Congratulations, Fall 2022, Spring and Summer 2023 Copper Mountain College Graduates!

Celebrate this major accomplishment by participating in the college-wide Commencement Ceremony. The following information will provide you with specific instructions regarding your participation.

Commencement Photo


1. Petition to Graduate with a Degree Form available here: “ Petition to Earn an Associate Degree

Petitions are accepted until March 1, 2023; email them to Janie Ramstorf at

2. Check your CMC Student Email Account – Receive an Invitation to Participate in the Commencement Ceremony

Students eligible to participate in the Commencement Ceremony will receive an email from Nicole Virtue. In the 2023 ceremony, we will celebrate students that are eligible to participate from Fall 2022, Spring 2023 and Summer 2023. 

This email contains information about the Commencement Ceremony and the link to the Intent to Participate in Commencement. Complete the information on the link by May 1, 2023. This confirms your participation in the May 2023 Commencement Ceremony.

3. Purchase Cap, Gown, and Announcements

Commencement participants wear a black cap and gown. You may purchase your cap and gown in the General Ernie Reid Bookstore. You may also purchase announcements at the Bookstore. pricing flyer

If you have any questions about Commencement, please email Nicole Virtue at If you have questions about graduation eligibility, please email Janie Ramstorf at

2023 Commencement Ceremony

CMC 2023 Commencement Ceremony

Thursday, May 25, 2023 ~ Starts at 5:45pm

Where: Copper Mountain College, The Bell Center   Campus Map Bell Center Layout for GradsBell Center Layout for Grad Guests

Copper Mountain College’s Commencement is held annually on the campus. The ceremony will include the processional and recessional of all graduates, candidates, faculty and noted dignitaries. Commencement 2023 includes Fall 2022 graduates, Spring 2023 and Summer 2023 anticipated graduates.

During the commencement ceremony, graduates will be handed the cover for their degree. Degrees may be available for mailing after the Board of Trustees meeting in August 2023, for all graduates who completed their degree requirements. Graduates will be notified by CMC student email  when their degree is available for mailing. 

Commencement Information for the Student – TBA

Graduation Announcement Etiquette – TBA

Join the CMC Alumni Association – It’s FREE!

RSVP to Participate

Grads must submit an RSVP to Participate form indicating whether or not they are walking on May 25th. This form is used to plan all things Commencement by the Committee. The RSVP to Participate will be provided by CMC student email to each eligible grad (by mid-April) and must be returned by May 1st for inclusion in the Commencement ceremony.

Commencement Rehearsal

When: Thursday, May 25, 2023 at 9am

Where: Copper Mountain College, Campus Map Bell Center Layout for Grads

A faculty hosted Breakfast  in honor of CMC graduates immediately follows rehearsal in the Bell Center Community Room at approximately 10am. 

 Base Graduation Recognition Ceremony –  Active Duty Military & Family Members

Grad Recognition Ceremony aboard the MCAGCC Spring 2023 – TBA

Cap & Gown Information for Students

Graduates and candidates will wear black-colored caps and gowns, which are available at the bookstore beginning in April. Please see the pricing flyer — or check with the Campus Bookstore for prices at 760-366-5272.  All Graduates must wear the Cap and Gown. No other uniforms may be worn in lieu of the Cap and Gown. RN or VN pins may not be worn with the Cap and Gown.

Adornments: CMC has maintained the integrity of the academic dress/regalia tradition as prescribed by the American Council on Education (ACE), the major coordinating body for all the nation’s higher education institutions. ACE does not permit graduates to wear adornments or other embellishments with their Cap and Gown, except for Phi Theta Kappa and Alpha Beta Gamma, CMC-recognized Academic Honor Societies. At this time, CMC graduates are required to adhere to this timely tradition of not wearing leis, adornments, wearing of RN or VN pins, or other embellishments for the commencement ceremony.

Membership in Phi Theta Kappa is denoted by the wearing of the Gold Honor Stole, a Blue and Gold Double Honor Cord, and/or a Gold Tassel. The Gold Key Medallion may not be worn. It does not denote academics; it denotes community service and should not be worn.

