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 March 1, 2024 for May 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 March 22, 2024 for May 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. At the Master’s level, a student who is on track to complete all of the requirements of their degree by the end of the summer term may walk in the May Commencement ceremony. At the PhD level, all requirements of the degree (including dissertation defense, revision, submission, and acceptance by the graduate school administrator) must be completed prior to walking in the May Commencement ceremony; for 2024, these requirements must be completed by May 6.

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

Email and Other Digital Services

Graduating students will retain their Brandeis email accounts for approximately seven months following their graduation date. To set up email forwarding from your Brandeis account to another email account:

  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.

Please keep in mind that if you hold a faculty or staff role, either while at Brandeis or after graduating, your account will be closed when you leave the institution. This does not apply to part-time student roles.

Graduating students will also receive information about the alum portal My Brandeis Gateway. This resource enables alums to update contact and employment information, search the alum directory, and submit class notes.

You will lose access to LATTE approximately 120 days after graduating and to Workday approximately a year after graduating.

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 and a library resources for alums guide. Please return any office keys to whoever you received them from.

Other On-Campus Services

If you have a parking permit, it will run through the end of the academic year you got it (ending on August 31).

Health Insurance

If you currently have the Brandeis student health insurance plan, it runs until August 14, 2024 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.