FSCJ Hybrid Commencement Ceremony
Thursday, May 13, 2021 at 4 p.m.
Registration for the 2021 Commencement Ceremony has closed. At this time, all eligible graduates have been provided information pertaining to their participation. For questions, please submit a ticket at help.fscj.edu
After exploring several options for the 2021 Commencement Ceremony, considering capacities, accommodations, availability, costs and safety precautions, as well as the results of the recent graduate survey, we have decided the 2021 Commencement Ceremony will be a hybrid celebration.
The ceremony will be streamed live on fscj.edu/commencement on May 13, 2021 at 4 p.m. Following last year’s format, the ceremony will include messages from faculty, staff and students, as well as personalized slides with name, picture and written message for each graduate who registers to participate. More information on this will be shared in the coming weeks.
Additionally, we will also host several “Commencement Caravan” drive-through campus events prior to the ceremony where students will receive a commemorative “Commencement in a Box,” with important, memorable keepsake items. Each student who registers to participate in these drive-through events will be allowed to bring one vehicle with their family and friends to share in the celebration and take pictures. Registration will be required, so graduates will need to register early in order to receive one of these boxes before they are gone. Details about these drive-through events will be shared in the coming months.
Summer and Fall 2020 graduates, as well as Spring 2021 eligible graduates have been contacted regarding their participation in the virtual ceremony. Summer 2021 graduates are invited to the Spring 2022 ceremony.
Follow this link to watch the 2020 Virtual Commencement Ceremony.
For recent graduates with questions about your diploma, please submit a help desk ticket at help.fscj.edu so we can assist you.
Q: Will the Commencement Ceremony be held in person or virtually?
A: Given the continuing concern and uncertainty regarding COVID-19, we have decided the 2021 Commencement Ceremony will be a hybrid celebration. The virtual ceremony will be posted on our Commencement website for viewing on May 13, 2021. With this, we will also host several “Commencement Caravan” drive-through campus events prior to the ceremony where you will receive your commemorative “Commencement in a Box” and have an opportunity to safely celebrate with your family and friends.
Q: Who can participate in the 2021 Commencement celebration?
A:To participate in the 2021 Commencement Ceremony, students must meet the following criteria:
Student has earned an Associate or Baccalaureate degree in the Summer or Fall of 2020, or are expected to graduate in Spring 2021
Please Note: Students who have earned high school equivalency and/or diplomas will be honored in a separate ceremony on June 3.
Q: What is the difference between “graduation” and “Commencement? ”
A: Commencement traditionally refers to the ceremony held at the end of Spring term every year. It is a ceremony where your academic accomplishments are recognized among family, friends, peers, faculty and staff.
Graduation refers to the awarding of degrees and certificates to students who meet all graduation requirements. At the end of each term, students that meet all graduation requirements will automatically be awarded their degree or certificate.
Q: When will I receive my official diploma?
A: Summer and Fall 2020 graduates should already have received your diploma.
For Spring 2021 Graduates:
5/21/2021: The degree message will be reflected on students’ transcripts
6–8 weeks after 5/21/2021: Diplomas will be mailed to students
Q: What is a Commencement Caravan event?
A: These are drive-through events where registered students will be presented with their commemorative “Commencement in a Box” by FSCJ’s administrators, receive special alumni gifts, and have a chance to capture a special memory in their graduation cap (provided in the Commencement box) or regalia (if purchased online) at the photo opportunity station. Each student is encouraged to bring their family or friends (one vehicle per graduate) with them to celebrate in this momentous occasion. These events will be held on our Kent, Downtown, North and South campuses.
Q: How do I register for a Commencement Caravan event?
A: You will register for one of these events after you complete your Commencement RSVP in myFSCJ. You will follow the link provided to you in the Commencement email you received to your student account to reserve your spot for the date/time/campus that you plan to attend. You must register for one of these events by February 26 in order to receive a Commencement in a Box. You can only register for ONE event. If you try to register for more than one event, your registration will not be counted and you will not be eligible.
