View of thousands of graduates and family members during commencement in an areana

Information for Graduating Students

Graduation Requirements and Honors


To graduate, students must submit an application for graduation via NEST, successfully complete all undergraduate or graduate program requirements by the end of the graduation term/semester, and the degree must be conferred by the Office of the Registrar on the designated conferment date.

If you have questions concerning academic issues relative to your degree, graduate application or teacher certification, please visit Apply for Graduation or email the Office of the Registrar at

Financial Clearances

You must meet all financial obligations prior to receiving your diploma or final transcripts. Financial obligations include, but are not limited to tuition, room, board, course fees, parking fines, library fines, residence hall fines and any special fees or fines charged to your account.

Please review your account summary via NEST for payment methods. For information concerning debt associated with:

  • Parking: Please contact Parking Services (located in the Red Hawk Deck) at 973-655-7580 or see the Parking Services website.
  • Sprague Library: Please call 973-655-4298.
  • Room and Board: Please contact Residence Life at 973-655-5188.

For all other financial obligations contact Red Hawk Central at 973-655-7600 for support.

If you received federal loans, you will need to make arrangements for repayment. Please visit the Student Loan Exit Counseling and Repayment web page.

Graduation Fee

A one-time non-refundable $95.00 University fee will be assessed to degree candidates for administrative costs related to your diploma. There is no fee assessed to attend Commencement.

Graduate with Honors

Earning a bachelor’s degree with honors is a tremendous accomplishment! Students who earn this distinction may wear a gold tassel on their cap at Commencement.

Honors Eligibility

Undergraduate students who have completed a minimum of 51 undergraduate credits taken at Montclair by the end of the semester prior to their commencement will be recognized for graduation honors.

School of Nursing students who have completed a minimum of 32 undergraduate credits at Montclair by the end of the semester prior to their commencement are recognized for graduation honors.

Grades of “A” through “D-” must be received for a minimum of 48 of these 51 credits.

  • Cumulative GPA of 3.700 – 3.799 cum laude
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.800 – 3.899 magna cum laude
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.900 – 4.000 summa cum laude

For recognition of January 2024 candidates at Commencement, the honors designation will be based upon the student’s cumulative grade point average as of the Summer 2023 term.

Please note that this calculation is for Commencement program recognition only, and will not determine official honors. The actual awarding of honors will be based on academic statistics earned at the conclusion of the Fall 2023/Winter 2024 semester, when the degree is conferred.

Honors Tassel

Undergraduate honors tassels will be distributed beginning December 12. See Commencement Item Pickup below for more information.

Graduates – Doctoral and Masters

Graduate students do not graduate with honors, such as cum laude, magna cum laude or summa cum laude.

The Graduate School is host to the Alpha Kappa Chapter of Alpha Epsilon Lambda Honor Society for Graduate Students.

Students who meet minimum requirements are invited to apply for membership into the Alpha Epsilon Lambda Honor Society.

The invitation requires a completed application, resume, and a membership fee.

Qualifications for membership are:

  • Academic achievement in the top 20th percentile of the member’s college in which their degree program resides.
  • Successful completion of 18 graduate credits and active matriculation in a degree program.
  • Demonstration of leadership through involvement in on-campus or off-campus activities while a graduate student.

Graduate Students who were inducted into AEL may wear their honor cord and pin to Commencement.

Students who have not received their honor cords or pins should email The Graduate School at

For more information, please visit the AEL website or email

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Post-Graduation Survey

Prior to registering for commencement, you must complete the post-graduation survey. The survey is designed to collect feedback about your experience while studying at Montclair State as well as your post-graduation plans. (Learn more about this survey) To access the survey, log in using your NetID and password. Complete the Survey.

Complete this survey for your chance to win a $25.00 Amazon gift card! Winners will be notified via their Montclair State email address and gift cards will be sent electronically. Winners will need to acknowledge receipt of the email to claim the code, failure to do so within one month of notification will result in forfeiture of the prize.

Please Note: Your name will be submitted with your responses. Completing the survey does not guarantee graduation. To check on your graduation application status, you will need to review your Degree Works audit. If you are an August 2022, January 2023, or May 2023 graduate, we ask that you resubmit the survey if you indicated that you were still seeking employment or still researching continuing education programs at the time of graduation, or if your post-graduation plans have since changed. If you submitted any other outcome, you do not need to complete the survey again at this time. If you have any questions, please send an email to

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Class Gift and Commencement Messages

Each year, our graduating class participates in a proud Class Gift tradition where members of the class invest in the University by supporting areas of Montclair State University that are most important to them. We invite the Class of 2024 to come together to show your support.

