Graduation Policies & Procedures
Students are responsible for knowing and meeting the University’s graduation requirements in a specific degree program. To qualify for any degree, the candidate must:
- Complete all requirements (Bay Path Core Curriculum, major, and elective) for the degree program;
- Meet the residency requirement of successfully earning a minimum of 30 credits with Bay Path;
- Achieve Bay Path’s minimum cumulative grade point average;
- Complete an ePortfolio showing evidence of curricular and extracurricular learning; and
- Complete the Graduation Application and Graduating Student Survey sent to prospective graduating students during their final academic year.
Conferral of Degrees
Bay Path University confers undergraduate degrees at the conclusion of each subterm. Students who complete their degree requirements in the middle of a subterm will receive a conferral date equivalent to the last day of classes in that subterm.
Certificates pursued concurrently with a degree program will not be awarded until the degree has officially been conferred. Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, the University Registrar, and the Office of Academic Affairs.
Student Participation in Commencement Exercises
The Commencement ceremony is our culture’s most significant public demonstration of educational achievement. Commencement is a highly ritualistic, stylized event with specified protocols and regalia. Like other rituals in our culture, the ritual of conferring degrees, wearing caps and gowns, listening to speeches and acknowledging academic achievement with diplomas all underscore the importance of what one does in the teaching and learning environment. The celebration of Commencement stands as an important and enduring academic tradition and ceremony, set apart from our day to day activities. Most importantly, Commencement marks the completion and conferral of degrees. Students are permitted to participate in only one processional for a completed degree program.
Bay Path University typically holds their Commencement ceremony each year in May. Students in Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s, Specialist in Education, or Doctorate degree programs who received degree conferral during the respective academic year or those on pace to complete their degree requirements by the end of their division’s academic year are eligible to participate. For undergraduate students, this means both being enrolled in all outstanding requirements (in Spring Accelerated III) by April 30th and being on pace to complete all outstanding requirements by the final day of the spring semester. Students who are not on pace to complete their degree requirement(s) by the end of the spring semester are not eligible to participate in the current academic year’s Commencement ceremony because they are considered a potential graduate in the following academic year. Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the respective Dean, the University Registrar, and the Office of Academic Affairs.
Eligible students who have not completed their degree requirements at the time of Commencement will receive a blank diploma cover and will appear in the Commencement program with a notation that degree requirements were incomplete at the time of the printing of the program. Latin honors will still be recognized and the student will be provided an honor cord if they have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher at the time of Commencement.
Bay Path University allows graduates to provide a preferred first, middle, and last name to be listed in the Commencement program and read aloud as they cross the stage. Graduates provide their graduation name when they complete the Graduation Application. The name of graduates who do not complete the Graduation Application at least two weeks before the date of Commencement will reflect their legal name on file. The institution also reserves the right to deny any desired name deemed inappropriate.
Diplomas and transcripts from the institution will reflect the student’s legal name on file. Students who wish to update their legal name on file must complete the Personal Information Update Form on the MyBayPath portal and must upload their social security card matching the legal name being requested.
Students who have completed all degree requirements whose final cumulative grade point average is 3.50 or above are awarded their degrees with honor according to the following criteria:
- Summa cum Laude: 3.90 to 4.00
- Magna cum Laude: 3.70 to 3.89
- Cum Laude: 3.50 to 3.69
Eligible students will have their Latin honors recognized on any their diploma, in the Commencement program, and they will be given an honor cord to wear if they are participating at Commencement. The Latin honors will also appear on any transcript ordered after their degree is conferred.
Students who opt to participate before all degree requirements are met that have a cumulative grade point average of 3.50 at the time of Commencement will have their Latin honors reflected in the Commencement program and they will be given an honor cord to wear if they are participating at Commencement. Latin honors will only be recognized on their diploma and on any transcript ordered if they meet the minimum cumulative grade point average after their degree is conferred.
Awards and National Honor Societies
The Faculty Award
The Faculty Award is made annually to the baccalaureate degree candidate who, in the judgment of the faculty, represents outstanding scholastic achievement, character, and leadership.
