Commencement Ceremony FAQs

Before the Ceremony

Dates & Deadlines

  • Commencement Application Opens: 2/1/2023.
  • Priority Application Deadline: 4/10/2023. Your name will appear in the commencement program, and guest tickets will be sent to you electronically.
  • Late Application Deadline: 4/27/2023. Your name will NOT appear in the commencement program, and guest tickets (if available) must be picked up at the Arena Box Office.

Do I have to sign up to participate in Commencement?

  • Yes, if you want to participate in Commencement, you must complete the Commencement application on our website. Participation in Commencement is optional.

Application opens on 2/1/2023.

Is there a fee to participate in Commencement?

  • No, there is not a fee to participate in Commencement or to view the event via livestream.

Who is eligible to participate in Commencement?

  • Fall 2022 Graduates
  • Spring 2023 Potential Graduates
  • Summer 2023 Potential Graduates
  • If you have questions about your eligibility , please make an appointment to see your Academic Advisor.

If I participate in Commencement, does it mean I graduated?

  • No, Commencement and graduation are different. Commencement is the ceremony; graduation means a student met all requirements for a degree or certificate.

How do I know which Ceremony to attend?

  • Each participant will be notified via their FW email of their assigned Ceremony time. Requests to alter Ceremony times cannot be honored.

How do I know if I'll be recognized for honors?

  • Candidates recieve honors based on their cumulative GPA at the end of the Fall semester, since all Spring grades will not have been processed prior to the Ceremonies. If you are unsure of your status, please verify with the Office of the Registrar prior to the Ceremonies. Honors designations are not read during the Ceremonies, but will be denoted in the Commencement Program.

What is a Reader Card and where do I get it?

  • A Reader Card must be carried by each participant as they cross the stage. This is how we ensure your name is announced and displayed as you walk across the stage. Commencement Participants are strongly encouraged to pick up their Reader Card at one of the scheduled pickup dates and locations. Click here for pick up times and location(s).

What about photos?

  • Pre-Commencement Photos: There will be a Photo Day on Thursday, May 4th from 8:30am - 5:00pm in the Suncoast Credit Union Arena. Sign-up is required. Sign up here.
  • Commencement Day Photos: Professional photos will be taken as participants cross the stage on May 5th.

What do I need to bring?

How Do I Get My Regalia?

  • Ordering of regalia is done through the FSW Bookstore here.
  • Tuesday, February 7th - 11:00am - 2:00pm - Grad Fair in Bookstore (Lee Campus Only)
  • A photo ID is required to pick up your regalia.
  • Please note: Only FSW-approved regalia will be permitted at Commencement.

Can I decorate my cap?

  • Yes! FSW encourages the expression of individuality by decorating the tops of graduation caps for the Ceremonies. Please use good judgement when decorating. FSW will restrict anything determined as vulgar, obscene or worn in a manner that disrupts school activity.

Commencement Program

Will my name be in the Commencement Program?

  • The names of participants who apply by the priority deadline will be included in the Commencement Program. The names of participants who apply after the priority deadline will NOT be included in the Commencement Program.
  • Students who have placed a confidentiality hold on their records should be aware their name will be withheld from any record releases, including publication in the Commencement Program. Please contact the Office of the Registrar if you would like to update your record.

After The Ceremony

When will I receive my diploma?

  • Diplomas are mailed to your home address on file in your Student Portal approximately 6-8 weeks after the end of each semester.

How do I order a transcript?

Where can I find Alumni Information?

Have Questions?

Contact us at or (239) 489-9040

*Please check this page often as updates will occur as we get closer to the big day.