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Graduation
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Graduation FAQ

Commencement ceremonies for the classes of 2014 will be held at 2:00 pm on Sunday, June 15, at the Orpheum Theatre, 1192 Market Street, San Francisco.

Students — Academic Regalia

Students — General Information

Q. When and where is graduation?
Commencement exercises for the Classes of 2014 will be held on Sunday, June 15, at Orpheum Theatre.  The ceremony begins at 2:00 pm and lasts approximately 2 hours. Back to top

Q.  Are tickets required to attend Commencement or the reception?
See email sent from the dean's office regarding tickets.  Any questions, please contact the dean's office.  Back to top

Q. What time should my guests arrive?
To be determined.  Please return to this page at a later date. The ceremony begins at 2:00 pm. Back to top

Q. What if my guests are late?
Latecomers can be accommodated on a space-available basis. Back to top

Q. Are children welcome at the Commencement Ceremony?
Yes. Back to top

Q. Is flash photography allowed at graduation?
You are welcome to take photos and video during the ceremony, but please be considerate when using flash photography. Flash can sometimes distract speakers. Also, the school has arranged for a professional photographer to be on site to take pictures of graduates as they receive the diploma. Copies of the photos will be mailed to graduates in the fall. Back to top

Q. Can I leave the theatre after I receive my diploma?
Please don't. We ask all graduates to return to their seats after receiving their diploma out of respect for their classmates and colleagues. Back to top

Q. What should I wear to Commencement?
Graduation from dental school is not only a significant achievement, it is a formal event steeped in tradition. We ask graduates to dress appropriately for the ceremony.

For men, recommended attire is shirt and tie, dark trousers, dark socks and dark shoes. For women, skirts or pants with a light blouse are appropriate.

Women should also pay attention to footwear: you want to be able to walk comfortably and confidently across the stage. High heels or platform shoes could be problematic.

Shorts, sandals, T-shirts, jeans and the like are not appropriate for Commencement. We also request that students do not broadcast messages on their mortarboards. Back to top

Q. Is there someplace for me to store my valuables during Commencement?
Unfortunately not.  Graduates should leave their valuables and other belongings with family members or guests prior to the start of the ceremony. Back to top

Q. When and where do I get my cap and gown?

Academic regalia (cap/tassel, gown, and hood) will be distributed to students on Wednesday, June 4, from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm and on Thursday, June 5, from 8:00 am to 2:30 pm.  Location TBD. Back to top

Q. What if my gown doesn't fit?
Gowns are intended to be loose fitting. The hem of the gown should fall between the knee and ankle. In the unlikely event that a gown is too short (above the knee) or too long (below the ankle), please bring it promptly to the Office of Academic Affairs. We will exchange it for a better-fitting gown. Back to top

Q. What if my gown does not have the three velvet bars on the sleeve?
If your gown does not have the three velvet bars on the sleeve indicating the doctoral degree, stop by the Office of Academic Affairs immediately. Back to top

Q. What if I forget my regalia on Commencement day?
Unfortunately, replacement regalia is not available on the day of Commencement. Fortunately, no student has ever forgotten their cap and gown. Back to top

Q. Can I keep the regalia?
Unfortunately not. The school rents regalia for each student. Graduates must return everything but the cap and tassel to the designated collection point in the reception area before 5:00 pm on the day of Commencement. Graduates who fail to return regalia will be charged approximately $509 (purchase price of the complete regalia). Hygiene students who do not return the regalia will be charged approximately $282 (purchase price of complete regalia). Back to top

Q. Can I change how my name appears on the diploma?
Diplomas are ordered in April. A name change received in the Office of Academic Affairs before April 18 can be made; changes received after that date can be handled after commencement by ordering a replacement diploma (cost $50). Back to top

Q. Why do I have to provide additional biographical information to Dr. Nadershahi?
The school has a tradition of reading a brief biography on each student as he or she receives the diploma and is hooded. Although the graduate may not hear the information as it is read, it is significant for family members and guests in the audience. The information solicited by Dr. Nadershahi is used for this purpose. The last chance to submit the biography is on the day of cap and gown pickup. Back to top

Q. Can I participate in Commencement if I don't complete the checkout process?
Yes. However, students who have not completed the checkout process do not receive their diploma at Commencement. The diploma will be released after checkout is completed. Back to top

Q. What is the student loan exit interview?
A student loan exit interview is an information session that informs students of their rights and responsibilities regarding student loans. The exit interview is required by federal regulation and university policy of all recipients of federal financial aid.

Students who do not complete the exit interview will have a hold placed on their academic records by the Stockton campus. A hold can have serious negative implications for dental students because the school is unable to release the transcript to licensing boards or other agencies until the hold has been lifted. Back to top

Q. Why do I need to do an exit interview?
Federal regulation mandates that all student loan borrowers attend an exit interview prior to leaving school. The exit interview provides information on loan repayment, the student's rights and responsibilities as a borrower, and the rights and responsibilities of the lender or servicer. The student also receives information on repayment, deferment and consolidation of your loans. It is also important to complete the exit interview otherwise the Stockton campus will place a hold on your records, which could delay the mailing of your transcript to licensing boards or other agencies. Back to top

Q. When does the exit interview have to be completed?
All exit interviews must be completed BEFORE the check out process begins. If the exit interview requirement is not met, the Office of Financial Aid will be unable to sign the student's closeout form. Back to top

Q. How do I complete an exit interview?
Federal loan borrowers must complete the exit interview online at www.nslds.ed.gov. HPSL and institutional loan borrowers must complete an additional exit interview online to fulfill the requirement of the Student Loan Department in Stockton. For more information, please visit the financial aid section of the dental school website. Back to top

Q. What if I do not complete the exit interview?
Borrowers who do not complete the exit interview will have their transcripts held until the exit interview has been completed. Back to top

Q. What is an Authorization to Begin Clearing Process form?
It is a checklist of items all graduating students must complete prior to beginning the final school checkout. The items included on the list must be verified and signed off by the Group Practice Administrator. Back to top

Q. Where do I get an Authorization to Begin Clearing Process form?
The Authorization to Begin Clearing Process form is given to students during their exit interview with the Group Practice Administrator. Back to top

Q. What do I do after the Authorization to Begin Clearing Process form is completed?
The student will return their Authorization to Begin the Clearing Process form to their Group Practice Administrator on the morning of their scheduled clearing. The closeout form will be given to the student at that time. Students will only be allowed to complete the clearing process on the day that they are assigned. The clearing schedule will be posted on the tenth week of the twelfth quarter. Back to top

Q. When do closeout forms need to be completed?
Closeout forms must be completed and submitted prior to graduation otherwise the diploma will be withheld. Back to top

Q. When will I get my diploma?
Students who complete the checkout process and meet all clinical, didactic, national board, and financial requirements for graduation receive their diploma at Commencement. Students who do not complete the checkout process, or who do not meet other requirements for graduation, receive the diploma upon documented completion of any outstanding requirement(s). Back to top