Graduation for a Graduate Student

One Year Before You Plan To Graduate

Confirm your plan of study and culminating experience: Contact your academic advisor or major professor to confirm your plan of study and ask about your culminating experience.

Your plan (or program) of study is your contract with your home university graduate school, your committee of faculty members and you. It outlines your path to graduation. It shows the courses you will take and when you will take them. Ask your academic advisor how to submit your plan of study. Before you graduate, your plan of study must be up-to-date with your home university graduate school.

The culminating experience pulls together all you learn in your program; each university has specific requirements. It might be a final exam, a master’s report, a thesis or a project. Your academic advisor or major professor oversees your culminating experience and provides you the details.

Share your plan: Notify your campus coordinator which semester you plan to graduate to ensure you complete all steps to graduation.

Get the checklist: Contact your graduate school to get your home university’s checklist for graduating students.

Six months before you plan to graduate

Confirm your culminating experience: Check in with your academic advisor about your culminating experience. Ask about submitting paperwork and due dates.

Explore Career Services: Research options at your home university’s career services. Find help with things like resume reviews, interview tips and job search resources. 

Apply for graduation: Ask when you need to apply for graduation through your home university graduate school.

Three Months Before You Plan To Graduate

Decide how to celebrate: If you plan to participate in on-campus commencement, purchase or rent your graduation regalia (cap and gown) and ask about on-campus graduation receptions. If you can’t make it to campus, some universities offer live streaming or virtual commencement.

Provide feedback: Complete the Great Plains IDEA program experience survey. The survey will be emailed to you during your final semester. Your feedback helps us improve our programs and the experiences of students.

Update your information: Update your contact information with your campus coordinator.

Join Great Plains IDEA on LinkedIn: We like to stay in touch with our alumni. We hope you’ll join us in the Great Plains IDEA LinkedIn group. Many of our programs have LinkedIn groups as well. Stay connected with faculty, fellow students and alumni through this professional networking site.