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Information for Degree/Certificate Candidates

All ceremonies are held at the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center (formerly known as the Multipurpose Building).

For information on what to expect leading up to commencement, watch this video!

Information for action items before commencement  

How will I know if I have not met all my requirements for graduation?

It will be important that you monitor your UCM email account closely. When you apply for graduation an evaluation showing remaining degree requirements is emailed to candidates. A mid-semester check is done during your final semester and any deficiencies are emailed to candidates. At the end of the semester, a final check is done and any deficiencies are emailed to the UCM account. In addition, an e-mail message is sent to all students who have been awarded their degree(s)/certificate(s).

Students should also review their Central Degree Audit in MyCentral to be sure that all remaining requirements are in progress.

Numerous additional informative emails are also sent to graduation candidates. It is the responsibility of the student to contact the Registrar's Office to be placed on a future graduation list if removed from the current graduation list due to deficiencies. 

Does participating in the ceremony mean that I graduated?

No, all those who participate in the ceremony are candidates for graduation. Final grades are not available at the time of the commencement ceremonies to determine if all degree requirements have been met.  Final grades will show on transcripts and audits the Wednesday following the ceremony.  The Registrar's Office then begins conferring degrees.  This process takes a few weeks.  Students will be notified by e-mail either confirming graduation or listing deficiencies.

What if I am not attending the ceremony?

If you are not attending the ceremony you will not need to notify anyone.  Graduation fees ($50 billed during your final semester) apply whether or not a candidate participates in the ceremony. You will need to be sure that your diploma address is a good address for the time frame when diplomas will be mailed out (8 to 12 weeks after the ceremony). The diploma address is on file in the Registrar's Office.  You can review and edit this address in MyCentral.  

I won’t finish my requirements until the summer session. Can I still participate in the Spring Ceremony?

Yes, since there is no summer ceremony, students listed as candidates for summer graduation are eligible to "walk-early" in the Spring ceremonies. There is no extra fee for this situation.  Degrees for summer candidates will not be conferred until all degree requirements have been met in August.  There is only one degree conferral date per term, so even if a student completes degree requirements earlier in the summer, degrees are not posted until the entire summer semester has ended.


Announcements and College Ring Sales

Graduation announcements can be purchased from the University Store-The Crossing. Information can be obtained at or by calling 660-543-4370. Jostens' and Balfour representatives will be at the University Store-The Crossing on select days for sales - contact the University Store for details. Inquiries via e-mail can be directed to You may also visit the Jostens website or Balfour and order online. 

How many guests may I bring to Commencement?

Tickets are not required, and graduates may bring an unlimited amount of guests.  Guests with mobility concerns are encourage to arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the ceremony start time as accessible seating is limited.


International Student Visitor Letters


Visitor letters are NOT required to obtain a visitor visa (B-2) to invite family and friends to your commencement ceremony. 

However, if you would like to provide a letter as part of the visa application you may write your own using the template at this link:

Additional information about visitor visas may be found on the U.S. Department of State website:

The University of Central Missouri (UCM) does not issue visitor visa letters, as the consulates do not require letters provided by the university for the processing of B-2 visitor visas.  Guidance from immigration authorities states that universities should avoid becoming involved in visitor visa processing.  


If you require proof of enrollment at UCM for your visitor visa application, you can print a copy of your current schedule from MyCentral from either the UCM Home tab (My Class Schedule in the center column), or your unofficial transcript or the Central Degree Audit from the Student Profile box in the Records/Registration page.

The Registrar’s Office will not provide enrollment verification letters because the documents listed above provide this information.


If you require proof that you have made a graduation application for your visitor visa application, you can print a copy of your graduation application review email that you received from  

The title of this email will be something like: “700XXXXXX Spring 2024 Completed Graduation Application Review.”  If you have misplaced this email, please write to and include your full name and 700 number a note to resend your Completed Graduation Application Review email.

The Registrar’s Office will not provide graduation verification letters because the document listed above provides this information.

If you have not yet applied for graduation please do so now in MyCentral on the “Apply to Graduate” card.  It will take a few weeks to receive your completed graduation application review email. Please be patient.

Is there a graduation rehearsal?

