Graduate Checklist Header Photo

1. Apply to Graduate

Before participating in the commencement exercises, you must apply to graduate through SeaNet. Students who applied for graduation and completed all degree requirements during the spring semester are eligible to participate in the spring commencement exercises. The graduation application deadline to participate in spring commencement exercises is March 20, 2023. Contact the Office of the Registrar at 910.962.3125 if you have questions about your eligibility.

Apply to Graduate

2. Complete your Commencement Registration

Spring 2023 graduates: You will gain access to the MarchingOrder system in mid February 2023.

Summer and Fall 2023 graduates: You will gain access to the MarchingOrder system in October 2023.

You will use this account to register for the in-person ceremony associated with your school or college, claim guest tickets, and provide phonetic information to ensure your name is read correctly during your ceremony. You can also submit any accommodation requests through MarchingOrder.

Once you activate your Commencement Registration account, you can log in here to make any adjustments or updates.

RSVP for Commencement

3. Order your Cap and Gown

All graduates have the opportunity to order official regalia, announcements, and other graduation merchandise through the Herff Jones ordering website.

Main campus students pay the commencement fee each semester, which covers the cost of regalia. Main Campus students are only charged the shipping fee when placing their order.

Distance education and extension students are not charged a Commencement student fee each semester. Therefore, distance/extension students who choose to participate in Commencement will need to purchase their regalia.

If you have access to MarchingOrder but do not have access to the regalia site, please email

Order Regalia

4. Check your Financial Status

As you prepare to graduate, make sure that you do not have any outstanding balances with the university by checking your E-Bill. All payments must be paid to the university before you can receive your official UNCW diploma in the mail. Perkins loan recipients will need to complete their mandatory exit counseling prior to graduation. Federal loan recipients will need to complete their Federal Direct Loan Exit Counseling at If you have questions regarding financial aid, join the Chat Tuesday Live Chats or contact your financial aid advisor

Check your E-Bill

5. Complete the First Destination Survey

Let us know where you are headed after UNCW by completing the First Destination Survey. We want to know if you have secured employment, are planning to pursue more education, or are still figuring out your next steps. Remember that the UNCW Career Center is available to you as a resource - even as an alum!

Complete the Survey

6. Pre-Register for your Official Commencement Photographs

Professional photographers from GradImages will take individual photographs of each graduate during their Commencement ceremony. Participants will receive a free photo proof and can order copies of their photograph directly from GradImages.

Pre-Register and Save 20%

You may register your email and up to 6 emails of loved ones who would like to share in your accomplishment by viewing and ordering photos.

Individuals who do not receive a photo proof within two weeks of the ceremony should contact GradImages at 800.261.2576 or via email at

7. Pick Up Your Name Card

All graduates must pick up their name card to participate in the commencement exercises. Name card pick-up will take place during the Taking Flight: Commencement Kickoff and Celebration that will take place during the week leading up to commencement. Dates and times for Taking Flight will be released in March.

Distance Education students are not required to travel to Wilmington for the Taking Flight event. Distance Education students are able to pick up their name card starting 1 hour prior to their assigned ceremony in Hanover Gym (Hanover Hall). 

8. Attend your Commencement Exercise

Graduates should report to Hanover Gym (Hanover Hallno less than 45 minutes prior to their ceremony. Graduates who arrive after this time may not be permitted to participate in the ceremony. 

9. Get Ready to Celebrate!

We are so excited to celebrate your academic accomplishments! Use the hashtag #UNCWAlumni to share photos of your cap and gown and of your commencement celebrations as you prepare for Commencement Day.

10. Receive your Diploma

Undergraduate and graduate diplomas are ordered by the Office of the Registrar within eight weeks of commencement. Diplomas are mailed to the address the graduate provides on their graduation application. If the address needs to be updated, the graduate must notify to have their address updated. Updating the address in SeaNet will not change the diploma mailing address.

Starting with Summer 2018 graduates, the University of North Carolina at Wilmington is partnering with our vendor Parchment to provide a new service for graduates, digital diplomas. A Digital Diploma is an official signed and certified PDF of your diploma, secured with a Blue Ribbon Security Certificate. The digital diploma is issued to the graduate's personal email address. Digital diplomas will not be issued to UNCW email addresses. Digital diplomas are only issued to graduates' personal email addresses so that the diploma is available to them in perpetuity. UNCW email addresses expire after graduating from the University.