commencement processional

Southwest Baptist University is proud of the accomplishments of our graduates and we look forward to celebrating their accomplishments at commencement. Please refer to this site for important details about our commencement ceremonies.

commencement times and locations

Multiple commencement ceremonies are held to honor SBU graduates. See below for the time and location of your commencement.

Winter 2019 Commencement

Two commencement ceremonies will be held in December 2019. Ceremonies are held in the Jane and Ken Meyer Wellness and Sports Center on the Bolivar campus (building #33 on this campus map). 

Bachelor Degrees Commencement (All Campuses)

Graduates from all Southwest Baptist University campuses receiving a bachelor's degree will be recognized at the Bachelor Degrees Commencement.

Date: Friday, December 13, 2019
Time: 7 p.m. (graduates report for line-up at 6 p.m.)
Location: Jane and Ken Meyer Wellness and Sports Center, Bolivar campus

Live Stream

Associate Degrees Commencement (All Campuses)

Graduates from all Southwest Baptist University campuses receiving an associate's degree will be recognized at the Associate Degrees Commencement.

Date: Saturday, December 14, 2019
Time: 10 a.m.
Location: Jane and Ken Meyer Wellness and Sports Center, Bolivar campus

Live Stream

Graduate Degrees Commencement (All Campuses)

Graduates from all Southwest Baptist University graduate-level programs (master's, specialist, doctorate degrees) will be recognized at the Graduate Degrees Commencement. This commencement ceremony is only held once per year in May.

Date: Saturday, May 16, 2020
Time: 3 p.m.
Location: Jane and Key Meyer Wellness and Sports Center, Bolivar campus

Frequently Asked Questions

Guest FAQ

  • Seating is first-come, first-served.
  • Doors to the Hammons Court floor will open one hour before each ceremony.
Graduates are encouraged to limit the number of guests to no more than 10 to allow family members of all graduates the opportunity to attend. Tickets or reservations are not required for guests.
There are handicap spaces near the entrances of the Meyer Wellness and Sports Center. They are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • A designated area for special needs will be on the Hammons Court floor. Enter the south/main entrance and follow the signs to Special Needs Seating. Enter gym floor through the door on the right.
  • Second-floor seating also is available and may be reached by elevator.

Yes! A livestream of the commencement ceremonies will be available.

Bachelor's Degrees:
Associate's Degrees:

Each commencement ceremony is expected to last approximately one hour.
Local accommodations are listed on our campus location page. Additional accommodations are located in nearby Springfield, Mo.
The Bolivar Area Chamber of Commerce maintains a partial listing of Bolivar restaurants (those who are Chamber members).


Watch your SBU email account and the MySBU portal announcements for specific instructions for steps you need to complete prior to graduation.

No. There is no rehearsal. Therefore, reporting at lineup no later than 1 hour prior to the start of the ceremony is important so that you receive necessary instructions.
All graduates need to report to the Intramural Gym no later than 1 hour before your ceremony begins. The Intramural Gym is in the northeast corner of the Meyer Wellness Center (Building #33 on this map).
Leave personal belongings with others, as the lineup location is not locked during the ceremony.

Yes! A livestream of the commencement ceremonies will be available.

Bachelor's degrees:
Associate's degrees:

Your attendance at the ceremony is required. If you cannot attend due to extreme circumstances, you must gain permission to graduate "in absentia." Requests must be submitted as soon as possible but no later than November 1, 2019. To make a request, send an email to, stating your reason for being absent. You will receive a response by email within five business days.

A minimum of 45 semester hours of credit must have been completed at SBU prior to semester of graduation. For the graduation ceremony, honors are calculated on overall Grade Point Average from the previous semester.

  • Summa Cum Laude: 3.850-4.00
  • Magna Cum Laude: 3.700-3.849
  • Cum Laude: 3.500-3.699

After final semester grades are completed, official honors will be determined for transcripts.

Honor cords will be distributed at graduation.

  • Bolivar campus: Caps and gowns will be ready to be picked up from the SBU Bookstore beginning December 2. Bookstore hours are 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Friday, and 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. on December 13. Please check your cap and gown before leaving to make sure you have the correct sizes.
  • Springfield campus: Pick up your regalia from the Springfield Campus Library on Monday, December 2, from 8:30-10 a.m.
  • Mountain View and Salem campuses: Office staff will distribute your cap and gown to you.

Note for all graduates: The cost of regalia is included in your graduation fee, but you must order your regalia no later than October 15. Information about how to order the regalia will be sent to your SBU email address and posted on the MySBU portal in advance of the ordering deadline.

Questions regarding picking up your regalia? Contact the SBU Bookstore at (417) 328-1530.

Gown pressing is available for Bolivar campus undergraduates and all graduate degree recipients. A fee applies. Contact the SBU Bookstore by December 6 at (417) 328-1530.

Recommended attire:

  • Men: White dress shirt, dark slacks and dark dress shoes
  • Women: Dark dress (or dark skirt/slacks and blouse) and dark dress shoes

Caps are worn level with tassels on the left at all times. Men will remove caps at times of prayer; ladies will leave caps on at all times. This regalia is for you to keep.

Undergraduate degrees: The stole is worn like an honor cord, draped around the neck with the seal on your right. Those receiving honor cords will wear them on top of the stole.

Only the stoles, honor cords distributed at graduation lineup, and medals awarded to the Dutile Honors Program graduates may be worn with the graduation gown. It is NOT appropriate to wear cords/sashes/pins/ribbons from honor societies or Who's Who organizations during commencement.

Graduate degrees: The graduate hoods will be distributed at lineup. Note: Graduate degrees commencement is only held in May.

Announcements may be ordered directly from CB Announcements or generic announcements may be purchased at the SBU Bookstore

The list of graduates will be posted online, on the Media Relations page, once grades have been finalized.

News releases will be sent to Missouri newspapers.

For out-of-state newspaper announcements, complete this form if you would like to have a news release sent to your hometown newspaper.

Grad Images will make pictures available online for your purchase. Visit or call 1-800-261-7709 with questions.

To be eligible for a discount on photo purchases, visit prior to the ceremony to pre-register for your graduation photos.

Diplomas and transcripts will be available within four weeks of graduation.

  • Pick up in the Registrar's Office: You are encouraged to pick up your diploma and transcript in the Registrar's Office. Please call (417) 328-1896 if you plan to pick up your diploma and transcript so that you can be notified when it is available.
  • Receive by mail: Diplomas and transcripts not picked up in the Registrar's Office will be mailed to the address you supplied when you submitted your online application to graduate.

All degrees will be granted contingent upon successful completion of all academic degree requirements, which includes the Community Life and Worship (CLW) requirements for graduates on the Bolivar campus, and payment of all financial balances. Once grades are determined and finalized, diplomas and official transcripts will be mailed to students who have successfully completed all requirements.