Congratulations, 2022 NVU-Johnson Graduates!

Graduates and Families,

We are looking forward to celebrating the 155th Commencement ceremony of Northern Vermont University in person! Please see the details below for restrictions and requirements for attendance — for graduates and their guests.

Best wishes for a wonderful commencement experience!

When and where is commencement?

Date: Saturday, May 14, 2022

Time: 11 a.m.

Location: Under the tent, NVU-Johnson Campus or live-stream at


  • Complimentary coffee available throughout the morning, Dewey Commons, 10 a.m.
  • Immediately after the ceremony, please join us on the Quad for coffee and dessert reception to celebrate our newest alumni!

When do graduating students have to be there?

The Class of 2022 will be expected to line up at 10:15a.m. Saturday morning in the SHAPE Facility. There is no rehearsal or practice scheduled beforehand. Please wear or bring your cap and gown, which is required if you are walking.

Who may participate in the ceremony?

  • You must be a matriculated, degree-seeking student.
  • You must file a Request to Graduate on-line through the Portal (look for the tile “Plan Your Degree”), by April 1, 2022, at the absolute latest.
  • You must have a 2.0 G.P.A. (may be higher for some majors), and a minimum of 120 credits (B.A. and B.S. candidates) or 60 credits (A.A. and A.S. candidates), and must meet all degree requirements in your catalog. Master’s candidates require a minimum of 30 credits.

How long Does the commencement ceremony last?

The event will be approximately 60 to 90 minutes long.


A woman with short gray hair wearing a blue vneck shirt, smiles at the camera.Rebecca Holcombe

Rebecca Holcombe earned her certification as a school administrator through her coursework at Lyndon State College. She received her Doctorate from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, her master’s in Business Administration from the Simmons School of Management, and her bachelor’s from Brown University. She was appointed to serve as Vermont’s Secretary of Education by two governors. Prior to her work for the state of Vermont, she was the Director of Teacher Education at Dartmouth College, where she also taught a course on public policy.

Throughout her professional career, Holcombe has been recognized for her commitment to equity and public service. She received The Phyllis J. Rappaport Award from the Simmons School of Business for her significant deeds and accomplishments (2019). She received the Dr. Lincoln David Lynch Career Achievement in Education Award, presented by the New England Association of School Superintendents (2018). Dartmouth College recognized her with the 2017 Martin Luther King Social Justice Award. In 2015, she was recognized as an American Graduate Champion by Vermont PBS.

Guests and Tickets

Each graduate is given four tickets for family members/guests. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Is there special seating available?

Yes. We understand that some students have parents, grandparents, or other guests who may need special assistance at the ceremony; thus, we remove chairs to make spaces available for wheelchairs under the tent as needed. We also offer a live broadcast in our Dibden Theater, which is a climate-controlled space with easy access to restrooms. This has proven to be a viable option for some guests when they find it too cold, too hot, or too crowded under the tent.

Where can I order my cap and gown?

To participate in May Commencement, you must wear a cap and gown. To order your cap and gown, please go the Summit Bookstore website and order your cap and gown before April 22, 2022. Here is the link: Northern Vermont University Gowns for Graduation. Please be prepared to pay for the cap and gown at the time you order. No three-dimensional objects will be allowed on tops of caps. It is expected that all graduates will dress appropriately for the occasion.


Where do families park on Saturday, May 14?

Since most underclassmen will no longer be on campus, there should be sufficient parking for all visitors on the campus. Please carpool when possible. Gates will open at 9 a.m. and parking and seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Handicapped parking and seating will be available. Plan on arriving before 10:30 a.m.. Complimentary coffee bar will be available throughout the morning for guests. Public Safety officials will be on campus prior to the ceremony to direct guests to available parking areas. Please enter from College Road and follow the directions of the Public Safety officials. Shuttle service and/or accommodations will be available for those unable to walk distances.

May I bring a pet?

Please leave your pet at home. Do not leave your pet in your vehicle. The only animals allowed at the Commencement ceremony are service animals.

Where should my family make a hotel reservation?

If you have out-of-town guests coming who will need to stay in the area, we suggest you make hotel reservations as soon as possible. A list of area accommodations can be found on our website.

Honors Convocation, April 28, 2022

Honors Convocation will be held on Thursday, April 28, 2022, starting at 4 p.m. in the Dibden Center for the Arts. Awards will be given to more than 200 students for academic achievement and outstanding performance across departments and programs. Over $112,000 in scholarships and endowments will be awarded to students who have made impressive achievements in their department, program, or in general. The entire Johnson campus community as well as students’ families are invited to this special event and encouraged to attend to help us support our students.