Membership in Alpha Beta Gamma is denoted by the wearing of the Sapphire Blue Satin Stole.

The Student Veterans of CMC are permitted to wear Red, White & Blue recognition cords to signify their former and current military service. CMC’s Service Club wears Copper & Teal; EOPS wears Silver; CalWORKs wears Gold; ASCMC wears Peacock Blue; the Communication Club wears White, Maroon, & Teal; and the American Sign Language Club wears Red, Black, and Silver recognition cords.

Verified transfer students are permitted to wear a medallion signifying their acceptance into a 4-year college or university.

Grads will need to contact their special program or faculty club advisor for any of the above items. See informational sheet here.

Decorating Mortarboards (“Cap”) Policy: Be creative, add personalization. All decorations must be appropriate and respectful for the occasion. Keep it clean! Only 2-dimensional decorations; no 3-dimensional decorations. All decorations must fit on the top of the cap; decorations cannot go over the edges of the cap. Remember to leave room for your regular-sized CMC tassel! (no mega tassels) Gowns are not to be decorated; caps only. No wearing of leis or other non-honors related or recognition-related cords or accoutrement. Please maintain the decorum of the ceremony.

What Parents and Visitors Should Know

There is limited seating. Graduates are limited to 5 guests each. All guest seating is in the bleachers.

There is very limited parking. Please carpool with family and friends.

Seating is limited for expected guests and participants in the bleachers. Along with the number of expected guests, please indicate on your Intent to Participate form if you or any of your guests are disabled and will require special arrangements or assistance. There will be listening devices and a signer for the deaf if any graduates indicate hearing impaired guests will be attending. Please notify your guests who are smokers the Bell Center is a non-smoking area. Please ask your guests to turn off cellular telephones and pagers during the graduation ceremony. All guests are to enter the Bell Center through the West doors (facing Joshua Tree and Yucca Valley). Late arriving guests are not permitted to enter the Gymnasium during the Pledge of Allegiance, and National Anthem.

Due to Fire Code Regulations, if seating is not available in the Gymnasium, guests must remain in the lobby.

Accommodations for Persons with Special Needs

The event will be held in the Bell Center. Accommodations will be made for persons with special needs. If you have any concerns, please contact the ACCESS Office (formerly DSPS) at 760-366-3791, ext. 5861.

Campus Map

Bell Center Layout for Grad Guests

Transfer Students

How would you like your University acceptance letter and picture displayed on campus? There are a bulletin boards in the 100 and 200 Quads dedicated in your honor. It’s CMC’s way of saying “Congratulations” and “A Job Well Done.” If you are interested in this privilege, please contact the Transfer Center in Student Services at FLYER – TBA

CMC is proud to offer transfer students a $250.00 transfer scholarship!! See enclosed FLYER for details.

Graduation Requirements


Students are responsible for meeting the full requirements for graduation as set forth in the College Catalog. Counselors assist students in planning their program of study, but the final responsibility for meeting education requirements rests with the student. Students must complete a Petition to Earn an Associate Degree form the semester prior to graduation. The deadline to file a Petition to Earn an Associate Degree is October 1st for Fall graduates and March 1st for Spring & Summer anticipated graduates.

Minimum Graduation Requirements to be eligible for graduation with an Associate degree: The student must meet ALL of the following requirements:

  • Have passed all courses specified and required in the student’s chosen program of study.
  • Have earned a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 on all required courses attempted at the College.
  • Have taken and passed at least 12 semester units in residency at CMC.
  • Have paid all financial obligations owed to the College.
  • Have filed with the Office of Student Services a petition to earn an associate degree (graduate) one semester prior to the student’s final semester.

Honors at Graduation Copper Mountain Community College encourages scholarship among students through formal recognition of those who graduate with honors. Grade point average (GPA) is cumulative and includes all college work completed at CMC and all degree-applicable coursework completed at other colleges/universities. To recognize academic accomplishment, students completing associate degree programs with prescribed cumulative grade point averages are recognized at the college commencement exercises and degrees awarded, as honor students.