Your gift will pay it forward for future Red Hawks and kick-start your philanthropic connection to Montclair.

All gifts to Montclair count! Make your gift to any area of campus you feel most passionate about – such as the Emergency Book Fund, The Red Hawk Pantry, your school or college, The Fund for Montclair State or athletic program.

Commemorate your class year! Make a gift of at least $20.24 and you’ll receive your Montclair State University Alumni Medallion to wear over your commencement robe.

For a gift of $40, celebrate this milestone with your family, friends and colleagues by having your message displayed on the screen at the commencement ceremony you will be participating in. The final day to submit a commencement message for the Monday, January 8, 2024 Commencement is December 13, 2023 at 2:00 PM.

How do I get my Alumni Medallion?
Alumni medallions will be available for pick-up on Tuesday, November 28 in the Student Center lobby between 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Alumni medallions will also be available for pick-up at the Graduation Fair on Tuesday, December 12 between 10:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. in the Student Center Ballrooms. Graduates can also arrange to pick up their medallion in the Overlook Corporate Center, 150 Clove Road, Little Fall, NJ between 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Medallions can also be mailed to those who cannot pick it up. The last day we will mail the medallions is Friday, December 22. Any gifts made after that date will have to arrange to pick up medallions at Overlook between January 2 – 5, 2024. Please contact James Stewart at or 973-655-5328 to finalize options to get your medallion for the January 8 commencement ceremony.

Every student at Montclair has benefitted from donor generosity to areas of academic support, emergency funding for students and overall priorities to boost students’ success every day. Thank you for paying it forward!

For more information, please contact James Stewart, Associate Director of Annual Giving at 973-655-5328 or

Class of 2024 Gift

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Regalia is required for all students participating in Commencement and must be purchased in advance of the ceremony. Regalia will not be available for purchase at Commencement.

This year every graduating student will receive a Montclair State University Zipper Pull in their regalia package. Attach the zipper pull to your regalia to show off your Montclair pride at Commencement! After Commencement, you can fit on your key chain, jacket, gym bag, or suitcase, bringing your love of Montclair everywhere you go.

Please review package options and ordering deadlines below:

Candidates for Bachelor’s Degree:

  • Bachelor’s regalia is black in color and includes cap, gown and tassel. $71.95
  • Bachelor’s regalia is for purchase only
  • All Bachelor’s regalia orders will ship your to residence.


  • November 30, 2023 – DEADLINE for Bachelor Orders to be shipped to your residence ($15.95 shipping fee)

Candidates for Master’s Degree:

  • Master’s regalia is red in color and includes cap, gown, hood and tassel. $95.95
  • Master’s regalia is for purchase only
  • All Master’s regalia orders will ship to your residence.


  • November 30, 2023 – DEADLINE for Master Orders to be shipped to your residence ($15.95 shipping fee)

Candidates for Doctoral Degree:

  • Doctoral regalia is red in color, faced down the front with black velvet, with three bars of the same across the sleeves; includes tam (cap), gown, hood and tassel.
  • Doctoral regalia may be purchased or rented
  • Shipping options are listed below depending on the option.

Option 1: Purchase

  • Fine Quality Custom Package: Includes gown, hood and a custom tam. Designed for those going into academia. $1046.00
  • Deadline to order option 1 is November 3, 2023.
  • Ship to home only. Please allow 8 weeks for delivery.

Option 2: Purchase and Rental

  • Purchase a custom tam and hood. Rent only the gown. $389.00
  • Deadline to order option 2 is November 3, 2023.
  • Ship to University Bookstore only.
  • Rental gown must be returned to the bookstore at the conclusion of Commencement.

Option 3: Rental

  • Rental Package: Includes a rental gown, hood, and a souvenir tam (students will keep the souvenir tam) $167.00
  • Deadline to order option 3 is November 3, 2023.
  • Ship to University Bookstore only.
  • Rental gown and hood must be returned to the bookstore at the conclusion of Commencement.

*Important: Please note the difference between a custom tam and souvenir tam
Custom Tam – Fidelio Velvet, 2 Button Gold Silky Tassel, Custom Fit (See products page for pictures)
Souvenir Tam – Matinee Velvet, Regular Old Gold Tassel, one size fits all (See products page for pictures)

For any regalia related questions, please email

Order Regalia Here

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Commencement Registration and Guest Tickets


Commencement registration is managed in the MarchingOrder system. MarchingOrder provides students an opportunity to register, record their name for correct pronunciation at Commencement, request guest tickets and indicate any accessible accommodations needed. Please review all questions carefully when registering.

