Frequently Asked Questions About Graduation

Do I have to submit or notify the Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration to be reviewed for graduation?

No.  Each semester the Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration identifies the students who may be completing an Associate degree, program of study, and/or certificate. However, if you have not received the Notice of Potential Graduation Eligibility email to your Bucks email account by mid-term, please contact Gladys York, Graduation Specialist, at gladys.york@bucks.edu

When will I be considered a potential graduate?

Any student, who will have completed 60 or more credits by the end of a specific semester, who has not yet received an Associate Degree, is considered a potential graduate.

Once I complete 60 credits, does this in itself entitle me to graduate?

No.  You must fulfill all of the requirements for your Program of Study, have a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or higher, and have completed at least 30 credits here at Bucks.

How will I know if I’m considered a potential graduate for the semester?

You will receive a Notice of Potential Graduation Eligibility email sent to your Bucks email account on or before mid-term (fall and spring terms).

What happens if I think I’m going to graduate, but I don’t get the letter?

Contact Gladys York, Graduation Specialist, in the Office of Records.  Phone: 215-968-8118 or e-mail: gladys.york@bucks.edu

If I get the letter, does this mean I’ll graduate?

No, we’ll review your record to see if you have completed all of the requirements for your particular Program of Study, including residency (30 credits at Bucks) and c.g.p.a. requirements. 

Will I be notified if I am not graduating?

Yes.  You will receive a letter informing you that your evaluation was reviewed and that we found you do not meet the requirements for graduation.

How will I know if I do meet all requirements for graduation?

You can review your Academic Evaluation in WebAdvisor. Click on Academic Planning and then Program Evaluation.  After you review your Academic Evaluation, if you have any questions, please contact your academic advisor. 

What if I am completing a Certificate Program?

The Office of Records also identifies every student enrolled in a Certificate Program and reviews their records for potential program completion. However, many students complete a Certificate Program while they are actively enrolled in an Associate Degree Program of Study, or complete two Certificate Programs at once.  In this case, the student should contact Gladys York, Graduation Specialist, to ensure that your Certificate(s) is awarded correctly and in a timely manner. Graduation Specialist Gladys York can be contacted at 215-968-8118 or by e-mail at gladys.york@bucks.edu.

What if I already have an Associate Degree and am completing a second Associate Degree Program?

Students may complete a second associate degree program. Please review and follow the guidelines below for completion of a second degree. PLEASE NOTE: Failure to inform the Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration of your intent to graduate with a second degree may delay graduation from, and granting of, a second degree.

Guidelines for students to earn more than one associate degree:

  • Students may earn only one degree per program/major. For example, a student who graduated from and earned an AA degree in Biology cannot receive an AS degree in Biology.
  • A second associate degree will require a minimum of 15 credits different from and in addition to those needed to satisfy the first associate degree.
  • The second associate degree may use common credits.  For example, both Liberal Arts: General Emphasis and Communication Studies programs require COMM110 and COMP110.  If a student earned the Liberal Arts: General Emphasis degree and is now in the Communication Studies degree program, Communication Studies will use the previously completed COMM110 and COMP110. 
  • Course substitutions in the new/second degree program that are requested in order to allow use of previously completed credits will be allowed only in unusual circumstances, and only with special permission of the Department Dean and the Associate Provost.
  • Students should not alternate back and forth between degree programs/majors.  Students should take courses leading to one degree at a time.
  • Students receiving financial aid assistance and pursuing a second degree should speak to the Financial Aid Office to understand the ramifications/conditions of satisfactory academic progress and also time, amount limits to grant and loan programs that could affect your eligibility if seeking a second degree.

Students must self-identify as seeking a second degree. Students must notify the Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration in the beginning of the term they intend to graduate with a second degree. The Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration will review program completion and notify the student of eligibility to graduate with a second degree.

Is there a graduation ceremony every semester?

No. There are three (3) graduation dates each year, but only one (1) graduation ceremony.  The graduation ceremony is held in May. Students are reviewed for graduation eligibility and credentials are posted on the following dates:

January 31 (Fall and Intersession graduates)
May 31 (Spring graduates)
August 31 (Summer graduates)

Do I have to attend the Graduation Ceremony?

No

Who can attend the graduation ceremony?

  • Any student who graduated the previous August or January
  • Any student who anticipates graduation this May
  • Any student who will complete program requirements during the upcoming summer sessions

What do I have to do if I want to attend the graduation ceremony?

Order your cap and gown. This will identify you as a student who will be participating in the graduation ceremony. To order your cap and gown, click here

Note: Bucks graduates wear royal blue caps and gowns with a black hood. If you intend to participate in the graduation ceremony, but will be using the royal blue cap and gown of a family member who already graduated from Bucks, please notify Gladys York, Graduation Specialist at Gladys.York@bucks.edu or 215-968-8118.

Where do I place my order for my diploma?

The Diploma Order Form  is available on the Bucks website or in the Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration. A ‌Diploma Order Form must be filled out by the student and submitted no later than Friday, November 11, 2016 (for Fall and Wintersession grads) and by Friday, April 7, 2017 (for Spring grads). Any diploma order form received after the due date may not be available by graduation.

Completed diploma order forms can be emailed to Gladys.York@bucks.edu, faxed to 215-968-8110, dropped off in the Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration (Linksz Pavilion, Newtown Campus) or mailed to Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration, Bucks County Community College, 275 Swamp Road, Newtown, PA 18940. 

Bucks County Community College diploma frames can be purchased from the campus bookstore

Where do I place my order for a cap and gown?

Place your cap and gown order online at www.herffjones.com/college/bucksYou can choose to pick up your cap and gown up at the Lower Bucks, Newtown, or Upper Bucks campus. Please be sure to fill in all of the requested information – especially your height and weight data since this is how Herff Jones determines the correct size gown to send you. All orders for the May 18, 2017, graduation ceremony must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, April 2, 2017. The website to order cap and gown will close on Monday, April 3, 2017. 

Students can also place their diploma and cap and gown orders in-person at the following locations:

  • Newtown Campus, Office of Admissions, Records, and Registration (Monday-Friday 8:30am-4:30pm and Wednesday evenings until 7:00pm)
  • Lower Bucks Campus, Front Desk (Monday-Thursday, 8:30am-7:00pm and Friday, 8:30am-4:00pm)
  • Upper Bucks Campus, North Desk (Monday-Thursday, 8:00am-8:00pm and Friday 8:00am-4:00pm)

Note: there are no evening hours between semesters or during breaks

Do I automatically get a diploma?

No. Students must order a diploma to receive a diploma. 

What is the fee for a diploma and a cap and gown?

There is a diploma fee of $10.00 (certificates are $5.00). No payment is collected when you place your order. We will notify Student Accounts that an order has been placed and they will post the charges to your student account. You may then make you payment through Bucks Self-Service, in person at Student Accounts, or by mailing your check or money order to BCCC Student Accounts, 275 Swamp Road, Newtown, PA 18940.  Please make sure that you put your name and ID number on your check or money order.

There is a cap and gown fee of $10.00. Students ordering on-line through Herff Jones must submit credit card payment at the time of the order. Students ordering their cap and gown in person at one of our campuses will not need to make payment when the order is placed. We will notify Student Accounts that an order has been placed and they will post the charges to your account. You may then make you payment through Bucks Self-Service, in person at Student Accounts, or by mailing your check or money order to BCCC Student Accounts, 275 Swamp Road, Newtown, PA 18940.  Please make sure that you put your name and ID number on your check or money order.

Where do I pick up my cap and gown?

When ordering your cap and gown, you must indicate where you want to pick up your cap and gown. Students must go to their chosen destination to pick up their cap and gown on Monday, May 8 or Tuesday, May 9:

  • Newtown Campus, Office of Admissions, Records and Registration, Linksz Pavilion; 9:00am-8:00pm
  • Lower Bucks Campus, Front Desk; 7:30am-7:00pm 
  • Upper Bucks Campus, North Building Front Desk; 7:30am-10:00pm

When is the graduation ceremony? Where is it held? What time? How many guests can I invite?

The graduation ceremony will be held on Thursday, May 18, 2017, at Bucks County Community College, Newtown Campus.  The ceremony is set to begin at 6:00pm and will be held in the gymnasium. For detailed information visit the Commencement Ceremony website.

Where do the graduates line up?

Graduates will line up in the Rollins Student Center cafeteria area, beginning at 5:00pm.  This is 1 hour prior to the start of the ceremony.

I forgot my tickets the night of the Commencement Ceremony, what do I do?

Go directly to the Rollins Student Center dining area and ask a staff member for assistance. 

Will I receive my diploma on the night of the graduation ceremony?

No. You will receive only the blue folder which holds your diploma.  We have found that this is the best way to accommodate all students who wish to participate in the ceremony. The Commencement Ceremony is held shortly after the end of final exams. In many cases, all final grades have not been posted by the date of the Commencement Ceremony. It takes approximately two weeks to complete all processes and review records for actual graduation eligibility. Additionally, some students graduated during the previous semester and already received their diploma and other students will not actually graduate until summer courses are completed. 

When your graduation has been posted, you will receive a congratulations letter and an unofficial copy of your transcript.  If you ordered a diploma, you will receive a second letter informing you that your diploma is ready to be picked up.

How long is the graduation ceremony?

The ceremony is about 1 and 1/2 hours in length. 

What should I wear with my cap and gown?

Your cap and gown can hold heat, especially on a warm day. We suggest you dress appropriately on such an important day with lots of family and friends taking photos and seeing you shine. A good guide would be a minimum of  business casual attire with the temperature in consideration. Typical attire for men is a collared shirt, tie, and khaki or dress pants. Typical attire for women is a sun dress, blouse and skirt or dress pants.

Where do I park for the graduation ceremony?

Officers will be stationed along Linden Lane, the main college road, directing students and visitors to parking lots.  Parking is available in student lots A, B, C, D and E. Parking for persons with disabilities is available in various areas and lots around campus. Please see the Campus Map.

What is the policy on entry and re-entry for guests in the gymnasium?

Only ticketed persons may enter the gymnasium. Entry is possible only through the lobby doors. Any person exiting the gymnasium must be in possession of their ticket stub, and must re-enter through the lobby doors and show their ticket.

What if the gymnasium is full?

Due to fire safety regulations, a limited number of seats are available in the gymnasium for both graduates and their guests. Once the seating capacity is reached, guests will be directed to the remote telecast site located in the Linksz Pavilion, which is in front of the gymnasium lobby. 

Where are the restrooms?

Restrooms are available in the gymnasium lobby. Additional men's and women's restrooms are available on the second floor of the gymnasium, which is accessible from the lobby. Volunteers are located at each gymnasium entrance to assist you.

Who can I contact in an emergency or if I am in need of assistance?

Security and safety personnel will be on hand to provide direction, assist persons with disabilities, and provide emergency and medical assistance if needed. You can contact Bucks County Community College Security and Safety at 215-968-8395 or on campus extension 8395. Emergency call boxes (blue lights) are located in each parking lot and can be activated if you are in need of assistance. 

Does the college have lodging available for family and friends?

The college does not have on-campus lodging, but the Hampton Inn and Suites Newtown is close to campus. The Hampton Inn and Suites Newtown is offering any out of town family/friends of the Bucks County Community College graduates a special rate which includes breakfast. Contact: 215-860-1700. Hampton Inn and Suites Newtown is located at 1000 Stony Hill Rd., Yardley, PA 19067.

 

What do I have to do if I want to take more courses at Bucks after I graduate?

If you plan to register for the next term, simply register during the current student registration period or any of the registration opportunities listed on the website each semester. After graduation has been posted, you will have to select a new program of study. You may complete a change of program, or email Gladys.York@bucks.edu indicating your new program of study.