Honor GPA
 Highest Honors  3.90-4.00
 High Honors  3.75-3.89
 Academic Distinction  3.50-3.74

Petition for graduation with an Associate degree by filling out the following form. If you intend to receive more than one degree, please fill out one form per degree: Petition to Earn an Associate Degree  Important! Please be sure to have official transcripts from all the colleges you have attended on file in the Admissions and Records Office. Your degree cannot be conferred until ALL official transcripts with ALL degree-applicable grades earned at all transfer colleges attended are on file. Whether or not you plan to participate in the Commencement Ceremony, you must apply for a graduation evaluation of your records by March 1st, if you wish to have a May graduation date posted on your transcript.

GPA and Honors

Graduating students participating in Commencement will receive a separate email containing their cumulative GPA (calculated through the previous fall) and honors if applicable. The District recognizes academic accomplishment by awarding associate degrees with Highest Honors, High Honors, and Academic Distinction designations. All degree-applicable work from all transfer colleges attended will be included in the computation of the cumulative grade point average for graduation honors. To recognize academic accomplishment, students completing associate degree programs with prescribed cumulative grade point averages are to be recognized through the college commencement exercises and degrees awarded as honor students. Academic Renewal requests prior to graduation will not be processed for graduation honors. Graduation with Honors is the most comprehensive academic honor because it is cumulative. While President’s List and Honor Roll awards are made on a semester basis, Graduation with Honors is based on all degree-applicable grades earned at all transfer colleges attended, with a final overall GPA no less than 3.50. All transcripts from other colleges must be on file in the Office of Student Services prior to filing a “Request for Evaluation”. Board Policy 6540.2: “All degree applicable work from all transfer colleges attended will be included in the computation of the cumulative grade point average for graduation honors.” Requests to disregard transcripts containing degree-applicable work with poor grades cannot be honored. Academic Renewal requests prior to graduation will not be processed for graduation honors. Commencement is held the last day of the spring semester when the majority of spring grades have not yet been received or posted to transcripts and commencement programs are already printed. For the purpose of the commencement ceremony, honors will be calculated on grades earned through the previous fall semester. However, final grades for spring & summer graduates will be available and included in the calculation of honors for notation on the official transcripts, which will be available several weeks AFTER commencement. If you are graduating with Academic Distinction, High Honors, or Highest Honors, it will be noted as your name is announced during the commencement ceremony, and printed in the commencement program. Student honors status is based on one of the following cumulative GPAs:

  1. Student cumulative GPA is based on all degree applicable lower division grades earned at all colleges attended through fall 2022 equals 3.90 – 4.00. Student will graduate with Highest Honors. OR
  2. Student cumulative GPA is based on all degree applicable lower division grades earned at all colleges attended through fall 2022 equals 3.75 – 3.89. Student will graduate with High Honors. OR
  3. Student cumulative GPA is based on all degree applicable lower division grades earned at all colleges attended through fall 2022 equals 3.50 – 3.74. Student will graduate with Academic Distinction. OR
  4. Student cumulative GPA is based on all degree applicable lower division grades earned at all colleges attended through fall 2022 is below 3.50. Student GPA qualifies you for graduation, but not for honors status.

If a student questions their assessment of honor status, they can double-check it by adding ALL degree-applicable lower division units from ALL colleges on file through the end of the fall semester, not counting repeated courses. If there are any transcripts from the quarter system, student must convert the units to semester units prior to calculating the grade point average (GPA). Multiply quarter units by .66 before adding to semester units. Then add up all grade points following the same guidelines, including quarter to semester conversions. Divide the points by the units to arrive at the GPA. If student calculation results in a different honor status than reported above, student may contact Student Services, by May 1st to have it double-checked. Then, if a change is warranted, the new honor status can be entered before Commencement programs go to print. Recalculation of GPA the day of commencement in order to be announced is not possible.