If you plan to attend Commencement, you must register in advance. Registration will be open for Winter Commencement on Monday, October 16, 2023. Graduates will receive an email from, sent to their Montclair State University email account, with instructions on how to register. Registration will close on Tuesday, November 28, 2023, 11:55 p.m.

Instructions on how to register:

  1. Click on the link to the MarchingOrder registration system that was sent to your MSU email address from “”to start the registration process.
  2. If you didn’t receive the email, go to MarchingOrder, click on “New Users”, and enter your email address. You will receive an email prompting you to create a new password to access the site. You must enter your Montclair email using the format. Entering will not be accepted by the system.
  3. Log in and complete the registration process and click “Submit”.
  4. You may return to the site at any time by going to MarchingOrder and using your email address and newly created password.

Guest Tickets

MarchingOrder will allow students to request guest tickets. All graduates are guaranteed up to eight (8) tickets each with the option to be added to a waitlist for additional tickets, should they become available. Please request only as many tickets as you need. We don’t want tickets to go unused when others may need them.

Graduates do not need a ticket.

Tickets will be distributed beginning December 12. See Commencement Item Pickup below for more information.

Guest Ticket Waitlist

If you would like to be added to the guest ticket waitlist, please make sure to select this option within your MarchingOrder registration. Waitlist guest ticket requests are NOT guaranteed. After registration for graduation closes, you will be emailed should additional tickets become available.

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Commencement Item Pickup

Students, faculty, and staff can pickup their essential Commencement items on December 12!

Tuesday, December 12, 2023, 10:00-6:30 p.m. in the Student Center Ballrooms

Pick Up Your Important Commencement Items:

  • Guest Tickets
  • Undergraduate Honors Tassels
  • Ceremony Name Reader Cards (needed when graduates walk across the stage at Commencement)
  • Ceremony and Prudential Center logistical information
  • Doctoral rental regalia will be available for pickup (Note: All master’s and bachelor’s regalia packages will be shipped to home)
  • Faculty and staff required event credentials
  • Faculty and Staff rental regalia

Don’t forget to bring a photo ID!

Students, faculty, and staff who cannot attend, you may authorize a friend or family member to pick up the items on your behalf.

  • Please complete the Graduation Fair Designated Pick-Up Contact form, and we will release Commencement items to someone other than the graduate. Kindly note the contact designated MUST show a photo ID before we release your items.
  • IMPORTANT: By submitting this form, you authorize Montclair State University to release all Commencement items to your designated contact and assume all responsibility for any loss or damage that may occur after that. The University will not replace Commencement items. We will ONLY release items once the authorization form is submitted.

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Commencement Student Speakers

Students’ voices at Commencement are extremely important as we honor our graduates and their families. The Commencement student speaker’s role is to celebrate their peers’ achievements and inspire them to continue on the path to success.

Graduate and Undergraduate students who are interested in becoming the student speaker for Winter Commencement can participate in their college’s speaker selection committee application process.

If you have additional questions about the Commencement speaker process, please contact

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Arrival Times, Entrance Tower, and Security Screening

Prudential Center doors will open at 8:00 a.m. Graduates must arrive by 8:30 a.m. and Graduate Processional will begin at 9:40 a.m.

IMPORTANT TRAVEL ADVISORY: We anticipate heavier-than-normal traffic in and around the Prudential Center. Plan to allow ample time for traffic, parking, and security screening at the venue.

Prudential Center Entrance

Graduates enter Prudential Center through the M & M’s Tower (corner of Mulberry and Lafayette Street)

Please view or print the Prudential Center Entrance Diagram

Security Screening

  • All graduates will be subject to a courteous screening via a walk-through metal detector to ensure the highest level of safety and security. Attendees will be required to place their bags, cell phones, keys and all metal objects on the security table prior to walking through the metal detector.
  • Limit any personal items you bring, as they must always remain on you. You cannot leave belongings in the graduate lineup or seating areas. Graduates can carry small handbags up to 10”x10” for personal items. Anything larger, including backpacks, is not allowed.

The following items are prohibited at Prudential Center:

  • Alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs
  • Balloons, signs, banners, beach balls, horns, noisemakers
  • Laser pointers, flashlights, fireworks, or balls of any kind
  • Selfie sticks
  • Outside Food/ Beverages

For a full list of prohibited items, please visit Prudential Center Arena Policy.

