Graduation & CommencementGraduation & Commencement

Graduation & Commencement

The College requires every student to enroll in a prescribed curriculum and to pursue this curriculum through a carefully planned sequence of courses that will lead to successful completion of the academic program and the awarding of the appropriate baccalaureate degree.

Each student must attempt to register for required courses before pursuing elective courses in order to concentrate upon the Core of liberal arts subjects which the faculty judges to be basic for a college education. After primary attention has been given to completion of required Core courses, each student and advisor should choose elective courses appropriate for the student's academic major or professional interest.

No deviation from the prescribed curriculum will be permitted unless written approval has been secured.

Download the Graduation Application Form

Academic Requirements for Graduation

  • A minimum of 124 credit hours.
  • A minimum 2.0 grade point average (GPA) (Exceptions: Elementary Education and Athletic Training majors should see their division chairs for adjusted requirements.)
  • Completion of the Core Curriculum
  • Completion of the Degree Requirements for the appropriate degree
  • Completion of an approved major program of study
  • Successful completion of an outlined degree program
  • Completion of at least 30 hours taken at the 300 or 400 level
  • Completion at Lees-McRae College of at least one half of the credit hours required for the major program of study
  • Completion of at least 32 of the last 40 semester hours must have been earned at Lees-McRae

A student earning a grade of "F" in any required course in the major course of study must repeat that course. No more than 12 credit hours of coursework in which a grade of "D" has been received may apply toward graduation.

No more than four credit hours of physical education activity courses may count toward graduation.

A student may choose to meet the graduation requirements listed in the College Catalog that was in effect the year the student entered Lees-McRae College or in any subsequent catalog. However, a student may not select graduation requirements from more than one catalog at a time. If the student has been out of residence for more than one academic year, the graduation requirements in effect at the time of re-enrollment at Lees-McRae will apply.

Commencement Excercises

Only students who have completed all requirements for their program(s) of study are eligible for participation in the commencement ceremony. Graduates also must have all accounts paid and must have completed an application for graduation.

Degrees are granted three times during the calendar year - May, August, and December; however, the only commencement ceremony is held in May. Graduates who receive their degrees in August or December are encouraged to participate in the following May ceremony. No matter when the degree is granted, the student must go through the proper application process and pay the appropriate fees to receive the diploma.

Graduation and receipt of a diploma from Lees-McRae is an honor bestowed by the Faculty, Administration, and Board of Trustees; thus, May graduates are required to participate in the baccalaureate services and commencement exercises. The faculty recommends the student for the degree and therefore expects the student to attend the ceremonies to receive the diploma. Award of a degree is duly noted on the official College transcript.

May 2014 Commencement Information

Commencement will be in Tate Lawn Saturday, May 10, 2014 at 11:00 a.m.

Graduation Practice

Practice for Commencement: Friday, May 9 at 2:00 p.m. on Tate Lawn. Rain location is the Williams Physical Education Center. Attendance is mandatory.

Baccalaureate Dinner

Friday, May 9th from 4:30 - 6:30 p.m. in MacDonald Dining Hall. Normally, 300-350 people attend the dinner. In order to maintain a steady flow, doors will open at 4:30 p.m. We hope this will help eliminate longer lines at the buffet. The cost is: $14.00 adults, $7.00 children 6-12 yrs., and free for children 1-5 yrs. Graduates will receive a complimentary ticket for their meal at no cost. Guests must purchase a ticket in advance to attend the dinner. Tickets can be purchased through the Registrar's Office.

Baccalaureate/Hooding Service

Held in Hayes Auditorium at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, May 9. Please wear your academic regalia (gown and hood, no cap) to this service. You will line up for this service at 6:30 p.m. outside of the cafeteria. If it rains, you will line up in MacDonald Dining Hall.

Commencement Ceremony

Commencement begins promptly at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, May 10. Graduates be in Hayes Auditorium by 9:30 a.m. to robe and line-up. Sunday dress beneath academic robes is appropriate.

Disability-Related Needs

The college has reserved parking spaces for guests with mobility impairments; however, the total number of parking spaces is limited. To park in one of these reserved spaces, a valid permit is required. In addition, areas within the seating section have been reserved for wheelchair users.


Parking will be available at the following sites: Chaffee Administration Building, Hayes, Avery, and Williams Physical Education Center parking lots. Signs will be posted for shuttle service at each location. The college has reserved parking spaces for guests with mobility impairments; however, the total number of parking spaces is limited. To park in one of these reserved spaces, a valid permit is required. In addition, areas within the seating section have been reserved for wheelchair users and handicapped individuals. Up to two seats maximum, per graduate, can be reserved for handicapped individuals.


As each graduate is handed his/her diploma, a picture will be taken by a professional photographer. A free color proof will be sent to your current mailing address, including a password for online viewing. You are under no obligation to purchase prints.

To receive an email notification the moment your photos are online, please visit to pre-register. If you do not receive a proof within a week of the ceremony, please contact or call 1-800-722-7033.


Programs will be available on the morning of Commencement. The program lists the name, degree, major, and honors of each graduate.