Graduating This Semester: What You Need to Know

Graduation signifies an impressive accomplishment, and we at Penn State World Campus want to acknowledge our graduating students and help you mark the occasion. Here’s a quick guide to the steps you need to take and events you may want to attend.

Set your intent to graduate

Graduating students must notify the University of their intent to graduate.

The deadline to do this for students graduating in fall 2018 is Tuesday, September 4, and you can complete this action in LionPATH. View a tutorial to learn more about applying for graduation in LionPATH.

If your plans change later on and you no longer intend to graduate, you’ll need to contact your college and ask to reset your graduation date to a future semester.

Let your instructors know you plan to graduate

In addition, be sure to complete all of your course work and exams in a timely manner. Your instructors will need to be ready to submit your grades in time to meet graduation deadlines.

Plan ahead to attend commencement

World Campus students, like all Penn State students, are invited to attend commencement. Many programs have their commencement ceremonies at University Park, but some programs typically have commencement at other Penn State campuses.

You may wish to attend commencement with other students in your program, or at a campus near you. Depending on your preferences, you may need to submit a form to reserve your seat at commencement. The deadline to do this for students graduating in fall 2018 is Friday, October 26.

Note that not all campuses offer commencement for all degree programs, each semester. For more information about commencement at specific campuses, contact the Penn State World Campus graduation coordinators at 814-863-5256 or

You do not have to attend commencement to receive your diploma. Diplomas are mailed to all students approximately four to six weeks after commencement.

Read our instructions for students planning to attend commencement, including details about reserving your seat and commencement attire.

Make your travel arrangements early. Hotels near University Park tend to fill up quickly for graduation.

Plan to attend the Penn State World Campus graduation celebration

Penn State World Campus hosts a graduation celebration each semester for our graduates and their friends and families. This is different from Penn State’s official commencement ceremonies.

The Penn State World Campus celebration is typically a two-hour reception with a brief program and time for our graduates to meet each other and to meet faculty and staff members in person. You’re welcome to bring family and friends to join in the celebration with you. This event is held at the University Park campus, and students whose commencement ceremonies take place at University Park will receive an email invitation.

Find out more about our Penn State World Campus graduation celebration.

You are not required to attend commencement or the Penn State World Campus celebration. But we encourage you to attend either or both and celebrate your remarkable achievements!

Stay connected with the Penn State Alumni Association

After you graduate, be sure to update your contact information with the Penn State Alumni Association. This will ensure that you can stay in touch with Penn State and receive alumni communications. You can access your profile in the alumni directory and update your information online at your convenience.

Graduation is an accomplishment to be proud of, and we at Penn State World Campus look forward to celebrating with you and including you in our growing alumni community.