No, but students will receive instructions via email a couple of weeks prior to the ceremony to let you know what to expect before, during, and after the ceremony.  Faculty marshals will be available at the ceremony to let you know when to stand and how to cross the stage.  Make sure to arrive at least 30 minutes prior to your ceremony start time, dressed in your regalia with your name card (name cards can be picked up during finals week in the Registrar's Office (Ward Edwards 1000) or can be obtained at the ceremony).  

Graduation Regalia (Caps/Gowns)

Students do not have to place an order for regalia with the bookstore, making your graduation application reserves regalia for you.

Students are required to wear regalia at commencement ceremonies.  The gowns for undergraduate and graduate students differ slightly and graduate students wear "hoods."  Tassels are the same colors (red & black and undated) for all students.  Tassels are worn on the left side of your face and do not change position during the ceremony.  Students should come dressed in regalia to the ceremony. 

Graduate students should not wear their hoods before the ceremony, but instead will carry their hoods over their left arms to the hooding station.  

The graduation fee covers the following regalia items: cap, gown, tassel, and for those who qualify for Latin Honors (recognized for undergraduate students only), the medalion/ribbon.  The graduation fee does not cover hoods for graduate students ($25) or any additional cords/sashes.

Spring/Summer 2024 degree candidates may pick up regalia at the University Store at the Crossing during regular business hours starting March 12, 2024 or may order their regalia online.  The University Store will be open the days of commencement for regalia pick-up (Friday 8:00-6:00 and Saturday 8:30-5:00), however it is strongly recommended that students do not wait until that day to get regalia.  

If you have questions or need assistance please call the University Bookstore at the Crossing at 660-543-4370. 

What does regalia include?

Undergraduate Students: cap, undergraduate gown, undated tassel

Graduate Students: cap, graduate gown, and undated tassel is included.  The hood is purchased separately for $25.  Hoods are non-refundable unless returned in original, unopened packaging.

Hood colors (for graduate students only):

  • MS: Gold
  • MA: White
  • MAT: White
  • MBA: Tan
  • MLS: Lemon
  • MSE: Light Blue
  • Ed.S.: Light Blue

If you have questions or need assistance please call the University Bookstore at the Crossing at 660-543-4370. 

Undergraduate Students Graduating with Honors

To be eligible for graduation with honors an undergraduate student must have earned both cumulative and Central Missouri grade point averages of 3.50. *Graduate students are not recognized with honors. 
Those with a cumulative and Central Missouri grade point average of 3.50 to 3.74 graduate Cum Laude; 3.75 to 3.84, Magna Cum Laude; and 3.85 and above, Summa Cum Laude. Both the cumulative and Central Missouri grade point averages must fall into the same grade category to qualify for that honors designation. Should the Central Missouri and cumulative GPAs be in different grade categories, the lower designation of honors will be recognized. 

Designation of graduation with final honors is noted on the diploma and official transcript once semester grades are finalized. 

*Qualification for graduation with honors at the time of the ceremony is based on available grades up to that date and does not include final semester grades. Actual graduation with honors will not be determined until the final semester grades are calculated. If a student's honors classification changes after final grades are calculated, the student may exchange (or pick up) their honors ribbon at the University Store-The Crossing. 

Are there cords for those undergraduate students graduating with academic honors?

Undergraduate candidates graduating with academic honors will wear medallions that are available for pick-up with the cap and gown in the University Store-The Crossing. The level of academic honors is based on your current grade point averages, both cumulative and UCM GPAs are considered. The lowest GPA will be used to determine academic honors. This will not include grades from your final semester.  

Academic honors will be announced as your name is read when you cross the stage at the ceremony and are listed in the Commencement Program. Academic honors also will be on your transcript and diploma. 

Cum Laude (3.50 – 3.74) - White ribbons 

Magna Cum Laude (3.75 - 3.84) - Red ribbons 

Summa Cum Laude (3.85 – 4.00) - Gold ribbons 

What about cords/sashes for other honors or organizations?

Students who are part of the Honors College, other honorary societies, and Greek organizations may wear cords/sashes granted to them by these groups.  These may be obtained directly from the respective organization and may be at an additional cost.  Organizations may contact the University Store to order cords for their members.  For those who qualify for Latin Honors (recognized for undergraduate students only) the medalion/ribbon is included with the graduation fee.

Graduation Fees

Each degree candidate must pay a non-refundable graduation fee. The graduation fee is $50.  Graduation charges will be placed on accounts in April for Spring candidates, July for Summer candidates, and in November for Fall candidates.

