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Frequently Asked Questions

CSULB Graduates take their seats at the ceremony

FAQs for the Classes of 2020 and 2021

Why are we not allowed to gather to celebrate Commencement?

CSULB is not allowed to provide an in-person commencement by direction of the Long Beach Department of Public Health. The local county Public Health departments are adopting a staged approach, supported by science and public health expertise, to allow for people to start to use public spaces again in ways that will limit the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Their guidance will determine when and how we can safely host a large-scale inclusive event.

When are the 2020 Commencement ceremonies scheduled to take place?

The university explored many options for rescheduled commencement ceremonies for the Class of 2020. Unfortunately, local Public Health officials did not approve our latest, most cautious proposal for commencement ceremonies this Fall.  

The Class of 2020 is now scheduled to celebrate alongside the Class of 2021 during the week of May 17-23, 2021. While the delay may be disappointing, it is necessary to safeguard the health of those in attendance and meet the expectations of our students and families to offer an in-person experience. 

We will provide an additional update about ceremony, venue and activities in December 2020.   

Virtual content for the class of 2020 will remain available on the Commencement website, where we celebrate the accomplishments of our graduates, including special congratulatory messages from President Jane Close Conoley and the college deans.

For campus updates please visit, Reuniting the Beach.

When are the 2021 Commencement ceremonies scheduled to take place?

While future planning is difficult at this time, we will continue working with the Long Beach Department of Public Health to safely host an inclusive event for the class of 2021 the week of May 17-23, 2021. A more specific schedule is still to come.

Am I eligible to graduate?

You must apply to graduate through MYCSULB Student Center to be eligible to graduate.

If you have applied to graduate for Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Summer 2021 or Fall 2021 (before the published deadlines), you will be eligible to participate in the 2021 ceremonies and your name will be listed in the program.

Am I eligible to participate in the Commencement ceremonies?

If you have applied to graduate through MYCSULB for Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Summer 2020 or Fall 2020, you will be eligible to participate in the 2020 ceremonies.

If you have applied to graduate through MYCSULB for Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Summer 2021 or Fall 2021, you will be eligible to participate in the 2021 ceremonies.

What does my 'Apply to Graduate' fee pay for and can it be refunded?

A refund will not be issued because the 'Apply to Graduate' fee pays for services already rendered, including the costs of your degree audit as well as creating and shipping your diploma. The fee also partially funds the Commencement ceremony. Commencement is currently scheduled for the week of May 17-23, 2021.

What ceremony do I go to if I’m graduating in December?

If you are a Fall 2019 graduate, you are eligible to participate in the 2020 ceremonies and your name would be listed in either of the published 2019 or 2020 programs (as long as you applied to graduate by the appropriate deadline).

If you are a Fall 2020 graduate, you will be eligible to participate in either the 2020 or 2021 ceremonies and your name will be listed in the either program (as long as you applied to graduate by the appropriate deadline).

If you are a Fall 2021 candidate, you will be eligible to participate in either the 2021 or 2022 ceremonies and your name will be listed in either program (as long as you applied to graduate by the appropriate deadline).

How do I get my name in the program?

If you have applied to graduate for Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Summer 2021 or Fall 2021 before March 1st, 2021, you will be eligible to participate in the 2021 ceremonies and your name will be listed in the program.

The 2020 Graduate Recognition Programs have been published and are available under the College Recognition section on the Commencement homepage.

Will my name be announced during the ceremony?

Yes, every graduate will have their name read as they cross the stage, regardless of whether it is listed in the program.

What if I no longer check my csulb.edu email account?

Seniors, did you know that your @student.csulb.edu email address expires 1 year after graduation?  Update your contact information on the Student Alumni page with your non-student email address to stay connected on Commencement related activities.

To ensure continued communication with the class of 2020, we have extended student email accounts for six additional months. 

How do I know if I am graduating with honors?

GPA honors are not recognized at the ceremony (GPAs are not calculated until your degree has been granted, several weeks after the end of the semester.) If you have graduated prior to the ceremony and know your final GPA, you can purchase an honor cord at the University Bookstore and note your honor level through personalized grad announcements (also available through the Bookstore).

To inquire about honors within a major, contact your commencement coordinator.

How do I get my cap and gown?

The website is up and taking orders. There are 5 different special grad packages online that offer special savings and those will continue throughout the year. There is no deadline for purchasing caps and gowns. Any orders placed now are shipped to the customer directly.

Any regalia returns must be handled through Balfour. You can contact them via email or by phone 1-800-BALFOUR (800-225-3687).

Do I need to return my cap and gown?

New this year! Cap and gown sets will not be available as rentals so if you purchased yours through the Bookstore, they are yours to keep.

What should I do with my grad announcements?

For personalized graduation announcements, it is recommended to avoid any detailed ceremony information at this time or simply wait and order announcements later when new ceremony details are released.

How many tickets do I get and how do I pick them up?

The University Bookstore Ticket Distribution Event has been postponed until a new commencement date has been announced.

How do I get my diploma?

Diplomas are not distributed at Commencement. The diplomas themselves are issued by the University after verification has been made that all degree requirements have been completed and after the diploma document is specially inscribed for the graduate.

Your diploma will not automatically be mailed to you. The Office of Enrollment Services (562.985.5471) will send an e-mail when your diploma is available (approximately 4-8 weeks after your degree has been granted).

Diploma frames are available through the University Bookstore, you may call them at 562.985.5093.

Who can I call for more information?

Each college is responsible for the logistical coordination of its own ceremony. For information regarding your college's ceremony, please contact the appropriate coordinator.