Summer Commencement Discontinuation

Georgia Tech Commencement

Summer 2014 graduates

Click here for specific information regarding fall communications and academic regalia. 

Discontinuation of Summer Commencement Policy

The summer ceremony, which has relatively few graduates compared to the fall and spring ceremonies, is being discontinued. The Institute will continue to award degrees for spring, summer and fall terms, but will only conduct spring and fall commencement exercises. Georgia Tech students who complete their degree requirements in the summer will be invited to participate in the Institute’s fall commencement ceremony. The change follows a thorough review of Tech’s commencement activities and reflects the Institute’s intention to be fiscally responsible in all phases of its operations. 

Active summer degree candidates who complete all the necessary requirements will graduate during the summer term and receive their diplomas six to eight weeks after the term’s completion. All summer graduates, regardless of which ceremony they participate in, will be listed in the respective fall commencement program, with a special symbol denoting their summer graduation status.

Fall Commencement Participation

All summer graduates will be invited to participate in the following fall commencement ceremony. Summer candidates will have the opportunity to provide their primary email address during the semester to receive information after graduation. Students wishing to participate in the fall ceremony are required to complete the summer registration form to ensure they receive timely messages from commencement organizers. Summer graduates will still be required to RSVP to the fall ceremony to confirm their participation.

Spring Commencement Participation

Due to space constraints, the number of summer degree candidates who can participate in spring Commencement will be limited. The Office of the Registrar will work with the Commencement office each spring to revise the spring early walk policy.  Students are asked to refer to the summer graduate information page at the start of each spring term for the most up to date information. Consultation with other offices on campus will occur as needed to ensure that all requests are given full and consistent consideration. 

Summer Commencement Discontinuation Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why is Georgia Tech’s summer commencement being discontinued? 

A: Three major factors contributed to the decision to discontinue the summer commencement ceremony. First, the number of students who participate in summer commencement (approx. 450 each year) is quite small in comparison to the number of students who participate in fall commencement (approx. 1,500) or spring commencement (approx. 2,300). Second, the cost of producing summer commencement (i.e. renting a venue, designing and printing programs, paying for security, etc.) is nearly the same as the cost of producing one of the larger ceremonies. By discontinuing Summer Commencement, we anticipate a cost savings up to $70,000 per year depending on the venue used. Third, summer graduates can be accommodated during the fall ceremony, allowing the university to be even more fiscally responsible.

Q: Will students still be able to graduate in the summer?

A: Yes. The Institute will continue to award degrees for spring, summer, and fall semesters. The only difference is that Georgia Tech will produce its commencement ceremony following spring and fall semesters.

Active summer degree candidates who complete all the necessary requirements to graduate during the summer term will receive their diplomas six to eight weeks after the term’s completion.

Q: If I graduate during the summer, when can I participate in a commencement ceremony?

A: Students who graduate in the summer will have the opportunity to walk in the fall commencement ceremony immediately following their graduation term (i.e. Summer 2013 graduates may participate in the Fall 2013 Commencement ceremony.) Those with less than two classes remaining in the summer term may apply to participate in the spring ceremony preceding summer.

Q: Will my name appear in the fall commencement program?

A: Yes. Summer graduates will be listed in the respective fall commencement program, with a special symbol denoting their summer graduation status.

Q: I am planning to graduate in summer. How will I get information about fall commencement after I leave school?

A: Summer candidates will have the opportunity to provide their primary email address during the semester to receive information on the fall ceremony. Students wishing to participate in the fall ceremony are required to complete the summer registration form to ensure they receive timely messages regarding the fall ceremony from commencement organizers. Summer graduates will still be required to RSVP to the fall ceremony to confirm their participation.

Please note Fall Commencement will be a ticketed event. Students must refer to the Commencement website, www.commencement.gatech.edu, to ensure they are aware of the respective ceremony’s ticketing process.

Q: I have some additional questions or feedback about the summer cancelation. Whom may I contact?

A: Please direct all questions or comments to comments@registrar.gatech.edu. A member of the Registrar’s Office will contact you shortly regarding your inquiry.