Graduation (Completion) vs. Commencement

Graduation (Completion) is the certified completion of your diploma/degree program requirements.  It is not a ceremony.  When you apply for completion, you are not registering for any ceremony.

Commencement is the symbolic ceremony that marks your academic achievement.  It is an opportunity for you, your family and friends and WTCC to celebrate your achievement.  Participation is not required. You must order and pay for regalia by the posted deadlines in order to participate in the commencement ceremony.  

Before Commencement Day: 

Order your regalia (cap and gown). Ordering reserves your seat for the ceremony. See Fall and Spring semester tabs (on the left menu) for ordering deadlines. Regalia is not available for students who miss the deadline and used or borrowed regalia is not permitted.

You will be given admission tickets for guests when you pick up your ordered regalia. Amount of admission tickets are determined after each regalia deadline.

Do children need admission tickets? Yes, every guest including children, regardless of age must have an admission ticket.

Do graduates need admission tickets to gain entrance? No, graduates do not need a ticket.

Can a graduate request additional tickets? No, there is no option for additional tickets.

Honor Cords

Obtain a SPECIAL HONORS CORD OR STOLE if you will be wearing one with your regalia, as follows:

Arrange for special accommodations if you have a disability or if a guest who will be attending your commencement has a disability. Contact Disability Support Services: 919-866-5669 (Voice) or 919-324-1508 (Sorenson Video Phone) before regalia pickup day.

We want to hear about your future plans

Complete our brief FIRST DESTINATION OUTCOMES survey – you will receive a link via email – within 30 days of your completion date. Wake Tech is proud of its graduates and interested in their plans for the future! Contact [email protected] or call 919-866-5695 if you have questions about the survey – or if you would like assistance with your job search!

On Commencement Day:

  • Arrive early – at least 1 hour before the ceremony start time to allow for check-in and lineup. There is no rehearsal, and no one will be allowed to join the processional line once it starts. Bring your photo ID to ensure quick check-in!
  • Dress appropriately in dressy or business casual clothing underneath your regalia. Graduates without proper attire will not be allowed to participate.
  • Do not bring personal belongings other than your regalia. Storage is not available.
  • Act appropriately. Graduates or guests whose behavior detracts from the dignity and importance of the occasion will not be allowed to participate.  
  • Check in on arrival and hold on to the “name call card” that you will be given. Keep up with your card; you’ll need it to give to the Reader who will call your name as you walk across the stage. The color of the card will tell you your division (according to your major) and where to get in line. If you have more than one major, choose one for the ceremony.    
  • Be seated with your division and follow directions from marshals.
  • Professional photographs will be taken of each graduate on stage and made available for purchase after commencement. Graduates will receive a free color proof with a password for viewing photos online. They can arrange to receive email notification when photos are posted by visiting and preregistering. Students who do not receive a proof within one week should contact [email protected] or call 1-800-722-7033. Families and guests may take photographs after the ceremony; no photos are allowed during graduation.  
  • Safety and security measures will include the monitoring of all items entering the facility. No one will be permitted to enter with the following items:
    • Balloons
    • Noise Makers
    • Baby strollers
    • Large Camera bags, book bags, backpacks, briefcases, etc.
    • Gifts or packages of any kind 
    • Food or drink
    • Other items deemed inadmissible by security personnel 

After Commencement Day:

Fall 2018 degrees, diplomas and certificates will be available for pickup beginning:  February 11, 2019

Spring 2019 degrees, diplomas and certificates will be available for pickup beginning:  June 24, 2019

 Summer 2019 degrees, diplomas and certificates will be available for pickup beginning: September 16, 2019

  • Graduates will be reminded via their Wake Tech student email account
  • Students are encouraged to pick up as soon as available
  • Location: Southern Wake Campus, Student Services Building (SL 243A), Registration & Records Office
  • Hours: Mondays-Thursdays: 8am-6pm and Fridays: 8am-5pm
  • Photo ID is required at time of pickup


Questions/Registrar Helpline 919-866-5700
Paula Roberts, Assistant Registrar: 919-866-5711
Deborah Whitley, Student Records Coordinator: 919-866-5710