Mesa Journeys



Commencement vs. graduation


For San Diego Mesa College, the Commencement Ceremony is the end-of-year celebration in May for students that have completed or are expected to complete their degree/certificate requirements. Students that completed their graduation requirements in the prior Fall or Summer semesters may also participate in the May commencement ceremony. For more information on the annual commencement ceremony, please visit the commencement website here!

Graduation, on the other hand, is a multiple step process of developing an educational plan with a counselor, completing your course requirements, and submitting an Application for Graduation. 

The term in which you have officially and successfully completed all of your graduation requirements is when you graduate. Once your final grades are posted, your academic records will be evaluated to determine if you completed all requirements and your diploma will be sent to you by mail to the address listed on your MySDCCD portal

Are you ready to graduate?

Watch this tutorial to prepare for your application for graduation!

Below are the 4 steps you need to take to ensure you graduate and can participate in the May Commencement Ceremony.

Step 1: See a Counselor - Create an Education Plan

You will need to schedule an appointment to meet with a counselor to develop your educational plan for the specific degree or certificate you are pursuing. Students can meet with their counselor in EOPS, DSPS, STAR/TRIO, or General Counseling Office

Step 2: Apply for Graduation

Once you have an educational plan for the degree or certificate you wish to receive, you need to Apply for Graduation.

  • Apply for Graduation though your student portal at Under My Academics on the left-hand side of your student portal, click Apply for Graduation. Be sure to click submit at the end!
  • You may apply for graduation up to two (2) semesters before you plan to finish your classes/graduate. However, it is recommend to submit your application the semester before you graduate.
  • Transcript Requirement: All transcripts from other colleges/universities attended must be on file prior to submitting an Application for Graduation.
    **Transcripts may be waived for petition for a Certificate of Achievement, if all coursework for the certification has been completed within the District. See Transcripts page.

2021-2022 Apply for Graduation Deadlines:

October 1, 2021  - Deadline to Apply for Graduation ONLY for students transferring to a CSU in Spring 2022 who are completing an Associate in Arts for Transfer (AA-T) or an Associate in Science for Transfer (AS-T). Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT).

November 15, 2021 - Deadline to Apply for Graduation and be a Fall 2021 graduate. Students filing after this date will be a Spring 2022 graduate.

February 15, 2022 - Deadline to Apply for Graduation for students transferring to a CSU in Fall 2022 who are completing an Associate in Arts for Transfer (AA-T) or an Associate in Science for Transfer (AS-T). Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT).

March 15, 2022 - Deadline to Apply for Graduation and ensure your name will be included in the commencement program. **Students filing after this date, but before April 30, 2022 will still be Spring 2022 graduates, but their name may not be in the Commencement Program.**

April 30, 2022 - Deadline to Apply for Graduation and be a Spring 2022 graduate. Students filing after this date will be a Summer 2022 graduate.

July 31, 2022 - Deadline to Apply for Graduation and be a Summer 2022 graduate.  Students filing after this date will be Fall 2022 graduates.

STEP 3: View graduation status on your mysdccd portal

Once you submit your Application for Graduation, you may view your graduation status in the My Academics section, located on the left-hand side of your student portal.

  • Make sure your email address is up to date, in case your evaluator needs to contact you for any reason. You can update your email address through your student portal.
  • It will take up to 3-4 months to receive your graduation status online.
  • If you have trouble understanding your graduation status, please contact your counselor.

Step 4: Receive an invitation via email for the commencement ceremony


The 2022 San Diego Mesa College Commencement Ceremony will be held in-person on Friday, May 27th, 2022 at 4:00 p.m. 

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.

The final honors distinction will be determined upon completion of all coursework completed through the semester you are completing your requirements.

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.