Commencement Information

Spring Commencement

Date: May 4, 2018
Time: 10 a.m.
Location: Forum River Center
(301 Tribune St, Rome, GA 30161)
Graduates will line up 90 minutes prior to the start of commencement. Please arrive no later than 8:30 a.m. for check-in and lineup.

If you have questions regarding commencement, please contact the Registrar’s office at 706-233-7205 or

Attendance at commencement is strongly encouraged!  The commencement ceremony is where your degree is conferred and where you receive your diploma. If you are unable to attend, please notify the Registrar’s Office as soon as possible at Diplomas will be mailed after the ceremony to those that are unable to attend to the home address on record at the time.
Directions & Parking
Guests may park at the Forum River Center or the Ledbetter College of Business. Shuttles will be provided to and from each location. Please encourage guests to car pool and ride the shuttles.
Ticket Information
ALL commencement guests must present a ticket for entry into the ceremony (this includes infants and children). Each graduate participating in the commencement ceremony is allotted guest tickets. Ticket allotment and distribution details will be sent to each graduate via their Shorter email address. If additional tickets are needed, please visit the Graduation Ticket Exchange site. Please note that tickets cannot be distributed to graduates holding an account balance. If you owe a balance, please call 706-233-7983 or 706-233-7313 ASAP.
Commencement vs. Graduation
There are important differences between commencement and graduation and we want you to be comfortable with these common university terms.

Commencement refers to the ceremony where you share the excitement and importance of your academic accomplishments with peers, family, and friends. It is also a time for the university, president, deans, program directors, faculty, and staff to pay special tribute to you for the outstanding efforts you have shown in earning your degree. Shorter University holds one ceremony in May, to celebrate the graduates for the summer, fall, and spring. There is no registration fee to attend commencement; however, graduates will need to secure academic regalia, and any charges affiliated with traveling to the ceremony location.

Graduation, on the other hand, is the process of submitting a graduation application, completing all academic requirements for the degree, and settling all financial obligations, among a few other audits/assessments. The administrative process of degree conferral will indicate your official date of graduation. Conferral date is defined as the date on which your degree is officially awarded. There are three official conferral (degree posting) dates per year as published on the academic calendar. There is a one-time, nonrefundable graduation fee per degree. The fee covers administrative costs associated with completing the graduation review and diploma preparations. Also note, that you will receive your diploma whether you attend May commencement or not.

Cap and Gowns/Regalia

Candidates for graduation will receive an email sent to their hawkmail account containing cap and gown ordering instructions. If you are planning to attend the upcoming spring commencement ceremony and have not received that email then please email and someone will review your account promptly.

Each graduate must wear his or her own cap and gown to commencement. Caps and gowns for all graduates are ordered and paid for online individually by each graduate. Please note that cap and gown fees paid to the vendor are separate from the graduation application fee paid to Shorter. Orders must be made by the deadline in order to receive your cap and gown in time to walk on graduation day. After the deadline, a cap and gown is not guaranteed and graduates may be responsible for paying rush shipping/production fees.

A blue and white honor cord will be provided at commencement during check-in to undergraduate students earning Latin Honors. The criteria used for determining Latin Honors is located in the academic catalog academic policies & procedures / degrees with honors section.

Only approved Shorter Academic stoles/cords may be worn over a graduation gown. All other cords and stoles must on the approved list held by the Registrar’s Office. To determine whether or not other cords or stoles are on the approved list, please email a picture of it along with a description to and someone will promptly reply to your question.

IMPORTANT: Commencement is an academic ceremony meriting dignity in dress and behavior. Attire under the cap and gown should be dark slacks and shoes for men and dark clothing and shoes for ladies. No graduate is allowed to place anything on his/her cap, gown, or hood. Graduates who arrive with decorated or embellished caps or hoods will have their hood/cap confiscated. They may process in and sit with the other graduates, but will not be permitted to walk across the stage. A security officer will be present to escort those from the line who are non-compliant.

Personal Item Storage
There will be no storage or security for personal items left in the check in area at the commencement site.
Graduate Lineup
Graduates will line up 90 minutes prior to the start of commencement. Please arrive no later than 8:30 a.m. for check-in and lineup.
Graduates will be presented with a diploma cover when walking across the stage. After the ceremony, diplomas will be distributed at the check in location for commencement participants and mailed to those that were unable to attend.
Graduation invitations/announcements can be ordered through Jostens at or 1-800-225-3687.
Financial Obligations
All outstanding balances, graduation fees, library fees, fines, etc., must be paid in full in order to participate in the graduation ceremony or receive a diploma.
Watch Graduation Live!
Graduation can be watched live online at 10 am or replayed later on website.

A hi-definition free MP4 video download of the commencement ceremony can be provided upon email request to

Congratulations, Graduates!!


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