Important News Concerning August 2020 Commencement
Dear Class of 2020,
It is with deep regret that we announce the cancelation of the in-person commencement ceremonies scheduled for August 13-15. While this announcement is incredibly disappointing for all of us, we believe this is the best decision for everyone involved.
We have spent the past two months planning, reimagining and doing everything possible to host a safe event for you and your families. Despite our best plans, we’ve come to the conclusion that an event of this nature is inadvisable, no matter how well planned and organized. In all of our decisions, the welfare of the Samford community is our priority as the university prepares for the safe return of our students and employees for the fall semester. We feel the need to make this decision now so that you and your families can plan accordingly.
In place of the in-person ceremonies, the university will host virtual commencement ceremonies for each of our 10 academic schools. These events will involve all of our academic deans, the originally scheduled speakers and the traditional presentation of university-wide awards. We will provide you with a virtual invitation and program so that you may invite family and friends to join in your celebration. The university will soon announce the schedule for each ceremony and a recording will be available on our commencement website following each event. In addition, for students who ordered but have not received their regalia, we will soon mail your cap, gown and hood (for graduate students) so you can incorporate them into your celebration. While this is not the plan that we had hoped for, we are committed to doing all we can to create a meaningful and special celebration of your accomplishments. Please plan to join us for these virtual events.
The Class of 2020 will always be very special to us and this university. We regret the many ways that COVID-19 impacted your final semester and this important milestone in your lives, but we are immensely proud of your accomplishments and the extraordinary resiliency you have demonstrated. Once COVID-19 is behind us, we remain committed to hosting you on campus for a long-awaited in-person celebration. Until then, we look forward to honoring you with virtual commencement events.
Please be on the lookout for communication from the registrar’s office regarding the specifics of your individual ceremony.
J. Michael Hardin, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Chad M. Carson, Interim Dean, Brock School of Business
Michael Crouch, Dean, McWhorter School of Pharmacy
Tim Hall, Dean, Howard College of Arts and Sciences
Joseph Hopkins, Dean, School of the Arts
Alan P. Jung, Dean, School of Health Professions
Melissa Lumpkin, Interim Dean, School of Public Health
Jane S. Martin, Interim Dean, Ida Moffett School of Nursing
Anna McEwan, Dean, Orlean Beeson School of Education
Henry C. Strickland, Dean, Cumberland School of Law
Douglas A. Sweeny, Dean, Beeson Divinity School
Mandy Hilsmier, Chair of the Faculty Senate
All the best,
J. Michael Hardin, Ph.D.
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Professor of Quantitative Analysis and Biostatistics
Application for Degree
All students must complete the above form. Your application determines how your name will appear on your diploma, your diploma mailing address, and whether or not your name appears on the commencement program. Students should check their Samford email accounts for communications from our office.
Graduate List for Spring & Summer 2020
The list of Spring & Summer 2020 Graduation Candidates is now available for review.
These lists contain the names of Spring 2020 graduates & Summer 2020 graduation candidates. Please note that the appearance of a name on this list does NOT guarantee that the student will complete requirements. Degrees will only be posted for students meeting all graduation requirements after term grades are in and all end of term processing is complete. Contact the Office of the Registrar with questions.
Most recent file date: June 8, 2020
My name doesn't appear on the graduation list. Why not?
The list of graduation candidates is posted periodically throughout the semester and represents the list of students for whom Office of the Registrar has received a completed application for undergraduate degree (if an undergraduate student) and a signed degree audit/grad check from the student’s advisor. Students will not appear on the list of graduation candidates for one or more of the following reasons:
- They have not completed an application for undergraduate degree. (Does not apply to graduate students.)
- They lack substitutions, waivers, degree audits/grad checks
- They have Incomplete grades from prior terms. (Incomplete grades affect inclusion on the list only in certain circumstances.)
- They need more than 20 convocation credits (Does not apply to graduate or Evening College students.)
- They have been approved to walk early in the current commencement ceremony, but are not scheduled to complete their degree until the following semester.
Why do I need to apply for graduation?
