The Commencement ceremony that takes place in the May following the completion of your degree is your official graduation ceremony. You are invited to participate fully in all events of that weekend. Make sure you leave an updated address on file with the Registrar's Office.
How You Will Be Contacted
All Commencement information is sent via email to your W&M account. Even after you leave campus we will continue to include you (via W&M email) in our Commencement informational emails. If you inactivate your account you will not get the information. If you use an alternate provider please make sure you forward your W&M email. By following these simple procedures you should expect to receive all of the May Commencement information by email. Those who wish to participate in the May ceremony must RSVP via the online form. You will receive notification after the university's winter break regarding this process. By completing the RSVP and indicating you are walking in the main ceremony you will be eligible to request tickets. Only graduating students participating (walking) in the main ceremony will have the opportunity to request guest tickets.
If are returning for the May ceremony it is your responsibility to inform your department chair that you will be in attendance. By contacting your department they can advise you regarding their procedures for returning graduates and will know to call your name at the departmental diploma presentation.
There are a number of reasons we do not host a mid-year Commencement Ceremony. Even though William & Mary has relatively few students who complete their degrees mid-year (usually 250-300 people, including both undergraduate and graduate students), the cost of multiple graduation ceremonies is prohibitive. The primary factor, however, is it isn't possible to determine whether or not mid-year degree candidates have actually graduated until final grades are calculated late in December. By that time, the winter break has begun, residence halls are closed, and the campus community has scattered. We sincerely hope that mid-year graduates and their families will be able to come back to Williamsburg in May to enjoy the unmatched pomp and circumstance of a William & Mary Commencement.