Q: What do I need to bring to a Commencement Caravan event?
A: You will need to bring your FSCJ or government issued ID card to verify your identity. Please also have your student ID number written down in case it is needed. You are also encouraged to bring your family members or friends in the car with you to enjoy the celebration. We also recommend a cell phone or camera to take a picture to remember the day.
Q: What can I expect during the Commencement Caravan event?
A: When you show up to the campus during the time you registered for, you will remain in your vehicle and be greeted by an FSCJ staff member who will confirm your identity and honors status. You will then be directed on where to go to receive your “Commencement in a Box,” Alumni goodies, Honors Cords (as appropriate) and will then be directed to the photo opportunity station where you will finish. At that time, you and your family or friends will be able to take a picture in front of the designated backdrop. Each graduate can take one individual photo that can be used for the Virtual Commencement Ceremony and one group photo with family/friends.
Q: What is a “Commencement in a Box”?
A: This is a specially designed keepsake box that includes important pieces that reflect the high caliber recognition of this achievement. The box includes a graduation cap, tassel, FSCJ signet, diploma cover, letter of recognition and more features that you will be able to keep to remember this accomplishment. In order to receive a “Commencement in a Box,” you must register early to ensure you receive one of the boxes. If the maximum number is reached, there will not be any more boxes available.
Q: If I need special accommodations to attend the Commencement Caravan event, who do I contact?
A: For students needing to arrange special accommodations at the event, email firstname.lastname@example.org in advance of the event you registered for.
Q: What is the Virtual Commencement Ceremony and how will I watch it?
A: This is the official ceremony that honors and recognizes the achievements and accomplishments of graduates. The ceremony will be available to view on May 13, 2021 at 4 p.m. here. Your friends and family can also follow along on social media by using the hashtag #fscjgrad2021.The ceremony will include messages from FSCJ’s administration, faculty, staff and student leaders, as well as the personalized graduate slides for registered graduates. Slides will include graduate name, submitted picture, honors recognition and written message.
Q: Will my name still be read in the virtual ceremony?
A: Yes! You must make sure to register (or double-check the fields you already completed) in the MarchingOrder portal (see instructions below). Without doing this, your name will not be read.
Q: Approximately how long will the ceremony last?
A: Since this is still a new process, we cannot provide an exact estimate on how long the ceremony will last. We hope to keep it under two hours, depending on the number of students who register.
Virtual Commencement Ceremony Vendor Information
We are working with two separate vendors, MarchingOrder and StageClip, acting as a team to provide specific services for the virtual Commencement ceremony. MarchingOrder will collect your name, phonetic pronunciation, photo, and textual message (up to 150 characters). StageClip will collect your 12 second video upload (this is optional). There are deadlines associated with each and you will receive communication from each vendor with instructions for uploading your information. The following FAQs should provide additional information.
Q: What are the important dates I need to know?
A: Important Dates
- February 26 – Last day for students to register in myFSCJ by updating their RSVP to Yes or No for participating in the virtual ceremony. This includes registering for a designated Commencement Caravan event to pick up your “Commencement in a Box,” (quantities permitting). This is also the deadline for students to have their name announced and graduate slide included in the virtual ceremony and appear in the digital Commencement program.
- April 7 - MarchingOrder's website portal will launch for students to submit their name, picture and message. MarchingOrder will communicate with students before this date with more information.
- April 25 - Last day for students to upload their name, picture and text message to the MarchingOrder portal to be included in the virtual ceremony.
- April 29 - StageClip's website portal will launch for students to upload their video. StageClip will communicate with students before this date with more information.
- May 2 - Last day for students to upload their video to the StageClip portal to be included in the virtual ceremony.
Q: What are the exact steps I need to follow?
- Log in to myFSCJ to update your RSVP by February 26 to confirm your participation in the virtual ceremony and ability to attend a Commencement Caravan event.
- Then, log in to the MarchingOrder portal at www.marchingorder.com beginning April 7 and no later than April 25 and complete one of the following steps:
- If you have not already registered in MarchingOrder, please complete all of the fields.