Thomas G. Carr Award
The Thomas G. Carr Award is presented annually to an outstanding associate degree candidate who will pursue their baccalaureate degree at Bay Path. This award was endowed by the Sidney E. Helliwell family in honor of Thomas G. Carr, Bay Path’s first President. The recipient is a student whose academic achievement, character, and service to the University or the community reflect the standards and values of Bay Path University.
Jeanette T. Wright Leadership Award
The Jeanette T. Wright Leadership Award is presented annually to an associate degree candidate who will pursue their baccalaureate degree at Bay Path and is based on the student’s leadership excellence, extracurricular activities, and campus citizenship. This award is named in memory of Bay Path’s fourth President, who was the first woman to hold that office.
Alpha Phi Sigma Honor Society
Alpha Phi Sigma is a National Criminal Justice Honor Society, founded nationally in 1942, and started at Bay Path University in 2015, for the purposes of recognizing scholarly achievement in the field of Criminal Justice. Candidates must meet four requirements:
- be within the top 35% of their class;
- have earned a minimum grade point average of 3.5 in all classes;
- completed 60 hours of university credit including no fewer than 18 credits in the Criminal Justice field and if a transfer student completed two semesters of residency;
- and, be a declared Criminal Justice major or minor.
Initiation takes place annually.
Delta Delta Epsilon Honor Society
Delta Delta Epsilon is a National Forensic Science Honor Society, founded nationally in 2010, and at Bay Path University in 2017, for the purposes of stimulating academic achievement, promoting community understanding, and advancing the fields of forensic science. Undergraduate candidates must meet four requirements:
- be a declared Forensic Science major;
- completed 60 hours of university credit, of which 18 credit hours are in the Forensic Science major;
- completed at least two semesters in residency at Bay Path University;
- and, have earned a minimum grade point average of 3.5 in all classes.
Initiation takes place biannually at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters.
Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society
The International Honor Society in Education was founded in 1911 for the purpose of sustaining an honored community of diverse educators by promoting excellence and advanced scholarship, leadership, and service. Membership is open to undergraduate women, and graduate men and women, who meet at least the following requirements. Undergraduate students must have a minimum GPA of 3.5 and be at least a second semester sophomore. They must have completed 60 hours of college credit of which at least 18 credit hours are in the education major. Undergraduate students must have at least two semesters in residency at Bay Path University.
Lambda Epsilon Chi (LEX) Honor Society
Undergraduate students enrolled in the baccalaureate or associate program in legal studies are eligible for membership in this national honor society in their final year; students enrolled in the certificate program are eligible upon completion of the coursework for the certificate. Only students whose academic performance is consistently exemplary across the curriculum will be inducted. To qualify, a student must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.25 in all classes and a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.5 in all legal classes, and have completed 2/3 of their legal courses.
Maroon Key Honor Society
Undergraduate students who have earned 30 credits locally at Bay Path University with a cumulative GPA of 3.70 or higher are eligible for induction to the Maroon Key Honor Society. New members are inducted into the society at an annual spring ceremony or are recognized at Commencement rehearsal. Please note that Maroon Key calculations exclude credit hours earned through off campus study, with the exception of credits earned through CCGS.
Psi Chi Honor Society
The Psi Chi International Honor Society in Psychology was founded in 1929 for the purpose of encouraging, stimulating, and maintaining excellence in scholarship, and advancing the science of psychology. A chapter was established at Bay Path University in 2004. To qualify for induction which takes place once per year, students majoring or minoring in psychology must be ranked in the top 35% of their undergraduate class; have a CGPA of 3.50 or better in all classes; a minimum GPA of 3.0 in psychology coursework; and must have completed a minimum of three semesters of coursework (36 credits) which includes a minimum of 9 hours of psychology coursework (excludes optional pass/fail grades). Transfer students must meet the same requirements stated above. However, because transfer students begin with a 0.0 GPA, they must establish both a cumulative and a psychology GPA at Bay Path University. The CGPA will be based on completed coursework for 12 semester credits and the psychology GPA will be based on completed psychology coursework for 9 semester credits at Bay Path University, both of which exclude optional pass/fail grades. Eligibility will be reviewed bi-annually and students will be notified if they meet eligibility criteria. Students must be enrolled at Bay Path University at the time of application.