CSU, Chico Commencement

Frequently Asked Questions

In-Person Ceremonies FAQ

More information will be provided as it becomes available.

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  • May 2021 graduate-only, in-person ceremonies

    The Class of 2020 ceremony will be held on May 16. The Class of 2021 ceremonies will be held May 20-23. The schedule will be announced April 15 here.

    To participate, graduates first need to register for the ceremonies, starting April 16 here. Graduates that already registered must re-register to express their intent. In-person participants must also complete the requirements of the virtual ceremonies, as content from that system will be used for the in the in-person events.

    The ceremonies will stream simultaneously from the Chico State homepage so friends and family can watch from home. Look for a banner at the top of the page. 

    There will be photographers from GradImages present to take photos of all graduates. 

  • How can friends and family watch the in-person ceremonies

    All in-person ceremonies will stream simultaneously from the Chico State homepage. Tune in during your graduate's ceremony to see them cross the stage. Look for a banner at the top of the page. 

  • Can I take my mask off when I cross the stage?

    Yes! You will be directed at the stadium when it is safe and appropriate for you to take off your mask. You can remove your mask for professional photos with Grad Images and when you cross the stage. 

  • Stage Clip - Submit your photo, video, and personal message.

    Your graduation is a remarkable achievement—one that deserves as much pomp and circumstance as possible. That’s why we partnered with StageClip to create graduation "clips" for each graduate as part of the virtual Commencement ceremonies. These clips are a way for everyone to celebrate you and your class, including your family, friends, fellow graduates, and supporters who joined you on your path to a degree.

    All graduates registered for Commencement are included in the virtual celebrations. Your clip is a punctuation mark on a lifetime memory. Make it special by adding a photo, personal message, and/or video. Your clip is downloadable and sharable. This content will not be displayed in the in-person ceremonies. Regalia is not required for your photo or video. Graduates are encouraged to choose a nice portrait or a photo that represents your time at Chico State.

    We are asking all graduates to complete their clip, to create a true record of Commencement 2021. Many of our graduates cannot return to Chico for the in-person celebrations, and the virtual ceremony will be how they celebrate. Your participation helps ensure everyone has a robust and memorable ceremony.

    You have received an unique link from noreply@mail.stageclip.com. Use that to upload your content. You can choose which pieces of content to include – just a photo and message for example. If you are participating in a virtual ceremony and special celebration, you have a unique link for each event and should personalize both.

    All content is due May 10 by midnight. Thank you for making Commencement memorable for everyone.

  • Why are the ceremonies graduate-only?

    Our University facilities and staff resources can safely manage under California Department of Public Health guidelines 3,000 grads over four days in smaller ceremonies. Neither the University nor our small community during a pandemic can safely manage the 30,000 guests who usually attend commencement ceremonies. California Department of Public Health guidelines strongly discourage non-essential travel especially for individuals who have yet been fully vaccinated. It with the best interests for the health and safety for all that we ask family and friends not to travel to Chico for Commencement week.

  • What ceremony am I eligible for?

    Chico State has a five-semester window of eligibility for Commencement outlined below. 

    Commencement 2020 Eligibility - Grads that finished their degree requirements in:

    Summer 2019, Fall 2019, Spring 2020

    Commencement 2021 Eligibility – Grads finishing their degree requirements in:

    Summer 2020, Fall 2020, Spring 2021, Summer 2021**, Fall 2021**

    Commencement 2022 Eligibility – Grads finishing their degree requirements in:

    Summer 2021**, Fall 2021**, Spring 2022, Summer 2022, Fall 2022

    **Graduates completing degrees in Summer or Fall 2021 must choose between participating in 2021 or 2022.

  • Can I defer to walk another year?

    Unfortunately, no. The University's Commencement weekend in a normal year welcomes 35,000 guests to Chico. Our community and facilities are not designed to allow for large fluctuations above that number for graduates that would like to defer. Please refer to the eligibility window to understand which ceremony you can participate in.  

  • Herff Jones - Regalia

    Regalia is required for in-person ceremonies. It is available for purchase only and will be shipped to graduates homes. Please see important dates and deadlines for instructions.

  • Jostens - Class Rings

    Class rings are available for purchase from Jostens. 

  • Ordering announcements and diploma frames

    You can order announcements from Herff Jones. Buy here

  • Buy the Grad T-shirt
  • Graduation Photos - GradImages

    Graduation photographers will be at all in-person ceremonies. Register now and save 20% on purchases over $50. Dates and details are coming.

    Graduates may also choose to sign up for campus photo days on April 28 & 29.

  • Grad Boxes

    Graduates that register for Commencement will receive a Grad Box with their diploma cover, Commencement program, and other goodies. We will ship them to the local address on file in the Portal. Make sure to update your local address, even if it's not in Chico, to ensure we ship to the correct location.

    Your diploma will be mailed to your permanent address. 

