Frequently Asked Questions

Graduation FAQs

What do I need to do to graduate?

Students must apply to graduate. The Graduation Application is available through your Atlas account and must be completed and submitted online.

Does it cost anything to graduate?

There is no Graduation Application Fee. Your Student Activities Fee covers the costs associated with graduation and the commencement ceremony.

Does the graduation application need to be submitted by a certain date?

Yes, there is a Graduation Application Deadline for each term and your application to graduate must be submitted through your Atlas account. Please see our Important Dates & Deadlines calendar for the Graduation Application Deadlines.

Can a student who is graduating in August attend the commencement ceremony of the same year?

No, the student will have to wait until the next commencement ceremony, which is held the following year.

How do I change my graduation date?

You can change your graduation date by sending an e-mail through your Atlas account to the Records/Graduation department.

How many guests can I invite to graduation and does each person (including children) need a ticket? Am I able to get extra tickets?

You will receive 5 guest tickets.  Tickets are required for every guest 9 months or older.

Will I receive any information about my graduation status and the commencement ceremony?

Yes. Acknowledgement of your graduation application will be e-mailed to your Atlas account.  Students participating in the commencement ceremony will be sent a detailed letter informing them about ceremony related information.

What do I wear for graduation?

The commencement gown is thin, it is recommended that business attire be worn underneath.
Women: Dress or blouse and slacks/skirt. If you're wearing heels, be sure to try them on before the ceremony to ensure they are comfortable. You will be walking on cement floors. Low heeled or flat shoes are highly recommended.
Men: Dress shirt with slacks (tie optional) and dress shoes (i.e. no sneakers).

What are the restroom procedures once seated inside the arena?

The graduation ceremony varies in length depending on the number of graduates who participate that year. We encourage graduates to stay in their seats throughout the duration of the ceremony, with the exception of when it is time for your entire row to cross the stage to receive your diploma. If you do need to use the restroom during the ceremony, we ask you to quietly and quickly walk to the NEAREST Exit. Please be sure to bring all of your belongings with you. You will be asked, by one of the College's Commencement Marshals, to turn in your diploma cover until your return to the Arena.  When returning to the seats, please be prepared not to sit in the seat in which you were originally seated. The graduation staff will direct you to an available seat.

Where should I park for the commencement ceremony and do I need a parking permit?

You will receive a parking pass that MUST be visibly displayed on your vehicle’s dashboard.  You are required to park in the areas specifically designated for graduates.

Where should I stand to wait until it’s time to go inside the arena?

You will be required to wait in a specific area prior to entering the arena.  Please follow the instructions of the College's Commencement Marshals and stay in the designated areas until instructed to enter.

What can I expect when walking inside the arena?  What are the seating procedures?

There are no specific seat assignments.  Once you receive your diploma, you may not be returning to the seat you originally sat in.  If you brought any personal items with you (not recommended), remember to take them with you when you go to receive your diploma.  Again, keep in mind that you will need both hands free when you go to receive your diploma.  Do not bring anything that may be lost.

What is the proper way to receive the diploma and the procedure for walking on stage?

When accepting your diploma, you will need both hands free.  You will accept your diploma with your left hand and shake with your right hand simultaneously.   Follow the instructions given to you during the Graduation Information Session (usually held in March).

Where do I tell my guests to meet me after the ceremony?

It is highly recommended that you make arrangements, prior to the ceremony, to meet with them at a specific location after the ceremony ends so that you can take additional photographs with family members if you wish.

When do I request my final official Valencia College transcript showing my date of graduation and the degree I was awarded?

You may request official transcripts through your Atlas account at any time. However, make sure to indicate HOLD FOR DEGREE if you want your transcript to reflect your degree information.

If you have additional questions or concerns, e-mail the Records/Graduation department.

Will I receive my diploma the day of the commencement?

No. Diplomas are mailed to students approximately 6-8 weeks after the end of the semester in which they graduate.  At Commencement, students will receive a diploma cover with a message from the College until degrees have been certified. For most students, if your graduation date is in:

Your diploma should arrive by March
Your diploma should arrive in July
Your diploma should arrive in October

Diplomas are printed and mailed using the diploma name and address we have listed for you in Atlas. Be sure to update your information in Atlas. If you no longer have access to your Atlas account you may send a written letter which includes the information listed below. We will not change the name on your diploma without written authorization from you (including your original signature; therefore, faxed or e-mailed requests cannot be accepted).

You may order a replacement diploma by submitting a Duplicate Diploma Request form which must include the following:

  • Your name
  • Your Valencia Identification Number (VID) or Social Security Number (SSN)
  • Your Date of Birth
  • Your Date of Graduation (Month and Year)
  • Address to which replacement diploma should be mailed
  • Your signature
  • A check or money order in the amount of $15.00 payable to Valencia College for the Duplicate Diploma Request Fee.

Send the Duplicate Diploma Request form to:

Valencia College
Records/Graduation Office
1800 South Kirkman Road
Orlando, FL 32811

I received a regret letter stating my degree requirements were not met; now what?

The letter will indicate why you did not meet graduation requirements. You will need to meet with an academic advisor, counselor, or Career Program Advisor for additional assistance. Once you have met your graduation requirement(s) you will need to submit a new Graduation Application. Please see our Important Dates & Deadlines calendar for the Graduation Application deadlines.