The graduation fee applies whether or not a candidate participates in the ceremony or completes the degree/certificate. If a student fails to graduate, but then does so at a later semester, they will not be charged again. The graduation fee covers the following regalia items: cap, gown, tassel, and for those who qualify for Latin Honors (recognized for undergraduate students only), the medalion/ribbon.  The graduation fee does not cover hoods for graduate students ($25) or any additional cords/sashes.

Students who earn more than one credential in the same semester (example: a degree and two certificates) only pay one graduation fee ($50).  Students who earn more than one credential over multiple semesters will pay a graduation fee ($50) each semester they earn a degree/certificate.

All charges must be paid before a transcript or diploma will be issued. Charges may be paid in the Office of Student Financial Services, Ward Edwards Building, Room 1100, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. M-F, with cash, check or credit card. Payment may also be madeonline or be mailed to the Office of Student Financial Services. Please call 660-543-8266 if you have any questions. 

Name Cards

The name card is the card a graduation candidate presents to the reader before crossing the stage at the commencement ceremony. This is how your name will appear on your diploma.  Do not alter your name card. 

Name cards can be picked up during Monday through Thursday of Finals Week (May 1-4) in the the Registrar's Office (Ward Edwards 1000) during normal business hours (M-Th 8-5).  Please bring a picture ID.   Students who are unable to get to the Registrar's Office during those days/times may pick up their name card on the day of their ceremony 1 hour before ceremony time in the ticket booth at the west doors of the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center).

On Campus Housing Information

All residence halls close at 6 p.m. on the Friday of the first commencement ceremony. Degree candidates living in the residence halls and participating in the Commencement Ceremony are allowed to stay in their rooms to participate in their ceremony.  Students must check out no later than the day after their ceremony.  Arrangements to check out with a housing staff member must be made prior to Friday. 

All apartments (excluding the Crossing) close at 6 p.m. on the Friday of the first commencement ceremony. Degree candidates living in Foster/Knox, Nickerson Apartments, Greenwood Park, Central Village, or Todd Hall are allowed to stay in their rooms to participate in their ceremony.  Students must check out no later than the day after their ceremony.  Arrangements to check out with a housing staff member must be made prior to Friday. 

Returning Books

Rented textbooks may be returned anytime during the semester to the University Store. During finals, rental returns will be accepted at the University Store-The Crossing, Monday - Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Late returns will be subject to a $58 late fee per book. No returns will be accepted after May 3rd, 2024. Students will be charged the new replacement cost for the non-returned rental textbooks if the books have not been received by close of business on May 3rd, 2024.


Looking your best and conducting yourself in a manner appropriate to the decorum of this time-honored ceremony are ways you can show pride in your accomplishment. Here are some tips to help make your Commencement Day special: 

  • Make arrangements to meet your family and friends at a specified location after the ceremony, perhaps at your car or somewhere in the parking lot. Finding them may be difficult after the ceremony. 

  • The building will close 30 minutes after the ceremony so that preparations for the next ceremony can begin. 

  • Dress comfortably but appropriately. Don't add anything "extra" to your academic costume. Members of Phi Kappa Phi are allowed to wear white ribbons with blue lettering medallions. Members of The Honors College are allowed to wear gold cords that are distributed by the Dean of The Honors College prior to the day of Commencement. Members of Mortar Board, Tassels Chapter, wear a black and gold pin. Members of various recognized student associations can wear distinctive collars or cords that are distributed by their sponsors. Candidates graduating with honors will wear medallions that are available for pick up with the cap and gown in the University Store-The Crossing. Academic honors are announced as candidates cross the stage.
  • The mortar board rests squarely on the top of the head, forward enough for the point of the cap to extend about halfway down the forehead, with the tassel on your left. Remember this as you style your hair. 

  • Moving the tassel from right to left upon graduation, common at high school ceremonies, is not part of the ceremony at Central Missouri. The tassel stays on the left at all times. 

  • At UCM, faculty and staff add colorful hoods that attach in the front, drape the shoulders and extend halfway down the back. The colors indicate various academic disciplines and institutions. 

  • Men should wear a dress shirt and tie. Although some consider the ties optional, the shirt collar and tie are visible at the throat of the gown. A suit or sport coat is certainly appropriate, but a coat may be too warm for comfort. If that's the case, leave your coat with family or friends during the ceremony so you have it available for other activities before and after Commencement. 