Virtual Ceremonies FAQ

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  • May 2021 virtual ceremonies

    On May 20 at 3 p.m. PST Chico State's virtual Commencement ceremony page will go live. It's not a live event.  If you're not available at that time, the page will stay up for one year. There you can find each graduate's individual profile as well as all ceremonies they are in. It is not a livestream of the in-person ceremonies - See info about about in-person streams in section above.

    Each ceremony will have remarks from President Hutchinson, Provost Larson, a faculty member, and a student. There will also be a procession of graduates, and the conferring of degrees. Individual student clips will include a photo, personal message, and 10-second video, and students' names will be announced by a professional name reader. Clips can be downloaded to save or shared on social media. Here is an demonstration clip.

    We will also hold premiere watch parties for each ceremony from May 20 – 23. That schedule will be released by April 15 on the Commencement Schedule page. Those will be live events and include a chat feature. 

    A variety of in-person and virtual celebrations will also be held by individual colleges and departments. Please contact programs you are involved with to learn about those opportunities. 

    To participate, students first need to register for the ceremonies here

  • Is the virtual ceremony a live event?

    Yes and no. The virtual ceremony page is not a live event. It is a web page that will be accessible for one year.

    However, we will also hold premiere watch parties for each ceremony from May 20 – 23. That schedule will be released by April 15 on the Commencement Schedule page. Those will be live events and include a chat feature. 

    These are not livestreams of the in-person ceremonies. 

  • StageClip - Submit your photo, video, and personal message

    Your graduation is a remarkable achievement—one that deserves as much pomp and circumstance as possible. That’s why we partnered with StageClip to create graduation "clips" for each graduate as part of the virtual Commencement ceremonies. These clips are a way for everyone to celebrate you and your class, including your family, friends, fellow graduates, and supporters who joined you on your path to a degree.

    All graduates registered for Commencement are included in the virtual celebrations. Your clip is a punctuation mark on a lifetime memory. Make it special by adding a photo, personal message, and/or video. Your clip is downloadable and sharable. This content will not be displayed in the in-person ceremonies. Regalia is not required. Graduates are encouraged to choose a nice portrait or a photo that represents your time at Chico State.

    We are asking all graduates to complete their clip, to create a true record of Commencement 2021. Many of our graduates cannot return to Chico for the in-person celebrations, and the virtual ceremony will be how they celebrate. Your participation helps ensure everyone has a robust and memorable ceremony.

    You have received an unique link from noreply@mail.stageclip.com. Use that to upload your content. You can choose which pieces of content to include – just a photo and message for example. If you are participating in a virtual ceremony and special celebration, you have a unique link for each event and should personalize both.

    All content is due May 10 by midnight. Thank you for making Commencement memorable for everyone.

  • Will my graduation application fee be refunded?

    No. Graduation and Commencement are separate. Graduation is completing your degree requirements and receiving your diploma. Commencement is the ceremony. The graduation application fee is due one year in advance of completing your degree requirements. It funds many aspects of graduation including part of the Commencement ceremony, graduates’ diplomas, mailing, etc. Graduating seniors should pay their fee as scheduled so that their diplomas can be issued after the completion of their degree requirements by the Registrar’s office. This is a fee paid by all students whether or not they participate in the Commencement ceremony.

  • Hotel refunds

    The Office of Commencement has surveyed many of the hotels in the area and all are providing cancellations and full refunds. If you are having any trouble canceling a reservation make sure to first contact the property directly (not the 800 number). If you continue to have issues please alert our office by contacting commencement@csuchico.edu.

  • Herff Jones - Regalia

    Regalia is not a requirement for the virtual ceremony. However, graduates may choose to purchase regalia or individual regalia items for photos or keepsakes. Shipping may take up to three weeks, so if you want regalia for your virtual ceremony photo, place your orders early. No rentals are available in 2021. All items will be shipped to your home. You may choose to purchase just a cap or tassel instead of a full regalia package. 

  • Jostens - Class Rings

    Class rings are available for purchase from Jostens.

  • Ordering announcements and diploma frames

    You can order announcements from Herff Jones. Buy here [LINK]

  • Buy the Grad T-shirt
  • Graduation Photos - GradImages

    April 28 & 29 our Commencement photographer, GradImages will be on campus to take photos. This will be by appointment only. Appointments are free. You can see your photos before purchasing. Photo purchasing starts at $40. Register now and save 20% on purchases over $50. Dates and details are coming.

    Graduates from the Class of 2020 and Class of 2021 are welcome to make Commencement photo appointments. 

    Regalia is not required for photos. 

    Commencement photographers will ALSO be at the in-person ceremonies.

  • Grad Boxes

    Graduates that register for Commencement will receive a grad box with their diploma cover, Commencement program, and other goodies. We will ship them to the local address on file in the portal. Make sure to update your local address, even if it's not in Chico, to ensure we ship to the correct location.

    Your diploma will be mailed to your permanent address.