Commencement A to Z

Academic Requirements for Arts & Sciences Graduation Eligibility

• A minimum 2.00 grade point average, both cumulatively and in general education courses and in the major/minor areas of study

• A minimum of 122 semester hours earned

• Successful completion of the General Education Requirements

• Successful completion of an approved major program of study

• No more than one grade of “D” in each of the required major/minor courses

• Completion of at least one half of the requirements of the major and minor programs of study at Presbyterian College

• At least 48 semester hours must be completed at Presbyterian College, including the last 24 credit hours

• Successful completion of Lecture and Performance CEP credits (as needed based on initial entrance into the college)

Anticipated Arts & Sciences Graduates

Anticipated graduates are candidates who meet all academic requirements within two courses (maximum 8 hours) and two CEP credits.

These students take their expected place in the commencement line-up with all other candidates and walk across the stage to shake hands with the president. A symbol in the commencement program identifies them as anticipated graduates. They will not receive a diploma, and neither departmental nor institutional honors are conferred at that time.

Candidates who wish to walk in anticipation of graduation must notify the registrar in writing before April 25, 2014.

Attendance

Graduation and the receipt of a diploma from Presbyterian College is an honor bestowed by the faculty, administration, and Board of Trustees. As such, PC requires Arts & Sciences candidates for May graduation to participate in both the baccalaureate worship service and the commencement ceremony unless the provost grants permission for absence.

PC grants degrees three times a year: in May, August, and December. As commencement takes place only in May, PC encourages candidates who receive their degrees in August or December to participate in the following year’s ceremony. Candidates who wish to participate in the ceremony must notify the registrar at least one month prior to commencement.

Alumni Parent Ceremony Participation

Alumni parent(s)/step-parent(s) of candidates are welcome to participate in awarding the diploma. Participants should indicate their interest by completing the Alumni Parent Participation Form and returning it to Ms. Leni Patterson, Director of Alumni Relations, by April 25, 2014. If you have questions, contact Ms. Leni Patterson at lpatters@presby.edu or 864-833-8284.

Alumni parent participants should gather at 9:15 am in Jacobs Hall the morning of graduation. The Alumni Office will send parents additional details prior to graduation.

College Honors and Honor Cords

During the commencement ceremony, PC recognizes members of the graduating class who have excelled academically. Eligibility requirements:

● Students who earn a certain cumulative GPA on all courses taken from PC and from other institutions receive Latin honors as follows:

3.75 or higher — summa cum laude
3.60-3.74 — magna cum laude
3.30-3.59 — cum laude

● Students entering Presbyterian College with transferred credit hours must meet the cumulative GPA standard for honors in all semester hours completed—that is, hours transferred in and hours earned at PC.

● The cumulative GPA of all Presbyterian College coursework must be of honors quality.

● Students must complete a minimum of 60 semester hours at PC to be eligible for honors.

PC’s honor societies provide gold honor cords to candidates, and the administration provides cords to those with Latin honors. And though departmental honors are quite noteworthy, we give no cords for these honors. Candidates with honors may wear a maximum of two cords during the ceremony.

Upon receiving the diploma from President Lilly, graduates advance to the bottom of the ramp where the Board of Trustees Chairman presents a gold cord signifying these academic accomplishments.

The commencement program lists academic honors as well as departmental honors.

Diplomas

May candidates, unless graduating in anticipation, receive the diploma during commencement. August and December graduates will have already received the diploma and do not need to bring it to the ceremony.
ADD LINK for First Pursuits Graduate survey, so that they can tell us what they are planning on doing after graduation.

THE PARTICULARS

Invitations/Announcements

Balfour provides Presbyterian College’s official commencement announcement. Go tohttp://www.balfour.com/College/ for pricing and ordering information.

“After Events”

The College is delighted to have members of our graduating class and their friends and family with us for this important time in their lives. Graduates who wish to celebrate privately after graduation with their classmates and families are asked to choose a gathering option as outlined in the Post Commencement Event guidelines CREATE LINK TO DOCUMENT. All events must conclude by 6 p.m. on May 10. All residence halls close at 6 p.m.

Attire

Candidates typically order academic regalia at the end of the junior year to use throughout their senior year.

All participants wear caps and gowns to both the baccalaureate service and the commencement ceremony. We suggest that candidates wear nice clothing underneath the gown for the reception following commencement. Candidates with honors may wear a maximum of two honor cords during the ceremony.

We recommend that guests wear business attire, while being aware that outdoor temperatures can vary widely. Women should wear comfortable low heels or flat shoes for walking across the lawns during commencement festivities.

Baccalaureate and Commencement Seating and Tickets

We will distribute three baccalaureate tickets and six commencement tickets to each student’s mailbox or mail them to home addresses (for August and December 2013 graduates and others as applicable) approximately two weeks before commencement.

