Walden graduates are invited to celebrate their academic achievement by attending commencement.
After successfully applying to graduate and receiving confirmation of their degree conferral from the graduation team, newly minted Walden graduates are eligible to attend an in-person commencement ceremony. The Walden community gathers in person twice a year, in winter and summer, to recognize candidates’ completion of doctoral, master's, specialist, and baccalaureate degrees.
Graduation and commencement are two separate activities.
To receive an invitation to register to attend a commencement ceremony, graduates must successfully apply for graduation and receive confirmation of their degree conferral from the graduation team. Then, when registration for commencement opens, more details and a link to register will be sent to all eligible graduates via email. Any specific details about the ceremonies will be linked on this web page once they are available to share.
Scroll down for more information on commencement dates, eligibility, participation details, and more.
Watch the Winter 2024 Ceremonies
We look forward to celebrating with you in the future! Below is a list of our future commencement dates and locations. Please refer to your degree conferral confirmation email from the graduation team to understand which commencement you are first eligible to attend.
|information & registration details
|Jan. 18-20, 2024
|San Antonio, TX
|Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center
|July 18-20, 2024
|Orange County Convention Center
|July 10-12, 2025
|Orange County Convention Center
Please note that graduates usually only participate in one ceremony on one day of the entire commencement weekend. Ceremony schedules and participation details vary for each commencement and are published online as soon as they are available to share.
There are two major steps a graduating student must take to be eligible to receive an invitation to register to attend commencement.
- Submit an application to graduate.
- When you are registered for your final course(s) and within your final academic term, apply to graduate via your myWalden portal.
- The graduation application process is academic activity managed by the University Registrar and not the University Events Team. Therefore, any questions about this process or the status of your application should be directed to your Student Success Advisor or the graduation team.
- Receive confirmation of your degree conferral (graduation).
- Once your graduation application has been approved, you will receive an email from the graduation team confirming you have fulfilled all your requirements and your degree has been awarded.
- This prompts the production and deployment of your diploma, which usually takes 6–8 weeks to be delivered.
- This email from the graduation team will also contain information about the commencement you are first eligible to attend.
The degree conferral date determines which commencement ceremony each graduate will be first eligible to attend. Typically, graduates should be on track to receive degree conferral 8–10 weeks prior to the ceremony date.
- Graduation is the academic completion of the degree. All degree requirements have been fulfilled and the university has reviewed and approved the application to graduate. This is marked by the receipt of the confirmation of degree conferral from the graduation team. This is an academic-based activity.
- Commencement refers to the optional ceremony that recognizes the academic achievement of graduates. Participation in commencement has no impact on the academic completion of a degree. While all graduate details are provided by the graduation team and based on academic eligibility, commencement is an optional celebratory event that has no impact on the academic completion of a degree.
Registration typically opens three months prior to the ceremony date. To participate in commencement, eligible graduates must successfully register to attend using the unique registration link in their commencement invitation email. Once registered, graduates will receive a confirmation email with important details including how to order regalia, a hotel booking link, schedule information, and more.
During the registration process, graduates will be prompted to pay a commencement fee.* The commencement fee allows the university to provide the graduates who choose to attend commencement with the opportunity to celebrate their educational accomplishments at a physical location.
*The commencement fee is typically $300 but is determined on an event-by-event basis. The fee amount is only guaranteed once registration opens for that ceremony and will be highlighted in the registration communications.
Regalia refers to the ceremonial garments worn during the commencement ceremony. Graduates can purchase regalia from our official provider, Herff Jones, at any time.
If you have questions about what regalia to order or how to wear your regalia, you can watch this video to understand the different types of regalia, how to wear it properly, and more. For additional questions about regalia products, please contact Herff Jones directly.
The number of guest tickets for each graduate is determined by the number of anticipated graduates and available space. To provide a safe environment and a good experience for all graduates, we must determine an equal number of guest tickets for each graduate on an event-by-event basis. The number of guest tickets for each graduate will be noted on the registration communications and the ceremony-specific web page once this information is available.
A ticket denotes a seat, so children ages 3 and younger do not require a ticket to attend. If you have more guests than the designated number, there will be a livestream option for non-ticketed guests to view the ceremony. Unfortunately, we cannot accept any requests for additional tickets. Livestream details for the ceremonies will be available on the ceremony-specific web page when they are available to share.
Graduates and their guests are responsible for making their own arrangements and understanding the specific requirements to travel to and from commencement—including but not limited to travel documents, visas, quarantine periods, medical testing, and vaccination documents.
Any non-U.S. citizens traveling to commencement who reside in a country that does not participate in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) should review the instructions below:*
- Request a graduation verification letter from the Registrar’s Office. The email for verification is [email protected].
- Write a formal letter addressed to the U.S. consulate or embassy in the country where your guest(s) will apply for their visitor visa(s). Although the university may have provided a letter in the past for academic residencies, we cannot provide individualized letters for commencement as a different type of visa is required. However, you may use this template to create your letter.
- Mail the originals or email scanned copies of the two letters above to your guests. Many consular offices are accepting scanned invitation letters. However, we recommend that you also mail the originals to your guests.
- Advise your guests to provide all the information above to their U.S. embassy or consulate when applying for their visitor visas.
*If you or your guests reside in a country that participates in the Visa Waiver Program, you do not need to prepare a formal letter or follow the steps above—provided that you have a valid Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) authorization and e-Passport.