The Do’s and Dont’s of the Graduation Process

Are you graduating this year but have no clue on what the process requires? It’s alright. We’ve got you covered. Graduating can be a stressful event with many factors to consider before the big day. Knowing where to start is key to completing this monumental step in your education. This guide will be most helpful to students graduating from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras campus, but the basics can apply to anyone.

  1. 1. DO request an academic evaluation.

    This may seem like a silly thing to mention, but it’s the first and most important step. Before you even think about graduating, you need to get your ducks in a row. You don’t want to end up paying the graduation fee only to find out you’re missing a few credits you didn’t know about. Visit your counselor, or schedule a meeting with whoever is in charge of your program and ask for an academic evaluation. This will let you know which classes you’ve completed and which ones you’re missing. It will also let you plan out your semester accordingly.

  2. 2. DON’T leave it until the last minute.

    You should schedule an academic evaluation one semester BEFORE the semester you graduate. You won't be allowed to graduate unless you do. For example, if you’re expected to graduate during the 2018 Spring semester (from January to May) of 201, you need to request an evaluation during the Fall 2018 semester (from August to December). This will ensure you have enough time to plan ahead. Remember that most student service offices set specific dates to request academic evaluations, and they have limited spaces available. Plan ahead!

  3. 3. DO pay your graduation fee on time.

    Once you’re sure you have all the credits required to graduate, you need to pay the graduation fee. Sadly, unlike the UPRM, you can't pay the semester before you graduate. At the University of Puerto Rico Rio Piedras Campus, you need to pay at the beginning of your last semester. You usually have about a month since the start date to get this done! The fee for graduating is currently at $80 to graduate from your Bachelor's Degree. It's a lot, I know. After filling out the document and paying, all that's left to do is wait. The graduation confirmation and details are usually mailed during the last month of the semester.

  4. 4. DON’T expect your last semester to be a breeze.

    A lot of people venture into their final semester thinking it will be the easiest one. Don’t be fooled. This should be a time to give it your all since it’s the last chance you get to improve your GPA. Work hard. The results will be worth it. This is also a good time to think about what you’ll do after graduation. Apply to grad school and land your first professional job. You'll likely be worried about friends and making plans to hang out with everyone you know you wont see again.

  5. 5. DO enjoy your last semester.

    Is there something you never got to do during your college years? Now is the time to finally do it. Some people hit all the food joints, while others attend every party or college event. This is a nice time to appreciate all the good times you had, while also contemplating your future. Explore your university/college one more time as a student.

Hopefully, these tips will make the graduation process a bit less stressful. Remember to keep yourself informed about all the updates pertaining to due dates and to procedures. Ask your peers, professors, and counselors. They’re sure to give you extra valuable info. Happy graduation!