Prince William Sound Community College

Study in Alaska with No Out of State Tuition at PWSCC
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Graduation Policies

To be eligible for graduation at the end of a given semester, a student must be formally admitted to the degree or certificate program and
Application-for-graduation (243.4 KiB)

PWSCC issues diplomas once a year; in May after the spring semester.

Application for Graduation deadlines are posted on our academic calendar.

If the student meets all requirements by the end of the semester, the certificate or degree is awarded after completion of the semester. Students are held responsible for meeting all academic regulations and degree/certificate requirements.

Occupational endorsement certificates are awarded by the offering academic unit, rather than at commencement. Students should check with their advisors to determine what arrangements are followed.

Names of students receiving undergraduate certificates and degrees appear in the commencement program in the spring and are released to the media unless a directory hold has been placed on the student account.

Students who apply for graduation and who do not complete their degree/certificate requirements by the end of the semester in which they have been approved to graduate must reapply for graduation and pay another application fee.


Students may complete certificate or degree requirements in the fall, spring, or summer semesters. All students who have earned certificates and degrees during the academic year will be invited to participate in the annual commencement program at the end of spring semester.

Prior to the commencement ceremony, students MUST apply for graduation. To be eligible for graduation, a student must submit an Application for Graduation and a $20 fee to the Registration Office.

For more information on PWSCC’s commencement program and to apply for graduation, please visit our website at or our Student Services Department at 907.834.1600.


Students may choose from either of two catalogs to determine their graduation requirements—the catalog in effect when formally admitted to a program, or the catalog in effect during the semester of graduation.  If the requirements for an associate degree as specified in the entry level catalog are not met within 5 years of formal acceptance into the program, that program will expire and the student must reapply for admission and meet the requirements in effect at the time of formal acceptance.


To review current progress toward degree completion, a student may file a request for a Degree Checklist at any time.  A final checklist request must be filed the semester before graduation.


The Associate of Arts degree is intended to provide the student with the general education necessary to undertake baccalaureate work.  Due to its general intent, only one A.A. degree may be earned per student.

The Associate of Applied Science degree is intended to provide specialized education.  Therefore, it does include a major specialty, and students may earn more than one A.A.S. degree.

To receive a second Associate of Applied Science degree, a student must complete a minimum of 12 resident hours beyond the first associate degree, as well as all requirements for the second major.  As long as the additional 12-hour requirement has been met, two (2) degrees may be awarded in the same semester.

Graduating with Honors
  • Cum Laude 3.50 to 3.79
  • Magna Cum Laude 3.80 to 3.99
  • Summa Cum Laude 4.00

To be eligible to graduate with honors, associate’s degree-seeking students must first earn a cumulative GPA of 3.50 or higher in all college work attempted at PWSCC.

A transfer student who is earning an associate’s degree must complete a minimum of 15 resident credits with academic letter grades to be eligible to graduate with honors. All transfer students must have a cumulative GPA of 3.50 or higher in all college work attempted both at PWSCC and at all other accredited institutions attended and for all courses used to fulfill the degree program in order to graduate with honors.

At PWSCC, graduation with honors represents the students’ entire academic history. All grades and credits earned will be included in determining eligibility to graduate with honors (Ds, Fs, retaken courses, courses lost in academic bankruptcy, etc). In addition, a student transferring coursework and grades from an international institution must have a minimum of 70% of their coursework submitted with letter grades to be eligible to graduate with honors.

Associate degree students who graduate with honors in summer, fall, or spring will be recognized in the annual commencement program and awarded gold honor cords to wear at the May commencement ceremony. Final grades will be verified prior to noting graduation honors on the diploma or the official transcript.

Please note: The GPA on your transcript is not your final GPA for honors.

All courses are used in determining final GPA for awarding of honors; this includes courses you have retaken and transfer courses which did not transfer in.

About Your Diploma

Approximately 4-6 weeks after graduation your diploma will receive be mailed to you address listed on your graduation application

More Than One Degree

Students who graduate with more than one degree will receive a separate diploma for each degree awarded.

Outstanding Balances

Students must satisfy all unpaid student account balances through the PWSCC Business Office before their diploma will be released.

Name on Diploma

The name on your diploma will be the official name on file with the college at the time of printing. Diplomas will be printed with first name, middle initial, last name; unless specifically indicated otherwise by the student. PWSCC does not print nicknames on diplomas, but will print full middle and maiden names upon request.

Replacement Diplomas

You may order a replacement if your original diploma has been lost or damaged. Complete and return Application for Replacement Diploma form with $25 fee. Processing time is 7-10 days beginning the day Registrar office receives request and processed Monday through Friday during normal business hours, except holidays and during winter break.

All replacement diplomas will be printed with current University President, Chancellor, and Chair of the Board of Regents signatures and will have the words “Replacement Diploma issued (date)” printed under the university seal.

Graduates wishing to order a replacement diploma for a change of name must submit Request-for-change (305.7 KiB) along with documentation.

At the end of one year, any unclaimed/returned diplomas will be shredded. Students should contact Registrar’s Office for current procedures for reprinting a shredded diploma.