Graduation FAQs

Graduation | Graduation Instructions for Students | Application for Graduation

graduateIf I complete my degree requirements, will I automatically graduate?
In order to graduate and receive an Associates Degree from the college, you must apply, even if you are not planning to attend the Commencement Ceremony.

How do I apply to graduate?
Complete the Application for Graduation, and submit it to the Cashiers Office, with a $25 fee.  If you want to participate in the Commencement Ceremony, you must also purchase a cap and gown (additional $44). 

When do I have to apply?
It is prudent to apply before the beginning of what you expect will be your last semester of enrollment, so as to be certain the courses you are taking are sufficient to meet requirements.  The deadline is during that last semester of enrollment, with specific dates provided on our web site. 

The deadlines are:

  • November 1 for Fall graduation
  • March 1 for Spring graduation
  • July 1 for Summer graduation

* If the deadline date falls on a weekend or holiday, the deadline date will be the next business day.

I missed the deadline to apply to graduate?  Can I still apply?
Applications for graduation are accepted year round, however deadlines for semesters are firm.  Students applying after the deadline for a certain semester will automatically be placed in the next semester’s graduation. 

I finished my requirements in December.  Do I have to wait until May to get my Associates Degree?
Ocean County College now officially graduates students in January, and will now confer degrees three times per year – January, May, and August.  We will still have the one Commencement Ceremony in May, and all applicants for that academic year are eligible to participate.  Students who graduate in January are eligible to participate in the Commencement Ceremony the following May.

I want to graduate in May but I still have classes to complete.  Can I graduate if I did not finish all my classes?
Although you cannot officially graduate until all coursework is complete, you can participate in the Commencement Ceremony.  The Commencement Ceremony is open to all students who complete requirements during that academic year, which does include the upcoming summer terms.  The academic year runs from September through August. 

I graduated last May but I still had a class I had to complete and I’m taking it now.  What do I do to get my diploma?
If you still have incomplete requirements, you did not graduate (though you may have participated in the Commencement Ceremony, at which actual diplomas are not given).  Actual graduation requires all courses be successfully completed.  Many students participate in the Commencement Ceremony in May, and then complete requirements over the summer.  In this case, the graduation date, which will print on the diploma and the transcript, is in August.  If you completed or will complete the requirements in the next academic year (after August), and did not contact the college to request the extension, you need to complete and submit another graduation application.

How do I get my diploma?
Students can pick up diplomas in the Registration and Records Office, approximately two weeks after the official graduation date (exact dates for particular semesters are available on request and will be included with your Commencement Ceremony invitation).  Please bring identification. 

Students who live out of the area can submit a request for thier diplomas to be mailed by completing the Permission to Mail Diploma Form. The college will mail uncollected diplomas, but this will not take place until the following spring.  The college is not responsible for diplomas lost in the mail (usually due to a student moving and not providing the college with an updated address).  The college cannot reprint diplomas, so please be careful to get your diploma as soon as possible after it is available.  If you are out of the area, you can designate a family member to pick it up for you; just provide that person with a note authorizing it.

Other graduation notes: