Commencement ceremonies are held at the conclusion of the spring and fall semesters. Spring commencements are held at all five GGBTS campuses; only the Northern California Campus has a fall ceremony. Golden Gate Seminary students may choose to participate in the ceremony at any GGBTS campus and must complete a graduation application before the end of the semester preceding their final semester (end of the fall semester for spring graduation; end of the spring semester for fall graduation).
Students must log into MyGGBTS to obtain more information on the graduation process. The Graduation Page under Student Tab contains forms, directions, deadlines, fees, regalia, and Frequently Asked Questions. Only current students are able to access the graduation information. If you are not a current student and wish to graduate, you must contact the admissions office.
When and where do I turn in the completed form?
Students must submit a complete application before the end of the semester preceding their final semester (end of the fall semester for spring graduation; end of the spring semester for fall graduation). Northern California students can turn the form into the Registrar’s Office. Regional campus students should submit the completed form to their respective regional campus administrative office. DMin students should submit the form to the DMin Office. Incomplete forms will not be processed and the student will be notified.
All students are required to take the Graduate Exit Survey as part of their graduation application. This requirement does not apply to CLD students.
What is the Graduate Exit Survey?
As part of the graduation application process, all graduate candidates for all degrees are required to provide the seminary with critical exit information and evaluation. This web-based private survey focuses on key demographic information, future ministry prospects, and opportunity for graduate reflection. Completion of the survey (roughly 18 to 25 minutes) provides you with the necessary confirmation code to complete your Graduation Application. Graduation applications must include this confirmation number.
What about the regalia (cap & gown) for graduation?
You will rent all the required regalia for graduation ceremony from LifeWay. You will need to order the appropriate regalia for your degree after receiving the graduation audit memo. All grads can pick up their caps and gowns at one of the respective regional campus administrative office or at LifeWay Campus bookstore the week of graduation. All caps, gowns and/or hoods will be returned after the ceremony. The rental fee is payable at the time of pick-up. Contact Lifeway at (415) 388-1133 for current rental prices.
Is there a fee for graduation?
A graduation fee will be posted to your account when you are approved for graduation (two weeks after late application due date – please see current academic calendar for exact date). This fee applies whether or not you plan to attend Commencement ceremony and it is in addition to the regalia rental fee (see above). The fee is due no later than the Wednesday before graduation. Consult the fees and expenses section of the current GGBTS catalog or contact the Business Office for the current fee.
When will I get information about the graduation ceremony?
The Student Services Office or your regional campus office will send you a graduation packet 6-8 weeks prior to the ceremony. This packet will contain information about rehearsal, graduate luncheon, pictures, etc. If you have not received this packet four weeks prior to the ceremony, please contact the Student Services Office or your regional campus office.
What if I can’t attend the graduation ceremony?
All students are expected to attend the commencement exercises. Permission to graduate in absentia is granted upon submission of REQUEST FOR EXCEPTION TO GRADUATION POLICY form and approved by the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Your diploma will be mailed to you no later than ten days after the date of graduation.
I still have a balance at the Business Office. When does this have to be paid?
All financial obligations to GGBTS must be paid no later than the Wednesday prior to graduation. This includes any library obligations (including fines, overdue books, and checked-out materials), tuition and fee charges and the graduation fee. No student will be permitted to participate in the graduation ceremony and/or receive a diploma if he/she has an outstanding balance at the Business Office.
What if I fail a class during my last semester or have to withdraw my name from the graduation list?
In rare cases, students who fail a class during their final semester may receive permission to graduate if they have made arrangements to re-take the failed classes during the next term.
If for any reason you cannot graduate at the end of the semester (other than failing a class) indicated on the application, you must notify to cancel and submit a new graduation application form for any subsequent graduation. There may be a cancellation fee of $20. Please check with the registrar’s office.
How will I know if I have completed my degree requirements?
The Registrar’s Office will complete a graduation check of your academic record at GGBTS. After this check is complete, you will be informed of the result via the email address you submit with your graduation application. This will be sent to you no later than the beginning of your graduation semester in order to give you the opportunity to enroll in any course that may be lacking. This only applies to students who submit their application by the deadline.
I have questions about graduation. Who do I ask?
• Questions about the grades, transcripts, diplomas, or graduation clearance can be directed to the Registrar’s Office at (415) 380-1640.
• Questions about the graduation ceremony can be directed to the Student Services Office at (415) 380-1446 or your regional campus administrative office.
I missed the application deadline. Can I still graduate?
Yes. You can still graduate; however, late applications are subject to a late fee and any change to the application once it has been accepted and processed (i.e. diploma ordered) by the Registrar’s office is also subject to a fee per change. No changes or submission is accepted within 8 weeks of graduation date. Consult the fees and expenses section of the current GGBTS catalog for the current fee.