Questions? Contact Susan Nichols, Assistant to the Provost, at or at 802.635.11242

Senior Week Activities

The senior week committee plans fun events that take place the week leading up to graduation. Events are currently being planned!

Questions? Contact Sarah Thornton, Director of Student Activities and Community Service, at or at 802.635.1478

Will there be a professional photographer?

A professional photographer from Graduation Images will record the moment when graduates are awarded his/her diploma folder. Approximately one week after the ceremony, a passport-sized, full-color proof will be mailed to the home address on file. There is no obligation to purchase the photograph. If you do wish to get prints of the photo, you will have the option of ordering from a variety of enlargement packages.

For more information, please contact or 800.424.3686.

My family would like to take photographs during the ceremony.

Guests are welcome to take photographs. They are simply asked to refrain from blocking the aisles or interfering with the other guests’ views of the ceremony. Please be respectful of all graduates and guests. There will also be plenty of opportunity to take photographs after the ceremony.

When will I get my diploma?

NVU-Johnson will be mailing ALL diplomas to graduates’ home addresses after the ceremony. Diplomas will arrive at your home approximately six-eight weeks after the Commencement Ceremony.

On the platform at the ceremony, in recognition of this special celebration, graduates will receive the diploma jackets with a signed congratulatory letter from the president.

Please note: If you need to have your diploma mailed to a different address other than the home address we have on file, please email the NVU Student Administrative Services at StudentServices@NorthernVermont.eduThis will help us to get your diploma to you in the most secure and timely manner.

How do I get my transcript?

Transcripts (for May graduates) should be available during the first or second week of June. Order your NVU transcript here. You must have met all financial obligations to the University in order to process a transcript request.

Is there any reason why I might not graduate?

The most common reasons for students being disappointed at the last minute are:

  • Final cumulative average falls below 2.0
  • Failure to complete degree requirements
  • Transcripts not received from other colleges attended
  • Incomplete grades not submitted
  • Not passing the required graduation standards

I live on campus, is there anything else I need to know?

Residence halls close at noon on Friday, May 13, 2022. Graduating seniors must make arrangements with Residential Life staff to remain later and check out of their rooms before Commencement on Saturday May 14, 2022. Regular meal service in the dining hall will end with dinner on Friday May, 13, 2022. Move out instructions will be sent in separate communications from Residential Life.

Contact Residential Life if you have more questions or 802.635.1200.

What if I owe NVU money?

Occasionally a few students forget to clear all their accounts with the University. Don’t be one of them. Please make sure that all outstanding accounts with the Student Administrative Services, Library, Public Safety, Residence Life, etc., are resolved/paid. Diplomas and transcripts will be delayed if you have any outstanding accounts.

If I have a student loan, is there something I need to do?

If you have borrowed a Federal Student Loan, which would include a Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized and/or Perkins Loan, federal regulations require that you complete mandatory exit counseling if you are graduating or dropping to below half time. The federal exit counseling requirement for the Federal Direct Loan program is completed online.

  • Visit
  • Log in using your FSA ID and password
  • Select “Manage Loans”
  • Select “Complete Exit Counseling”
  • Click “Start” next to the type of student you are

If you have questions regarding your Federal Direct Loans, please contact Student Administrative Services at

The federal exit counseling requirement for the Federal Perkins Loan Program is also completed online.

  • Visit
  • Login to My Account using your account number and ECSI pin number
  • Click on the “Exit Interview” link
  • From the list of Pending Exit Interviews, select the appropriate exit to complete. Follow the instructions provided.

If you have questions regarding your Perkins loan (s), please contact Deneen Russell at 802.635.1215 or


Once you graduate you are an official member of the Alumni Association! Some of the benefits of being a member include the alumni online community, group savings on home and auto insurance, continued use of the library, free admission at athletic events, continued support from Career Services, and invitations to regional alumni socials.
Stay connected with your alma mater through the Alumni Association!

As a newly minted member of the NVU-Johnson alumni, please watch for a postcard from Career Services in the late fall 2022 with a link to complete a quick Graduate Survey. Essentially, we would like to know what you are doing after graduation. Remember, career services is still here to support your career development after graduation, assisting you with your job searches, with resume review and more. 


For general information, contact Barb Flathers, Executive Assistant to the President, at 802.635.1240 or

If you have questions about your eligibility to graduate, please contact Tammy Carter, Associate Registrar, at 802.635.1227 or at

For questions about Senior Week activities, Contact Sarah Thornton, Director of Student Activities and Community Service, at 802.635.1478, or at