  • Most women prefer to wear a dress, suit or skirt and blouse, although dress slacks are also appropriate. Try to choose a dress or skirt with a hemline that does not extend below the gown.

  • Leave your purse with family or friends. 

  • Wear comfortable dress shoes. 

  • Programs are provided for graduation candidates at their seats. 

Special Needs

Students or guests with special needs will find accessible parking at the west side of the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center).  You can exit your family car at the curb for the shortest distance to the entrance. If you need a wheelchair to better enjoy the program, it is advised that you bring one with you. Most communities have locations to rent or borrow a wheelchair, such as drug stores, disability programs, churches or service organizations (American Legion, etc.). 

Wheelchair seating and space for one companion is available in two areas: along the first row of the south bleachers accessed by a ramp at each end; and on the mezzanine level of the north seating accessed by an elevator in the east hallway. Staff may direct guests to the end of the floor seating once graduates and faculty have filed in. 

The first three rows of seats on the north side are reserved for persons with disabilities and one companion. There is not space for families to sit together in this area unless they want to sit in the fourth row. We recommend you arrive early as this seating does fill. There is space to store walkers at each end of this seating while you enjoy the program. 

Persons who are deaf or have low vision and one companion may want to sit at the west end of the reserved seating to be close to the ASL interpreters and to view the presenters on the stage. 


Information for Parents and Guests

Commencement Ceremonies are held in the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center)  (500 S Washington St). Doors will open 1 hour prior to the commencement start time. 

  • Tickets are not required for the Commencement Ceremony and a student may invite any number of guests.
  • Parking and seating for guests with special needs are available at the west end of the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center) . Please arrive early for these services. 
  • Guests are not permitted in the graduate seating area on the main floor of the auditorium. 
  • Taking pictures and videotaping are allowed, but tripods and monopods are not permitted. Cameras must be battery-operated. 
  • Guests are asked not to block the aisles or view of other guests.  

Interactive Map of Campus  
Map of Warrensburg 


Accommodations for Family and Guests

The following is a list of some Warrensburg and surrounding area accommodations: 

Warrensburg Accommodations: 

Best Western - Warrensburg Inn 
626 E. Russell Ave. 

Comfort Inn - Warrensburg Station 
609 E. Russell Ave. 
660-429-4848 or 800-228-5150

Days Inn 
204 Cleveland 
660-429-2400 or 800-329-7466 

Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Warrensburg
355 East Russell Ave. 

Holiday Inn Express & Suites - Warrensburg North
1005 Hawthorne Blvd.

Super 8 by Wyndham Warrensburg 
439 East Russell Ave. 
660-429-2183 or 800-800-8000 

Cena's Nook Bed & Breakfast
110 East Hale Lake Road



Knob Noster (10 Miles East of Warrensburg): 

Econo Lodge 
2340 W. Irish Ln. 

611 Hillcrest Dr. 
Book online 


Sedalia (28 Miles East of Warrensburg): 

Best Western State Fair Inn 
3120 S. Limit Ave. 

Budget Host Super 7 Motel 
5650 S. Limit Ave. 

Comfort Inn 
3600 W. Broadway Blvd. 

Econo Lodge Truman Inn 
3501 W. Broadway Blvd. 

Holiday Inn Express 
4001 W. Broadway Blvd. 

Super 8 Motel 
3402 W. Broadway Blvd. 


Higginsville (15 Miles North of Warrensburg): 

Super 8 Hotel
I-70 and Missouri Hwy 13 - Exit 49 

Information for action items during commencement  

Getting to Campus

The address of the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center) is 500 South Washington Street, Warrensburg, MO 64093.  
Click here for driving directions to campus. 

Parking at Commencement

There is ample parking for the commencement ceremony around the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center) (500 S Washington St). Guests may also park in any other campus parking lot (student and faculty lots) or on Warrensburg city streets, as permitted. 

Parking spaces will be marked for special needs guests at the west side entrance of the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center).

See our parking map for locations of parking lots on campus. 

Before being seated, please pick a place outside of the building to meet up with your guests. The recessional will lead graduates out of the building at the east and southeast exits.  