Baccalaureate is on Friday, May 9, 2014, at 7 p.m. in Belk Auditorium. The auditorium will open around 6 p.m. Guests should take their seats by 6:30 pm. Ushers will release empty seats—most likely in the balcony—at approximately 6:45 p.m. to guests without tickets.

Commencement is on Saturday, May 10, 2014, at 10 a.m. outside on the West Plaza. Reserved seating for candidates is on one side of the processional aisle, while seating for faculty, college guests, and those with special needs is on the other. Plenty of open seating is available behind the two reserved areas, in the roadways, and on the lawns near surrounding buildings. Ushers begin distributing programs and assisting with seating at 9:00 am, though many guests arrive earlier. Tickets are needless unless inclement weather necessitates that we hold the ceremony in Templeton Gym. In that case, guests will need to use tickets and take their seats by 9:30 a.m. We will release empty seats at 9:45 a.m. to guests without tickets.

Buffet Dinner

The annual buffet dinner is on Friday, May 9, 2014, at 5 p.m. on the West Plaza, just prior to the Arts & Sciences baccalaureate service. Graduates are guests of the College. Their family and friends can register by April 25 for dinner through the LINK or return the RSVP card by April 25 to purchase tickets for the events. Commuting students can pick up tickets from the Campus Life Offices after May 7, 2014. School of Pharmacy graduates can pick up their tickets from Holly Cook. 

Commencement Practice

Commencement practice is on Friday, May 9, 2014, at 10:30 a.m. on the West Plaza (or Templeton Gymnasium if the weather is inclement). Students should arrive promptly and fill in the front seats to the right of the platform.

Lineup Procedures

Arts & Science baccalaureate lineup begins promptly at 6:30 p.m. on the sidewalk between the Smith Administration Building and Belk Auditorium. Students will not assemble in a particular order, but will be counted off to calculate an accurate number of rows needed for seating. In case of inclement weather, the lineup will convene on the left side of the Belk Auditorium loggia.

Commencement lineup begins promptly at 9:15 am on the sidewalk between Neville Hall and Georgia Hall. The precise ordering requires punctuality and attentiveness, which are vital to a successful lineup. In case of inclement weather, the lineup will convene in Mabry-Smith-Yonce Center.

Programs

Commencement programs are available on the morning of commencement. Programs list each graduate’s name, degree, hometown and honors.

Photography

GradImages sends a professional photographer to the commencement service to take each graduate’s photo with President Lilly. GradImages contacts candidates by April 15 with instructions for ordering photos.

There will not be a designated photo area, but guests will be allowed to take pictures from their seats during the ceremony.

 

LOGISTICS

First Aid

First aid services are available during the commencement ceremony. Anyone who needs assistance should contact a uniformed officer or security personnel.

Guests with Disabilities

Baccalaureate seating at Belk Auditorium for guests with special needs is available on the left front rows and in the back area behind the last row of seats. We recommend that guests with special needs use one of the three tickets that the College provides to candidates. A ticket allows access to these areas, while seating for guests with no ticket will likely remain only in the balcony. Guests can enter the auditorium through the bottom door on the side facing Edmunds Hall or through the loggia. Ushers are available to direct and assist.

Designated commencement seating for guests with special needs is also available. Ushers begin assisting guests with seating at 9 a.m., though guests may arrive earlier.

Handicapped parking is available in the lots behind Jacobs Hall and Harrington-Peachtree Academic Center. We require that vehicles parking in the designated handicapped areas display a disabled placard. Campus police assist guests by transporting them in a golf cart from the parking lot to the seating area.

For additional information on special accommodations, please contact Pearl Gaskin at ppgaskin@presby.edu or 864.833.8234.

Inclement Weather

Inclement weather may necessitate that we hold commencement in Templeton Gymnasium. We will determine the location by 8:30 a.m. and notify students through campus e-mail and the text message alert system.

  • Rain Plan for undergraduate students: Each graduate will receive six tickets for guests, which will be needed to enter Templeton Gym.  Guests will need to take their seats by 9:30 am.  Extra seats will be released at9:45 am to guests without tickets.
  • Rain Plan for graduate students: Guests will not need tickets to enter Belk Auditorium.

Parking

General parking is available in all parking lots on campus with the exception of designated lots. Handicapped parking is available in the lots behind Jacobs Hall and Harrington-Peachtree Academic Center. We require that vehicles parking in the designated handicapped areas display a disabled placard. Campus police assist disabled guests by transporting them in a golf cart from the parking lot to the seating area.

Restrooms

Restrooms are located in Belk Auditorium, Bailey Hall, Edmunds Hall, Harrington-Peachtree Academic Center, Jacobs Hall,  Smith Administrative Building and Springs Campus Center. Wheelchair accessible facilities are available in all buildings.