Honor Graduate Speaker The Honor Graduate Speaker is chosen from a select group of students graduating from Copper Mountain College with “Highest” or “High Honors.”  This recognition is bestowed on students who have a cumulative grade point average of 3.75 to 4.00, through the previous fall semester and includes grades for all degree applicable work from all transfer colleges attended in the computation of the cumulative grade point average. Towards the end of March, students meeting the GPA requirement, will be invited to complete an application and submit an essay to be considered as the Honor Graduate Speaker at Commencement. In April/May, the Commencement Committee will review received applications and hear applicant’s speeches. Within a week, the selected applicant will be notified.  

What is the difference between Graduation and Commencement?

The Commencement ceremony is often referred to as “Graduation”. But in reality there is a difference. The Commencement ceremony is just that, a ceremony. It is an end of Spring semester celebration for students projected to successfully complete all of their graduation requirements by the end of that Spring or Summer semester. Students completing all their requirements by the end of the previous Fall semester also participate in the upcoming Spring ceremony. Students do not receive an actual degree at the commencement ceremony. Confirmation of degree completion will not take place until after official grades for spring and summer are posted. It is highly recommended that students meet with their Counselor prior to their last semester in order to review their records and ensure all graduation requirements will be met.

Graduation refers to the semester in which a student has officially and successfully completed all of their graduation requirements. You must apply for the semester in which you plan to graduate by submitting a Petition to Earn a Degree form to Once grades are posted, the student’s record will be evaluated and a degree will be made available for mailing 6-9 weeks later. Students can graduate either at the end of the Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters, or in between. There is only one Commencement ceremony that takes place each year, at the end of the Spring semester, to celebrate graduation from the previous Fall, upcoming Spring and Summer semesters.

Dos and Don’ts for Commencement Day:

Dos and Don’ts for Commencement Day:

If you want to participate in Commencement you must abide by the following guidelines:

  • DO remember to attend the rehearsal at 9a.m. on the day of commencement at the Bell Center.
  • DO remember to iron your gown before the event (cool iron).
  • DO remember to bring extra bobby pins to secure your cap (optional).
  • DO wear the cap straight, pulled down over the forehead. Caps should be worn at all times during the ceremony by men, except during the National Anthem.
  • DO make sure your tassel is draped over the left front corner of the cap.
  • DO show up to the Bell Center Gymnasium by 4:45 pm SHARP to start lining up.
  • DON’T bring any illegal substances or alcoholic beverages with you to the event. Coolers, bottles, and alcoholic beverages are NOT permitted at the ceremony.
  • DON’T wear leis, adornments, RN or VN pins, other embellishments or decorate mortarboards. You will be asked to remove any of these items prior to the ceremony and may not be permitted to participate if you refuse.
  • DO leave all personal belongings (coats, purses etc.) at home or with family.
  • DO plan to line up with your friends who are graduating and enjoy your accomplishment!!
When will I receive my degree - Spring 2023

When Will I Receive My Degree? Spring 2023

Students graduating in Spring 2023, who have met ALL graduation requirements, your degrees will be available for mailing after the August 2023 Board of Trustees meeting, which at this time is scheduled for August 10th. The reason for this is:

  • ALL grades have to be entered and posted. Anticipated date this year: June 1st.
  • The bulk of reviewing degree audits for requirement completion is completed in June and July.
  • There are 100+ degree audits to review to ensure students met their spring 2023 requirements.
  • After reviewing them, the Dean of Student Services reviews each one and signs off on them.
  • They are then posted to the student’s transcript, which is a multi-step process.
  • Degrees are printed and sent to the Board of Trustees for signatures.
  • Student Services generally receives the degrees on the Monday after the BOT meeting and then begins emailing students to notify them their degrees are available for mailing.

PLEASE NOTE: At other colleges, this process can take up to 6 months.

When degrees are available for mailing, you will receive an email in your CMC student email. Please reply to this email with your complete mailing address; your degree will then be mailed to you. 

If you do not provide your mailing address by email, your degree will not be mailed. We must have written verification of a mailing address.

Please allow 2-3 weeks for the mailing process.