A student graduates at the conclusion of the semester when all degree requirements have been completed.  The student must take a course of study that will result in graduation upon conclusion of that semester and apply for graduation by the deadline listed in the online University Course Schedule. It is important to understand that the student’s record becomes permanent upon graduation. Nothing is added, deleted, or changed on the student’s transcript after the graduation date.

There are three graduation dates each year: December, May and August.  Diplomas are mailed to students who successfully complete their degree studies following posting of grades and a final review of the permanent record, and if the student has no outstanding financial obligations.

Application for Graduation

All candidates for graduation at any of the three graduation periods must submit an application to the Office of the Registrar.

Graduation Month

Deadline to Apply


October 1


February 1


July 1

Applications received after the deadline will be considered for the next graduation. All students are required to pay a graduation processing fee.


The University has commencement ceremonies in December and May for those meeting the graduation requirements. December graduates participate in the December ceremony; May graduates participate in the May ceremony. Students completing graduation requirements in August receive certification from the Office of the Registrar that they have completed all requirements and receive their diplomas by mail. August graduates are invited to participate in the December commencement exercises.

Students who need no more than three (3) credits to earn their degree may participate in commencement exercises if they present a documented case of extreme hardship for participation which is approved by the Provost. For students to be eligible for the exception policy, they must have made satisfactory progress in their degree program in every semester of their attendance at Lewis, and they must have submitted an application for graduation in a timely manner. Such a petition must be filed with the Provost no later than two weeks prior to the scheduled commencement.

For this policy, the term “extreme hardship” includes only those circumstances beyond the control of the student. These circumstances would involve major illnesses or the impending death of the student, or loved one, significant financial or political crisis/burden making future semester participation nearly impossible, or a circumstance of similar magnitude. The desire to participate with one’s peers is an inadequate circumstance. Being three (3) credits from graduation is only a requisite to appealing to participate; it is not a request which by itself is deemed acceptable.