Wrapping Up at Brandeis and Officially Graduating

To receive your degree, you must first file an application to graduate, available through the registrar’s website soon after Commencement for August degrees. The current deadline to file this form is June 16, 2023 for August degrees. You should also fill in your diploma name and address in Workday.

If you are a PhD candidate submitting a dissertation or a master’s student submitting a thesis, visit GSAS’s Thesis and Dissertation Guide for information on formatting and submitting it, including submitting the associated forms.

The current deadline to defend a dissertation is July 21, 2023 for August degrees. As part of the defense process, you must schedule your defense and submit this calendar form to GSAS at least two weeks before the defense date so that your defense can be included on the public GSAS calendar. For the present, you and your committee can work together to determine whether the defense will be in-person, remote, or hybrid; the outside reader can always participate remotely if you wish.

Towards the end of your last semester, you will receive an exit survey from GSAS and, if you are earning a PhD, the Survey of Earned Doctorates (SED) from the National Science Foundation. The GSAS exit survey asks specific questions about your experience in your program here, while the SED collects information that helps assess trends in doctoral education. Please complete both surveys, as they will help us learn about your experiences here and make needed improvements for future students.

People who graduated in the previous August or February, as well as people graduating in May, are all invited to participate in the annual Commencement ceremony. In March (following your graduation if you are an August or February graduate or preceding your graduation if you are a May graduate), you will receive an email with information about ordering regalia for Commencement. Once you have ordered, your regalia will be available to pick up in the Brandeis Bookstore in the week prior to Commencement.  You will also receive an email about ordering Commencement tickets, and information about locations and overall logistics will be available on the Commencement website.

Practical Support For Your Next Steps


The current policy is for students to retain their Brandeis email addresses indefinitely; however, it is a good practice to check your inbox periodically or set up your email to forward to a different account so that you do not miss any changes. To set up forwarding:

  1. Go to the Brandeis Account Management webpage.
  2. Click the "Manage my account" link.
  3. Click the "Mail & Directory Settings" link.
  4.  Click "Forward my mail off-campus" and then fill out the "Forwarding address" box.
  5. Finally, click the "Update My Mail Options" button at the bottom of the window.

Returning Materials to Brandeis

Please return any library materials by the end of your last semester. You can visit the library’s website for information about library services for alums. Please return any office keys to whoever you received them from.

Health Insurance

If you currently have the Brandeis student health insurance plan, it runs until August 14, 2023 at midnight. You should look into alternate health coverage now, as the process can take some time. Graduate students are on a student rather than an employee health plan, so they are not eligible to receive COBRA. If you need a Certificate of Health Plan Coverage to enroll in a new plan, please contact University Health Plans (contact information can be found on the University Health Plans website). The “Insurance Info for Graduating Students and Dependents” link on the UHP website provides additional information and will also direct you to the Massachusetts Health Connector where you may sign up for health insurance plans. Many of these plans start on the first of the month, so be sure to leave time to contact them.


If you need a copy of your transcript, please fill out a form through the Registrar's office.

A Special Note to International Students

You should contact the ISSO prior to completing your program to discuss your options.

Professional Support for your Next Steps

Visit our professional development website to learn more about diverse career paths, access career information about where recent alums are working, and find resources and templates for CVs, resumes, LinkedIn, informational interviewing, and more!

Professional development serves alums as well as current students. Schedule a one-on-one consultation with our team to talk through your next step in your career.

Join our alum network on LinkedIn to build your network!

You will automatically become a member of the Brandeis Alumni Association, which will allow you to stay connected to the Brandeis family. Check out the Alumni Association’s LinkedIn and Facebook pages for opportunities to connect with other alums in your field. As an alum, you can participate in clubs and groups, use the B Connect online network, and access additional alum benefits.