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Home > Current Students > Graduation > Commencement

Commencement

Congratulations on achieving this milestone! On Sunday, May 17, 2015, NOVA will hold two Commencements, both taking place at George Mason University’s Patriot Center. Please note, the two separate ceremonies are required because of the significant growth in the number of graduates and the limited capacity of the Patriot Center.

General Commencement

A ticketed event that will begin at 2:00 p.m.

General Commencement is the commencement ceremony for all NOVA graduates other than those obtaining degrees or certificates for programs offered through the Medical Education Campus (Nursing and the Allied Health degree programs and all associated certificate programs). Graduates should arrive at the Patriot Center no later than 1:00 p.m.

Health Professions Commencement

A non-ticketed event for graduates of the Medical Education Campus that will begin at 7:00 p.m.

Health Professions Commencement is the commencement ceremony for programs offered through the Medical Education Campus (Nursing and the Allied Health degree programs and all associated certificate programs). Graduates should arrive at the Patriot Center no later than 6:00 p.m.

Tickets for General Commencement

TICKETS WILL BE AVAILABLE STARTING ON MONDAY, APRIL 6 at the Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas and Woodbridge Campuses. PLEASE BRING YOUR STUDENT ID.

Alexandria Campus
Bisdorf Room 195 (Student Services Conference Room)
Monday - Thursday: Noon to 7:00 p.m.; Friday: Noon to 4:00 p.m.
Contacts: Diana Cifuentes, Donnell Smith or Brenda Robinson-Baptist  

Annandale Campus
CA Building: Room 315-Dean of Students Office
Monday - Friday: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Contacts: Staci Grogan, Muhammad Basit or Claudia Chirinos

Loudoun Campus
Office of the Provost
LR Building, Room 252
Monday - Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Contacts: Debbie Melko and Liz Hamrick

Manassas Campus
Howsmon Hall, Room 313
Monday - Friday: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Contacts: Dr. Mark Kidd or Marrium Saleem

Woodbridge Campus
Seefeldt Building: Information Desk
Monday - Thursday: 8:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.; Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Contacts: Karen Todd or Lando Lowe

  • Tickets are for family and friends of the graduate. The graduate does not need a ticket for himself/herself. The tickets are for open seating in the stands.
  • If you do not need all six of your tickets, please share your extra tickets with fellow graduates who may need more.
  • The deadline for regular distribution of tickets at the campuses will be Wednesday, May 13 at 5:00 p.m.

If there are any tickets remaining, these tickets will be available on Saturday, May 16 at the Annandale Bookstore beginning at 11:00 a.m. These tickets will be distributed on a first come, first served basis.

Cap and Gown

All graduates must wear a cap and gown to participate in the ceremony. Caps and gowns are available for purchase in each campus bookstore. A limited number will be available on the day of Commencement at the Patriot Center.

  • On Sunday, May 17, caps and gowns will be available at the South Entrance of the Patriot Center.
  • Leave purses and other valuables with family or friends because there is no place to secure these items during the ceremony.

Special Needs

Graduates who need special physical arrangements should call 703.323.3753 no later than Wednesday, May 13.

Graduating With Honors

Students with the following cumulative grade point averages will graduate with honors:

  • 3.20 - 3.49: Cum Laude (with Honor)
  • 3.50 - 3.79: Magna Cum Laude (with High Honor)
  • 3.80 - 4.00: Summa Cum Laude (with Highest Honor)

Please note per page 60 of the NOVA College Catalog, Graduation Honors, students attending NOVA for a minimum of 30 credit hours in degree programs are eligible for graduation honors. Those attending NOVA for a minimum of 50% of the credit hours in their certificate program are eligible for graduation honors.

Details for Commencement Day

Plan to arrive no later than one hour before the start of your Commencement. Traffic near the Patriot Center will be congested; please allow extra travel time so you don’t miss this important event. Attendants will guide you to free parking. Handicap and special assistance parking is available at the South Entrance for you and your guests.

  • For the General Commencement, faculty marshals will help graduates line up for the academic procession in Lot A. In case of rain, graduates should report to the Patriot Center’s lower level entrance where faculty marshals will assist them.
  • For the Health Professions Commencement, faculty marshals will help graduates line up for the academic procession in Lot A. In case of rain, graduates should report to the Patriot Center’s lower level entrance where faculty marshals will assist them.
  • To participate in Commencement, you must be dressed in the appropriate cap and gown. Leave purses and other valuables with family or friends because there is no place for you to secure these items.

Beverages, food (including gum) and smoking are not permitted in the academic procession or in the Patriot Center. Graduates violating this policy will not be allowed to participate in Commencement exercises.