- If you have already registered in MarchingOrder, please confirm your information is correct.
If you do not complete the step above, you will not have a photo in the virtual ceremony.
- StageClip will send an invitation on April 29 to upload your content to their portal. Each graduate who has registered in myFSCJ for the virtual ceremony will have the opportunity to upload a 12 second video. Please follow all instructions in the invitation and on their web portal to have the best video possible. This video is optional. You do not have to submit a video to be included in the ceremony. This is a separate video you will download from the website on the day of the virtual ceremony.
If you do not complete the step above, you will not have a graduate video to download on May 13, but your name and picture will still be included in the ceremony.
Q: If I need assistance registering for Commencement in myFSCJ, what do I do?
Open a help desk ticket at help.fscj.edu for online assistance using these fields – Category: myFSCJ-Student, Subcategory: Student Records.
Q: If I have already registered in MarchingOrder, do I need to do anything else?
A: Yes! Please update to make sure all of the fields are correct by logging into the MarchingOrder portal. You must make this update by April 25. If you do not complete this step, you will not have a photo in the virtual ceremony.
Q: If I haven’t yet registered in MarchingOrder, do I still need to do so?
A: Yes! If you want to have your photo in the virtual ceremony, you must register at MarchingOrder by April 25. If you do not complete this step, you will not have a photo in the virtual ceremony.
Q: Can a student who uses ADA accommodations still submit their information?
A: Yes, the website portal used by MarchingOrder for students to submit their information works with screen readers. The StageClip portal uses YouTube Premiere as their video platform which has a CC functionality in place.
Q: What is the recommended attire for my picture and/or video?
A: Dress for the pictures and videos submitted should reflect the important nature of the Commencement ceremony. Graduates who receive a “Commencement in a Box” will receive a graduation cap and tassel that can be worn in the picture. We also encourage graduates to order a gown online to wear in your picture, but it is not required. Clothing should not be revealing or display any text or graphics that could be offensive to others.
Q: What if I don’t want to upload a photo of myself for the virtual ceremony slide?
A: That is okay. It is not required for you to have a photo, and your name will still be read in the ceremony if you register by February 26. You still need to upload your name with any phonetic spelling or pronunciation guidance to the MarchingOrder portal.
Q: How will I know when my name will be called?
A: Your name will be called by a professional reader and your slide will be presented in alphabetical order by degree – Baccalaureate, Associate in Arts and Associate in Science degrees. Students who believe that the readers may have trouble pronouncing their names can spell their names phonetically when submitting their information to MarchingOrder.
Q: Where can I purchase graduation announcements?
A: Announcements are available from the campus/center bookstores or on the website. Visit the bookstore website to order or call any bookstore.
Q: When and where can I purchase a cap and gown?
A: While regalia is not required for this year’s ceremony, students receiving a “Commencement in a Box” will receive a graduation cap and tassel. For those not receiving a box and wanting to order a cap and gown, or for graduates who want to order a gown to wear with the cap they receive, you can order regalia here. You must place your order by March 19 if you want it shipped directly to you to receive it in time to wear for the picture you submit to MarchingOrder. If you want to purchase in-store without placing an order, visit the South Campus bookstore during posted hours beginning March 15. If you want to pick up from a different campus, order online by March 19 and choose the pick-up location you want.
Q: Will I still receive my honors cords?
A: Yes. Honor cords will be distributed to graduates at the Commencement Caravan events. Anticipated honors will be determined based on the February 26 deadline for Spring graduates.
Q: Will my name appear in the Commencement program?
A: Only students who have registered in myFSCJ to participate in the Commencement ceremony by February 26 will be included in the digital Commencement program.
Q: Will I be listed as honors in the program?
A: The digital Commencement program will recognize students who register for the ceremony who are graduating with honors. Anticipated honors will be determined based on the February 26 deadline for Spring graduates.
If you cannot find the information you are looking for about the 2021 Commencement ceremony in the FAQ above, please email email@example.com.