Celebrating our Graduates

Graduation day is the best day of the year at Rock Valley College! Celebrate your accomplishments officially by crossing the stage. Graduation ceremonies are held each May on the main campus.

Ready to graduate?

You must submit an application for graduation in order to graduate from RVC. On the application for graduation, you must indicate your intent to participate in this ceremony. Additional information regarding will follow.

Information for Graduates

Tickets Required

Tickets are required for guests to attend each Commencement Ceremony. Each graduate will receive tickets, based on the total number of ceremony participants, to be issued during Cap & Gown Pick Up. The ceremony will also be live streamed in the Student Center Atrium for guests without tickets.

Planning Ahead

Rock Valley College is committed to ensuring its facilities, programs, activities, programs, and services are accessible to everyone. A variety of resources are available for guests with special needs during Commencement.



Graduation Survey

As we continuously strive to improve our efforts as an institution of higher education, to help this process we request that you please complete this graduation survey. This survey is designed to help the college learn about the overall experience of our graduates, provide graduates with an opportunity to provide anonymous feedback, evaluate the level of satisfaction our graduates experienced with programs and services, and determine which programs and services may need improvement to improve the overall college experience. 

Graduation Survey


Information for Graduates

If you plan to receive a degree or certificate from RVC you are required to meet all of the following requirements in order to have the degree or certificate granted:

  1. Meet all program requirements for the degree or certificate being pursued.
  2. Receive a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 for all college-level coursework.
  3. Complete a minimum of fifteen (15) credit hours at Rock Valley College if applying for a degree.
  4. Apply for graduation (completion) at the Records and Registration office on the top floor of the Student Center. Your application for graduation (completion) must be signed by an academic advisor. Please make an appointment with your advisor by visiting Academic Advising on the top floor of the Student Center to obtain the signature.
    • On the application for graduation, you must indicate your intent to participate in this ceremony. Only those students who have indicated their intent to participate in the ceremony will be sent information about graduation.
    • While it is required to meet with an advisor or program director prior to filing for graduation (completion), if you are unable to file in person please download the application and return it to: Rock Valley College: Records & Registration Office, 3301 N. Mulford Rd., Rockford, IL 61114.

Your application must be filed during the semester in which you plan to complete program requirements by the following deadlines:

  • Spring completion: Apply by March 1
  • Summer completion: Apply by June 1
  • Fall completion: Apply by October 1

Graduation Application

Graduation Academic Honors: Graduates with a cumulative GPA of 3.25 to 3.74 will graduate with honors. Those with a cumulative GPA of 3.75 to 3.99 will graduate with high honors. Those with a cumulative GPA of 4.00 will graduate with highest honors.

Please note: Degrees are not issued to students during the graduation ceremony. All earned degrees and certificates will be mailed to students four weeks after the end of the semester in which the student filed and completed.

All graduates participating in the RVC Commencement are required to order a cap and gown. You may not borrow a cap and gown from a previous participant. During Cap & Gown Pick Up Day, all participants will receive a detailed information sheet that will outline important details for the day-of commencement, including line-up locations/times, guest information, and more. Each year, information will be shared during the spring semester.

Orders for 2023 are no longer being accepted. We are unable to accept late order forms due to limitations with the ordering process.

If you are a member of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), you may wear the PTK stole and tassel for the ceremony. You will need to purchase these items ahead of time directly from the PTK website using your member login information.

Questions? Email

Nominations for the 2024 Student Commencement Speaker are now open through March 22, 2024.

Please consider nominating a student who you feel would make a great speaker at this year's ceremonies. Students may nominate themselves. Student nominees should meet the following basic criteria (according to your knowledge):

  • Student is in good academic standing (2.0 GPA or higher)
  • Student is an upstanding citizen of our community
  • Student is a positive student ambassador
  • Student has no contentious/long-term or outstanding college disciplinary record*
  • Student has had no habitual, recent, or heinous criminal felony record*
  • Student has applied for graduation with Records and Registration by the March 1 deadline

*Nominees will agree to a disciplinary check and a background check. If concerns arise, the Dean of Students will consult with the Vice President of Student Affairs and/or the President of the College for a final decision. Student progress/development, impacted parties of the RVC Community and Rockford community will be considered. This information will not be shared with the commencement committee or college campus at large to protect the privacy of this student’s record.

The commencement planning team will review all submissions, and nominees will be required to audition their speech before a panel of judges. Auditions will be held Monday, April 8, 2024 from 1-5 p.m. on Main Campus in the Student Center, Room 1222.

The Student Commencement Speaker(s) will receive: 

  • The opportunity to deliver their speech at Commencement
  • Commencement plaque/name included on the RVC perpetual commencement plaque
  • Special Congratulations from a member of our RVC Leadership Team
  • VIP Access to all commencement activities
  • DVD copy of speech (limit one)

Submit a Student Speaker Nomination