Apply for your Degree/Certificate

How to Graduate

Graduation is not automatic. If you are earning a degree or certificate, you must Apply for Graduation

Step 1: Prepare for Graduation

Schedule an appointment to meet with a counselor to develop your educational plan for the specific degree, certificate, and/or general education pattern you are pursuing. Students can meet with their counselor in EOPS, DSPS, STAR/TRIO, or General Counseling Office.

If you have attended a college or university outside of the San Diego Community College District, please review the steps to submit and evaluate transcripts prior to applying for graduation. 

Step 2: Apply for Graduation

Students may apply for graduation 1 to 2 semesters in advance as long as they will complete requirements by the end of the semester.

  • Apply for graduation though your MySDCCD portal. Under "My Academics" -> "Apply for Graduation". Be sure to click submit at the end!
  • Please note that if you do not see your degree and/or certificate displayed, please meet with a counselor.
  • View your graduation status under "My Academics" -> "View Graduation Status".

Spring & Summer 2024 applications open November 6, 2023.

Fall 2024 applications open April 29, 2024.

Deadlines to apply for graduation vary from year to year. All Deadlines are final.

View graduation deadlines

Step 3: RSVP to the Graduate Commencement Ceremony

  • Your participation in the Commencement Ceremony is OPTIONAL for you to receive your degree or certificate.
  • Students who have applied for graduation within the academic year will receive an email invitation to the ceremony, including the link to RSVP.
  • You must RSVP if you wish participate in the Commencement Ceremony.
  • Note: Participation in the ceremony does not guarantee your application for graduation will be approved.
  • If you need assistance, contact the Mesa Evaluations Office at with your name and student User ID number.

Step 4: Receive your diploma in the mail

You will not receive your diploma at the Commencement Ceremony.

Diplomas for summer, fall, and spring graduates are mailed directly to the students after ALL coursework requirements for your degree or certificate are completed successfully.

  • All financial holds must be cleared on your student account before your diploma can be mailed. 
  • Diplomas are mailed to the address listed on mySDCCD typically 8 weeks after the end of the semester. When will I receive my diploma?
  • Make sure your mailing address and email is up to date. You can update your mailing address on mySDCCD. Information updated after applying for graduation should be emailed to Mesa Evaluations. 
  • Degrees and/or Certificates of Achievements will be posted on official transcripts in the following months:
    • Fall Graduates: End of January
    • Spring Graduates: End of June
    • Summer Graduates: End of September

Graduating with Honors

Graduation with honors distinction is based upon all coursework that is associate degree and lower division baccalaureate degree applicable or coursework applicable to the certificate of achievement. If eligible, an honors notation is placed on the student's official transcript and diploma.

  • Honors is granted to students who achieve an overall 3.5 GPA.
  • High Honors is granted to students who achieve an overall 3.75 GPA.
  • Highest Honors is granted to students who achieve an overall 4.0 GPA.

Associate Degree Honors, 3.5-4.0 GPA: Gold Tassel, Gold Cord

Certificate of Achievement Honors, 3.5-4.0: GPA White Tassel, White Cord.

Catalog Rights

Students who maintain continuous enrollment may choose to graduate under the college catalog in effect at the time they began their studies in a California Community College, California State University, or University of California campus, or under the catalog in effect at the time of graduation.

Continuous enrollment is defined as attendance in one semester or two quarters (excluding summer) within a calendar year in the CSU, UC, or California Community College System.

Certification of a student's completion of CSU general education requirements or the Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) is not a graduation requirement. Therefore, students do not have catalog rights to a certification pattern used by a certifying institution or a CSU or UC campus.