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Ceremony Overview and Decorum

Ceremony Overview

  • Upon entry, event staff will direct graduates to check-in and line-up areas. Guests and children are not permitted in the graduate line-up or seating areas.
  • Graduate Processional begins 20 minutes before the ceremony start time so please plan accordingly and arrive on time.
  • The ceremony will take approximately 3 hours.
  • If graduates and guests wish to take pictures outside Prudential Center, we strongly suggest arriving early to take photos before the ceremony.
  • Set up a meeting location: before the ceremony begins, plan a spot where you and your guests will meet after the ceremony.


Commencement is a dignified ceremony marking a special time of achievement and accomplishment. The ceremony is marked by dignity and seriousness as the conferring of degrees signifies long, hard work on the part of everyone involved including students, faculty members, administrators, family members and friends. Excitement, joy and enthusiasm are expected and welcome!

However, we ask that all of our graduates conduct themselves in an appropriate manner that demonstrates respect toward their fellow graduates, guests, and the speakers on stage. We ask for your commitment to help ensure the ceremonies are a meaningful experience for all by courteously bearing in mind the rights and feelings of all the participants and guests.

  • The University expects all graduates to remain in the arena until all degrees have been conferred and the platform party has departed. We ask that you be respectful to all graduates attending Commencement. Event staff will cue you to begin the recessional from the arena.
  • Arrive at the designated graduate arrival time.
  • Follow all instructions by event staff. They are here to assist you and ensure the ceremony is a meaningful experience.
  • Remain at your seat for the entire ceremony unless directed by event staff. Movement on the floor where graduates are seated is distracting to guests and your fellow graduates, and it is disrespectful to the speakers on stage.
  • Silence all electronic devices during the ceremony as a courtesy to those around you.
  • Do not bring prohibited items (i.e. air horns, food, alcoholic beverages, noisemakers, balloons, beach balls). For a full list of prohibited items, please visit Prudential Center Arena Policy

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Directions and Transportation

IMPORTANT TRAVEL ADVISORY: We anticipate heavier-than-normal traffic in and around the Prudential Center. Plan to allow ample time for traffic, parking, and security screening at the venue.

Prudential Center
25 Lafayette Street
Newark, NJ 07102

We strongly suggest that guests use public transportation, rideshare services, or carpool with family and friends. Highways surrounding the arena include 280, 78, NJ Turnpike, 1 & 9, 21, 22, Garden State Parkway, 80, and NJ 3. For detailed driving directions, please visit the Prudential Center Directions website.

Public Transportation

Prudential Center is located in downtown Newark, just two blocks from Newark Penn Station, and is also connected to the Newark Broad Street Station by frequent, convenient bus and light-rail service.

Please visit the Prudential Center Public Transportation website for more information to plan your trip.


Parking will be available at lots and garages surrounding Prudential Center. Costs are determined by each parking facility. Please visit the Prudential Center Parking website for a detailed map and directions to these locations.

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Live Stream Links

The ceremony will be live streamed in English and Spanish. Be sure to share the links with family and friends.

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Important Reminders for Graduates

Please continue to check your Montclair State email address and visit the Commencement website for updated information.

  • Don’t forget your Ceremony Name Reader Card! Graduates will need a reader card when they walk across the stage during the ceremony. Do not crumble or write on the reader card.
  • Graduates must wear their regalia (cap, gown, hood and tassel) and consider wearing flat, comfortable shoes as they will walk throughout the arena for line up, the Graduate Processional, and across the stage during the ceremony.
  • Arrive at the designated graduate arrival time for your ceremony. Graduate Processional begins 20 minutes prior to the ceremony start time.
  • We strongly encourage graduates to eat before arriving at the Prudential Center, as the concession stands are not accessible from the student line-up area.
  • Photos outside Prudential Center: if graduates and guests wish to take pictures outside Prudential Center, we strongly suggest arriving early to take photos before the ceremony.
  • Before the ceremony begins, plan a location where you and your guests will meet after the ceremony. After the ceremony, Prudential Center requests that all guests and graduates vacate the building.
  • All guests must have an authorized ticket to enter Prudential Center. Graduates do not need a ticket. Seating is heneral admission and will be on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • All ceremonies will be livestreamed.
  • Accessible Accommodations: Any graduate who needs accessible accommodations may contact Francesca Leite at

Please continue to check your Montclair State email address and visit the Commencement website for updated information.

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