Frequently Asked Questions


How is UMBC celebrating commencement?

Winter 2022 Commencement will include two ceremonies:

  • Wednesday, December 21, 10 a.m.: Graduate Commencement;
  • Thursday, December 22, 10 a.m.: Undergraduate Commencement

Graduates who have been cleared to graduate by either the Graduate School or the Registrar’s office will receive an email with information on how to register for the ceremony. The registration deadline is November 27, 2022. If you missed the deadline, please email commencement@umbc.edu ASAP to see if we can still accommodate you.

Cap and Gown purchases are handled by a third party company, Herff Jones.

Regalia IS required for graduates to participate in the in-person ceremony.

Regalia is NOT required for the online ceremony. However, if students wish to order regalia for photos, they may do so.

Undergraduates may purchase caps and gowns through the bookstore. Caps and gowns will be shipped to the address you provide when ordering.

Ph.D. and Master’s degrees candidates may choose to rent regalia through the bookstore. If rented, the regalia will be mailed with a return shipping label. You are responsible for the return of the regalia, and you will need to rent regalia again if you choose to participate in a future in-person ceremony.

On the morning of the ceremony, the link to view it will be on the home page. Please share with your family and friends.

If you are a graduate participating in one of the three ceremonies and are using crutches, a wheelchair, or are otherwise unable to use stairs, please email commencement@umbc.edu letting us know what ceremony you are participating in and what your major is and we will work with you to find the best solution for your needs.

There will be a staffed table inside the lobby of the Chesapeake Employers Insurance Arena for guests needing accessible seating or assistance to find seating that fits their needs. Learn more here.

No. Graduates are not required to participate in-person or virtually.

Students will earn their degrees and be able to graduate this semester, consistent with academic standards.

All undergraduate students who have graduated, per the final review process conducted by the Registrar’s Office, will receive their undergraduate diploma in the mail. Undergraduate diplomas are not distributed at the commencement ceremony. Students can expect to receive their diploma at their mailing address four to six weeks after their degree has been conferred. For additional information regarding your undergraduate diploma, please visit the Registrar’s Office website.

All graduate students who have completed degree requirements and been approved for graduation by the Graduate School will receive their graduate diploma in the mail. Students can expect to receive their diploma at the mailing address given on their supplemental application for graduation.

Honors are based upon coursework taken over the duration of a student’s entire undergraduate academic career at UMBC. To be eligible for Commencement Honors, students must have earned at least 60 graded credits at UMBC (excluding Pass/Fail and Audit grades) with a GPA as follows:

  • Summa cum laude (“With highest honor”): Students graduating with a GPA between 3.95 and 4.0.
  • Magna cum laude (“With high honor”): Students graduating with a GPA between 3.75 and 3.9499.
  • Cum laude (“With honor”): Students graduating with a GPA between 3.5 and 3.7499.

Current graduates that are participating in the commencement ceremony in-person, and have purchased their regalia, will be able to pick up their honors cords and stoles at the Bookstore.

While students may be provisionally recognized with Honors at the time of the commencement ceremony and in the commencement program (refer to Eligibility for Undergraduate Commencement Participation), the official determination of Honors occurs after the commencement ceremony, once final semester grades have been submitted and calculated. The diploma of the University and the final official transcript are the only documents that officially award Honors at the time the degree is conferred by the University.

For additional information regarding Commencement and University Honors, please visit the Registrar’s Office website.