Assembly Areas

Degree candidates in academic regalia (caps and gowns) should find their seat on floor of the Multipurpose Building (also known as the Jerry M. Hughes Athletics Center) 30 minutes prior to your allotted ceremony time.  Rows will be marked by academic college and faculty marshals will be there to assist you with seating.  Make sure you have your name card!


Where will I be seated on the auditorium floor?

 Graduation candidates are seated on the floor of the auditorium. Students will be grouped by college/academic program.  There is no way to predict which side of the arena you will end up sitting on. Students will be released to cross the stage starting with those in the front of the arena. Students walk up the right side of the auditorium, cross the stage, and walk back down the left side of the auditorium. Parents and guests will be able to get photos by sitting on any side of the auditorium. 

How Long Does the Ceremony Last?

The ceremony will last approximately 60-75 minutes. At the end of the ceremony, participants and guests will have 15 minutes to exit the building so that preparations for the next commencement ceremony may begin. 

What if my name is hard to pronounce?

 You can write it out phonetically above your printed name on your name card. You can also pronounce your name for the reader when you hand the reader your name card. 

Information for action items after commencement  

Becoming an Alumnus

Congratulations! Your degree is your passport into official alumni status.  Welcome to the family of nearly 100,000 alumni living and working around the world. Your Alumni Foundation is committed to being a resource to you and keeping you connected with the university through email, social media, networking events, regional gatherings, website news and the award-winning UCM Magazine. There are many benefits of  being an active member of UCM's alumni community, including opportunities to mentor, volunteer and share your expertise with current students. Please stay in touch with your Alma mater by keeping your information up to date and sharing your successes. Contact your Alumni Foundation by calling 660-543-8000, emailing, or connecting online at 

Career and Life Design Center

Don't forget, after graduation the Career and Life Design Center is still here to assist you with all of your career development needs. 

Please complete the online survey here if you are: 

  • Employed (Full-Time) 
  • Participating in a volunteer or service program 
  • Serving in the military 
  • Enrolled in a degree program of continuing education 

For additional help or information, please visit our website or call our office at 660-543-4985. 

Commencement Videos

A flash drive of the ceremony can be purchased for $13. Send requests noting the date and time of the ceremony in which you are interested to Dr. Joe Moore, UCM Media Network, Martin 136, University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, MO 64093. Checks should be made payable to the UCM Media Network. For more information, contact Dr. Moore at 

Graduation Photos


A professional photographer from GradImages will take 3-4 photographs of each degree candidate as they cross the stage.  Students will receive a digital proof of their photos on an order card within 5 to 7 days following the ceremony. 

Students are not obligated to purchase any of these photos. GradImages customer service can be contacted 24/7 at 800-261-2576 and at Students may register with GradImages to ensure that their graduation proofs can be delivered in a timely manner. Students may also select "Pre-Event Registration" to enter their email address and add addresses of family and friends that would like to view the proofs.  There is no obligation to order photographs; this is merely a service.


UCM diplomas are printed on 8.5" by 11" paper and are in the portrait orientation. Diplomas include your degree name, major, and academic honors (if applicable). Diplomas do not include minors. Students are issued the only copy of their diploma, UCM does not keep copies. 

Diplomas will be mailed approximately 6 to 8 weeks after grades are available to the diploma address you have on file with your application in the Registrar's Office. Diplomas sent to addresses outside of the United States will require an additional $10 mailing fee. The address you indicated must be good for that time frame. Diplomas will not be forwarded by the Post Office. This address is only used to mail your diploma.  

You can review/edit this address in MyCentral.You may also contact the Office of the Registrar in Ward Edwards Building, Room 1000 or at with any diploma address changes. Please specify the address is for your diploma. Diploma address changes cannot be taken by telephone. Inquiries via e-mail can be directed to If you update your local or primary mailing address, your diploma address will not be changed unless requested.  

If you move to an address other than the one on file in the Registrar's Office and fail to notify the Registrar's Office, we cannot guarantee you will receive your diploma. Returned diplomas will incur a $10 fee to be mailed again. If the diploma is lost in the mail a fee is required before a duplicate diploma will be ordered. 

Frame Your Diploma

A great way to show your Central Missouri pride and to let the world know of your accomplishment is to frame your diploma. A variety of custom frames and mats are available from the University Store-The Crossing. UCM diplomas are printed on 8.5" by 11" paper and are in the portrait orientation. Check the University Store web site for the complete assortment. 




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