement Guide
On Saturday, May 20, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. the Undergraduate Ceremony for all students receiving associate's and bachelor's degrees will be held at the Alumni Healthful Living Center, and will be approximately two and one-half hours in length.
Invitations and Tickets
Invitations and tickets will be available at the Blue and Gold Campus Bookstore starting April 5, 2017. The Blue and Gold Campus Bookstore hours are Monday-Thursday, 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.; Friday, 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.; and Saturday, 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. Each graduating senior candidate is provided with a maximum of five tickets. Additional tickets are not available due to space constraints.
Graduating seniors are advised to report to the Alumni Healthful Living Center between 1:00 and 1:15 p.m. on Saturday, May 20. They should enter the campus by way of the access road next to the Church in the Acres on Wilbraham Road and enter the building through the rear door of the Multipurpose Room. Parking is available in the lot behind the Alumni Healthful Living Center. Graduating seniors must check in and should be dressed in their caps and gowns, as well as appropriate attire. Only graduates who check-in will have their names read during the ceremony. Graduating students are asked not to attach items such as flowers, ribbons, or signs to their caps and gowns. There will be no rehearsal.
Caps and Gowns
Caps and gowns will be available for purchase at the Blue and Gold Campus Bookstore starting April 5, 2017. The cost for an undergraduate cap, gown, and tassel is $32.00. The Blue and Gold Campus Bookstore hours are Monday-Thursday, 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.; Friday, 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.; and Saturday, 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.
Diplomas and Honors
Graduating seniors will receive their actual diploma on stage. If you do not attend Commencement, your diploma will be mailed to your home address 2-3 weeks after Commencement. You may arrange to pick up the diploma by contacting Rebecca Sargent in Student Administrative Services at 413-796-2080.
Honors are awarded to Undergraduate students for superior scholastic achievement. Students are awarded honors if, in addition to satisfying all other requirements for the degree, they have completed a minimum of 60 credit hours at the University and have earned the required grade point average.
Cum Laude requires a grade point average of at least 3.30.
Magna Cum Laude requires a grade point average of at least 3.60.
Summa Cum Laude requires a grade point average of at least 3.80.
Students who graduate with between 45 and 59 credit hours completed at the University and who have a grade point average in those courses of 3.50 or higher graduate "with Honors"
Any honors designation will be on the diploma, printed in the program, and announced when the diploma is awarded. Undergraduate degree candidates who qualify for honors will be given their honor cord at Commencement check-in.
The deadline for settling all accounts at the Student Administrative Services Office in order to receive a diploma at Commencement is Thursday, May 18, 2017.
Students who borrow under the Federal Direct Loan Program are required to complete an online exit interview. The Direct Loan Servicing website is https://www.studentloans.gov. Students who borrow under the Federal Perkins Loan Program are also required to complete an online exit interview . The Perkins Loan exit interview site is https://www.uasexit.com
Photographs will be taken of each graduate as they receive congratulations from President Caprio. After March 1, log on to http://www.events.lifetouch.com/westernnewenglanduniversity to preregister your email address. As soon as your Commencement photos are processed you will receive an email from Lifetouch with instructions for viewing and purchasing your photos online.
Family and Guests
Guests must enter through the main entrance of the Alumni Healthful Living Center and must have a ticket to enter. Doors open at 1:00 p.m. The ceremony will begin promptly at 2:00 p.m. and will last approximately 2 1/2 hours. Seating will be in chairs, not bleachers.
Parking is available at various locations on campus. Guests will be directed to parking areas as they approach campus. As a convenience to guests, shuttle service vans circle the outer campus parking lots on a continuing basis for one hour before and one hour after the ceremony.
Guests or graduates in need of special arrangements must contact the University. Please contact the office of Student Activities and Leadership Development at 413-782-1203, no later than May 8. There will be a limit of one family member sitting with a guest who requires special accommodations.
Accessible parking near the Alumni Healthful Living Center is limited to vehicles with designated license plates or placards. Drop-off of elderly guests in front of the Alumni Healthful Living Center is available. The University does not provide wheelchairs for guests.
Assisted listening devices are available for use during commencement. Please contact Bill Arnold, Senior Manager of Media Services, at 413-782-1639 to reserve a device.
Ceremony Participation Eligibility
All August 2016, October 2016, February 2017, and May 2017 graduates are eligible to participate in the Commencement ceremony. Graduating seniors are asked to notify Student Administrative Services at 413-796-2080 immediately if they change their mind about participating in the Commencement ceremony.
Graduating seniors who will be within six credits of graduation as of May 20, 2017, may be eligible to participate in the Commencement ceremony. A Participation Request Form must be sent to the Dean's office prior to March 31, 2017.