Stay on track for graduation

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By Crystal Carry

By Crystal Carry

If graduating from RCC is part of your master plan, you need to go through some steps like taking the right classes, getting good grades as well as applying for graduation. The first two steps are well known, but do we all know how or when to apply for graduation?

“There is a common misconception among the RCC student population that an application for graduation should be submitted either in the semester the student plans to graduate or after all requirements are completed,” said Senior Academic Evaluations specialist Lily Golondzinier.RCC student Amber Forst was not for sure when to apply for graduation.”I heard from some of my friends that have applied that applications should be done by November before you want to graduate,” Frost said.TheRCCAdmissions and Records staff wants students to apply for graduation the last fall term they plan on attending RCC so they can work with the students in completing what they need.

“When students apply at the last minute, a lot of the time they end up needing one more course,” Golondzinier said. “Then we have to give them the bad news.”

This past year, 18 percent of all degree applications submitted were canceled due to the lack of one or more classes that could have been added in the winter and spring semesters.

Students who apply earlier in the year get help from Admissions and Records with staying on track towards graduation.

“We keep track every semester so if the student still needs anything, we can send out a letter that says exactly what they need to graduate,” Golondzinier said.

“A letter telling me what I still need to graduate would help out a lot,” Frost said. “That way I could pay more attention to where I want to go after RCC and get ready for my future.”

The application, which is a simple form to fill out, is available at all three campuses at the Admissions and Records office as well as online.

“We just want to know how to spell the students name for the diploma and commencement book and for them to pick a degree,” Golondzinier said.

There is a $5 diploma fee which can be mailed or brought in along with the application and is recorded so the student doesn’t have to pay again until they are awarded.

“We are trying to change the mindset of the college as a whole,” Golondzinier said.

The deadline to participate in the graduation ceremony is April 3. After April 3, applications are still accepted until June 30 but students cannot participate in the ceremony.

“This is a big change so it is going to take awhile to get things set but we are working on spreading the word,” Golondzinier said.

“We hate giving bad news,” Golondzinier said. “Our job is to make it good news, and we need the students help with that.”

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