You must apply for graduation in order to generate a degree audit/grad check from your advisor. He/she will review your coursework against either a department check list or a degree audit generated by Office of the Registrar. After the review, and if the student is on track to graduate that semester, the advisor will send the signed degree audit/grad check to the Office of the Registrar. See below for application deadlines.
The application for graduation also collects valuable information, such as:
- The name you want printed on your diploma
- Your hometown and state (or country) for the commencement program and newspaper notification
- An indication to us whether you plan to pick up your diploma or if you want us to mail it to you (and to which address), when it’s ready
- Confirmation of the degree(s), major(s) (and concentration, if applicable), and minor(s) that you are pursuing
What are the deadlines to apply for graduation?
See the table below for application deadlines. Deadlines will be adjusted if they fall on a weekend or holiday.
|Anticipated Graduation Term||Deadline|
|Anticipated Graduation Term||Deadline|
Why are the deadlines for graduation so far in advance of the actual graduation term?
Since the application for graduation generates the request for a degree audit/grad check, the early deadline is needed for several reasons:
- It allows your advisor time to review your degree audit and submit his/her final evaluation.
- Once the review is complete and you’ve received a graduation evaluation from the Office of the Registrar informing you of your status (hopefully before the start of the semester in which you plan to graduate), it allows you time to adjust your class schedule, if necessary, so you can complete all graduation requirements on time.
If the graduation application is filed after the deadline, it may result in the degree audit/grad check and subsequent graduation evaluation letter being processed late, which may not allow you time to adjust your class schedule in that final semester to address any outstanding degree requirement issues. If you have submitted your graduation application by the posted deadline, but have not received an evaluation of your status (sent by e-mail) listing the requirements needed to complete your degree before the start of your final semester, please check with your advisor and/or Office of the Registrar to determine the status of your degree audit/grad check.
How do I get a degree audit/grad check?
If you are an undergraduate student, completion of the application for graduation will generate a request to your advisor for a degree check/grad check. You can certainly contact your advisor directly, but the application is the preferred starting point.
If you are a graduate student, the department/graduate school representative will submit a list of graduation candidates to the Office of the Registrar.
How often will the list be updated on the web? Will it be posted again after the ceremony?
The list of graduation candidates will be updated regularly throughout the semester. Due to the dynamic nature of the list (names added or deleted, details revised daily), it cannot be updated every day or every week. We attempt to post a more complete list approximately two weeks before commencement, but the list will not be updated again after the ceremony.
What color tassel do I wear? When do I get it?
You can pick up your tassel when you pick up your cap and gown. Otherwise, tassels are available from the Office of the Registrar, Samford Hall 214.
|Arts & Sciences||Gold|
|Arts, School of the||Brown|
|Professional Studies (Evening Program)||Black|
|Health Professions||Kelly Green|
Do I get to wear a cord? If not, why? If so, where do I get the cord?
Cords are for students in university-approved honors programs (not for students who earn Latin honors), as listed below. Cords are distributed by the honor society/organization. Students bring the cords with them to commencement to wear with their caps and gowns. FYI: Cords, sashes, and emblems associated with social or leadership fraternities and sororities may not be worn at commencement.
Samford University-Approved Honors Organizations
Alpha Epsilon Delta (Pre-Health)
Alpha Lambda Delta (Freshmen)
Dobro Slovo (Slavic Studies)
Omicron Delta Kappa (Leadership and Service)
Order of Omega (Greek Leadership and Service)
Phi Kappa Phi (Academic Achievement)
Howard College of Arts and Sciences
Biology—Beta Beta Beta
Classics—Eta Sigma Phi
Communication Studies—Lambda Pi Eta
English—Sigma Tau Delta
Geography—Gamma Theta Upsilon
History—Phi Alpha Theta
Journalism/Mass Communication—Kappa Tau Alpha
Mathematics—Pi Mu Epsilon
Philosophy—Phi Sigma Tau
Political Science—Pi Sigma Alpha
Religion—Theta Alpha Kappa
Sociology—Alpha Kappa Delta
World Languages and Cultures—
Pi Delta Phi (French)
Delta Phi Alpha (German)
Sigma Delta Pi (Spanish)
School of the Arts
Music—Delta Omicron; Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia
Theatre—Alpha Psi Omega
Brock School of Business
Business (General)—Beta Gamma Sigma
Accounting, Finance—Beta Alpha Psi
Economics—Omicron Delta Epsilon
Orlean Beeson School of Education
Human Development and Family Life Education—Kappa Omicron Nu
Teacher Education—Kappa Delta Pi
Professional Studies—Alpha Sigma Lambda
Ida Moffett School of Nursing
Sigma Theta Tau
McWhorter School of Pharmacy
Phi Lamda Sigma
Omicron Delta Kappa
How do I arrange for graduation announcements, caps, and gowns?
