2020 Commencement Going Virtual

​A note from Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffery, Superintendent/President:

Without a doubt, gra​duation day is the highlight of the year for us, but, most of all, for the students who ha​ve given so much to achieve their​ dreams. That walk across the stage, that diploma often represents not just the hard work and sacrifice of the graduates, but also of their family members and loved on​​es. As Santa Monica College continues to evaluate the public health crisis caused by COVID-19, it has become apparent that it will be impossible to maintain the safety and health of our graduates and guests in a traditional setting, where thousands gather in Corsair Field; therefore we will have a virtual graduation ceremony. The decision was not an easy one to make—we did so because the wellbeing of SMC graduates, employees, and guests is our highest priority. More details on the virtual graduation ceremony are forthcoming. SMC will still produce a beautiful graduation booklet/program to celebrate the success of all our graduates, and that program along with diplomas and certificates, will b​​e mailed to the homes of graduates. And, significantly, graduates who wish to participate in a traditional ceremony will be invited to participate in the 2021 graduation ceremony​​​​​​​​! 

SMC student lead​ers have been invited to work with Enrollment Development to plan the virtual ceremony; their suggestions and feedback will help make the day as meaningful and special as possible.

From email sent to students and​​ college staff​ on April 7.​​​​​

Are you ready to graduate? Did you complete all requirements for your Bachelor of Science in Interaction Design, your Associate degree or Certificate of Achievement? Great! Your next step is to complete our Graduation Petition. Details are provided below.

Graduation Requirements at SMC

Eligibility Requirements

  • Unit Requirements: The B.S. in Interaction Design requires a minimum on 120 CSU applicable units, including lower and upper division general education. All Associate degrees require a minimum of 60 degree-applicable units, including General Education, major requirements, and electives. Certificates of Achievement require a minimum of 12 major-applicable units.
  • Units in Residence at SMC: At least 12 units of coursework must be taken at Santa Monica College.
  • GPA Requirements: A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in degree-applicable coursework. All courses in the major must be completed with a "C" or better.

Major Requirements

  • Major requirement for all degrees and Certificates of Achievement may be found in the Transfer/Counseling Center's Articulation website.

Use of Transfer Credits & Select Test Scores

  • Coursework from regionally accredited colleges and universities is accepted by SMC to fulfill degree and certificate requirements.

  • PDF FileAdvanced Placement and PDF FileCLEP scores can be accepted for credit, with some limitations. Test scores must be submitted directly from the testing center to SMC.

  • Official college transcripts and test scores sent directly by the institution are required. SMC does not accept student-provided documents--even if in a sealed envelope.

Steps to Graduation at SMC

Initial Steps

  • Ensure you have submitted official transcripts and relevant test scores from all institutions attended to the Admissions and Records Office. Note that all transcripts from other schools must be mailed directly to SMC Admissions. Hand carried transcripts will not be accepted.

  • Make an appointment with a counselor to see if you are eligible to graduate. You can also run a Degree Audit check using the SMC educational planning tool called MyEdPlan.

  • Once you determine you are eligible, complete and submit your graduation petition as noted below.

  • You may petition for any degree or certificate for which you qualify (no limit).

Graduation Petition

Once You Submit a Graduation Petition

  • You will receive an email on the status of your petition within 6 weeks after submitting it to the Admissions Office.

  • You will be provided with instructions on how to participate in our annual Commencement Ceremony a few months ahead of the event. In order to participate in the ceremony, you must submit the graduation petition by April 30.

Graduating with Honors

  • Graduation honors are awarded to students who have met all the graduation requirements, who have never been suspended from Santa Monica College, who are not currently on academic or progress probation, and who meet the following GPA qualifications for all degree-applicable coursework.

    • Highest Honors: 4.0 GPA

    • High Honors: 3.70 to 3.99 GPA

    • Honors: 3.0 to 3.69 GPA

  • Graduation honors will be annotated on your SMC transcript and your diploma.

Congratulations! You Are a College Graduate

  • Transcripts: Once the Admissions & Records Office has verified you completed all degree/certificate requirements, your official Santa Monica College transcripts will be annotated with the degree/certificate and major you completed. This annotation will appear on all transcripts we generate.

  • Diplomas: Will be mailed to you within 12-16 weeks after the appropriate filing period. Only one diploma (per major) will be provided to you at no cost. If you graduated with more than one major, you will receive a separate diploma for each major. It will also state if you graduated with honors.

  • Duplicate Diplomas: Duplicate diplomas may be ordered directly from the Admissions & Records Office by completing the Duplicate Diploma Request Form​ at a cost of $20 each.

Commencement Ceremony Participation

Who May Participate

  • Students who were granted a degree from Summer and/or Fall preceding the graduation ceremony.

  • Students who have petitioned for the Spring semester who are designated as eligibile or eligible pending. 
  • Students who have petitioned for the Spring but are missing 2 courses (up to 8 units) and are enrolled in them during the Summer session following the graduation ceremony, may participate provided they petition to graduated by April 30. These students will be designated as ineligible to but may participate. 
    • Ineligible but may participate students will need to resubmit a new graduation petition during the Summer term in order to be granted the degree and/or certificate. 
  • Please refer to our Graduation and Commencement Guide for details on the commencement ceremony.