The Office of the Registrar holds a graduation fair (Bulldog Blastoff!) approximately two months before commencement at which time students can make arrangements for these items. If you happen to miss the fair, there is a final deadline for getting measured for a cap and gown (approximately two to three weeks before commencement). Announcements can be ordered through Signature Announcements.
How many guests can I invite to the commencement ceremony? How do I get tickets?
We do not have unlimited seating for guests, but you may invite a reasonable number of guests. Seating is first-come, first-served. We do not issue tickets for the ceremony.
Why do I need to let the registrar know I won’t be attending the commencement ceremony?
Attendance at commencement is required unless there are mitigating circumstances that would lead to approval to be graduated in absentia.
Will my major and minor be printed on my diploma?
No, only your degree and any honors (cum laude, magna cum laude, and summa cum laude) you may have earned will appear on your diploma. Your major(s) and minor(s), however, will appear on your official Samford transcript.
How are honors (Latin honors) determined?
Latin honors are awarded on the basis of all academic work taken at Samford University. Students who earn at least 70 credits at Samford and a grade point average (calculated on all work done at Samford University) of 3.500 through 3.749 are graduated cum laude; of 3.750 through 3.899 are graduated magna cum laude; and of 3.900 through 4.000 are graduated summa cum laude. Please note, however, that Latin honors cannot be calculated in time for the actual ceremony since grades are not due until the week following commencement. If Latin honors are called out for you at the ceremony, they will be an estimate of your final GPA.
|Latin Honors||GPA Range|
|magna cum laude||3.750–3.899|
|summa cum laude||3.900–4.000|
How can I make sure my name is correct on my diploma? What about my hometown on the commencement program?
Students have the opportunity to provide accurate name and hometown information when they complete the application for undergraduate degree.
All graduation candidates are encouraged to check their Samford e-mail accounts throughout the term for notes from the Office of the Registrar regarding graduation information.
I know the semester isn't over yet, but I need a letter (for insurance purposes, loan, etc.) stating that I’m on track to complete my degree this term. How can I get such a letter?
Your academic dean may be able to provide such a letter.
I’ve discovered a mistake on my printed diploma (name misspelled, degree incorrect, etc.). How can I get that fixed?
Please contact Office of the Registrar at 205-726-2911 or by e-mail regarding the error. Diplomas printed in error will be replaced at no charge, but students need to allow two months for the replacement diploma to be ready.
I need an additional copy of my diploma or my original diploma was damaged or lost. How can I get a duplicate or replacement diploma?
For a $50 charge (check or money order), duplicate or replacement diplomas can be requested. Please allow at least one month for the replacement diploma to be ready.
I need a transcript showing my degree. How soon after commencement can I get a copy with the degree?
Degrees will be posted the week following commencement. You can make a request for a transcript at any time (online through the Portal, in person, or by mail)—indicating that it should wait for degree posting—but realize that it won’t be printed until late in the week following commencement. For December commencement, the Office of the Registrar makes every effort to mail transcripts with final grades and degrees prior to the Christmas break, but please keep in mind the volume of mail at that time of year (especially if you are trying to meet an early January deadline).
I didn't get my diploma at the ceremony. When/how will I get my diploma?
Since grades are not due until the week following commencement, actual diplomas are no longer given out at the commencement ceremony. You will be contacted via email when your diploma is ready to be shipped.
|You Graduated in...||Your Diploma will be Ready…|
I filled out a card for a photo company at the ceremony? What’s that about?
The photo company will be contacting you with proofs of your graduation pictures.
Directions and Maps
Seating in any Samford commencement ceremonies are on a first-come, first-served basis. Each venue will be opened approximately one hour before the commencement proceedings.