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COMMENCEMENT 2024 INFORMATION

It is time to celebrate the achievements of our graduates! We are excited to announce that we will be hosting our annual Commencement at Secrest Auditorium on May 9, 2024, at 6 p.m. For family and friends unable to attend, check out the Facebook Live Stream. Also, from May 5-11, the Muskingum County Courthouse will be blue for photo opportunities with your regalia and family and friends. This website has all the information for our grads and special guests.

Wednesday, May 8

  • 3:30 p.m. – Rehearsal
  • 4:30 p.m. – Grad Picnic (see details below)

Thursday, May 9 – Click here for the Commencement Parking Guide.*
*The construction on I-70 is ongoing. You can stay up-to-date on the I-70 construction and ramp closures here.

  • 4:30 p.m. – Theatre Seating Opens (for guests)
  • 5 p.m. – Grad Line-Up (for graduates)
  • 5:50 p.m. – Theatre Seating Closes (for guests)
  • 6 p.m. – Ceremony Begins 
  • Following Commencement – The Graduation Gauntlet 
    Graduates will walk through a celebration tunnel where faculty and staff applaud and cheer. The Graduation Gauntlet, along with photo opportunities, will take place in the basement of Secrest Auditorium immediately following the ceremony. This will conclude the special day.

About photography:

  • From May 5-11, the Muskingum County Courthouse will be blue for photo opportunities for graduates.
  • Photo taking during the commencement ceremony is permitted.
  • A professional photographer not affiliated with the college will take photos of students as they walk across the stage. GradImages, Inc. will then contact you with package purchase options a week or two after the ceremony. Order information to come!

2024 Commencement Speaker
Dr. Karen A. Stout

Dr Karen Stout Commencement Speaker

Dr. Karen A. Stout is president and CEO of Achieving the Dream (ATD), leading a national network of community colleges focused on whole-college transformation that directly addresses inequitable outcomes for students. She was named the American Association for Women in Community College’s Woman of the Year and one of Diverse: Issues in Higher Education’s Leading Women, Washington Monthly’s 16 most innovative higher education leaders, Washingtonian’s 500 most influential people in 2023, and Ed Tech’s 30 higher education IT influencers to follow in 2023. She is the recipient of the Robert Zemsky Medal for Innovation in Higher Education, among many recognitions.

Dr. Stout serves as chair of the Belk Center for Community College Leadership and Research Advisory Board at North Carolina State University, as co-chair of the University of Maryland Global Campus Doctorate of Management in Community College Policy and Administration Advisory Board, and is a member of the Community College Research Center Presidents Advisory Board, Common App Board of Directors, and College Promise National Advisory Board. She also represents Achieving the Dream on the Washington Higher Education Secretariat, participates as faculty and mentor for the Aspen Rising Presidents Fellowship and Aspen New Presidents Fellowship, and has been a presenter for the League of Innovation Executive Leadership Institute since 2005. In 2022, Dr. Stout was nominated by President Biden and confirmed by the Senate to serve a six-year term as a member of the National Council on the Humanities.

Before joining ATD in 2015, Dr. Stout was president of Montgomery County Community College. Upon leaving the college, the Board granted her President Emerita status and named the student success center in her honor.

A frequent speaker and writer, Dr. Stout focuses on strategies for enhancing student success, equity and completion; accelerating and scaling innovation; advancing next generation metrics; and launching a new era of community college fundraising.

Music Performed by Dr. Laura E. Schumann

Dr. LauraDr. Laura E. Schumann is the Music Director and Conductor of the Southeastern Ohio Symphony Orchestra (SEOSO) and a Professor of Music at Muskingum University. She is a multi-award-winning and internationally acclaimed violinist, arranger, and conductor. Schumann is noted for her unique and original family/children’s programs, incorporating differing musical styles, educational components, exciting visual and interactive concerts, and an out-of-the-box contemporary yet sophisticated approach to programming and audience development.

ASL Interpretation by Bethaney Brown

ASL Bethaney BrownBethaney Brown, our American Sign Language Interpreter, is a Zane State alumni. She began the path that led her to an interpreting career at Zane State/ Muskingum Area Technical College, completing her Associate degree in 1993. Bethaney tested and became certified at the national interpreting certification (RID) level in 2003. In 2008, she completed her BSS from Ohio University. She completed her M.Ed in 2016. The majority of her 21 years of interpreting have been in the education field. She is currently employed as a Sign Language Interpreter with the Department of Homeland Security but continues to freelance interpret in the community. Bethaney has come full circle in her career and is now an adjunct professor at Zane State College teaching American Sign Language.

May 8, 2024 at Secrest Auditorium:
3:30 p.m. Grad Rehearsal with Grad Picnic to Follow

It is time to celebrate the 2024 graduates! Rehearsal begins promptly at 3:30 p.m., so please plan to arrive at Secrest on time to ensure you have all of the information for the big day. Immediately following, a picnic celebration takes place in the Secrest Auditorium parking lot. Here is an event map for your reference: Grad Picnic Map. Campus will be closing at 4 p.m. so faculty and staff can celebrate with you! Here are some event  highlights:

  • Free Food
  • Live Music Remote by WYBZ 107.3
  • Cap Decorating
    Bring your cap to decorate! ⁠Materials will be provided. You are welcome to bring additional supplies to create your perfect cap.
  • Photo Booths
  • Career Services: The Final Destination survey can be taken to let us know of your plans after graduation. You’ll be entered to win an iPad after completion. (click here to take in advance)
  • Alumni Association: Alumni shirts will be available for $15.
  • Campus Bookstore: Regalia will be available if you need to exchange for a different size as well as ZSC merchandise for purchase!
  • Foundation: Scholarship recipients who maintained their award and are in good standing will receive a medallion to wear on the zipper of their graduation gown at commencement.

If you plan to participate in the commencement ceremony, please follow these instructions. 

Review Your Petition Email Confirmation

Once you complete the online petition for graduation, you will receive an email letting you know whether it was successfully submitted. Be sure to review and save the email confirmation. Reply if there are any errors.

Update Your Contact Information

A current address is required for the mailing of your official diploma and alumni mailings. Update your information by contacting the Registrar’s Office at registrar@zanestate.edu

Digital Tickets

On Monday, April 22, 2024, at 8 a.m., graduates will receive an email from the Registrar’s Office (registrar@zanestate.edu). Each graduate is authorized to select up to six seats. The window to reserve seats will close at noon on May 7, 2024. Reminder, this is a first-come, first-served process. Seats will fill up fast. Note there is accessible seating available. Please reserve seats for those who require assistance in a wheelchair.

Ticketing will close at noon on Wednesday, May 8, 2024. On Thursday, May 9, 2024, ticketing will reopen for those who requested extra tickets. To request additional tickets, a link will be posted here on April 22 (please note there is no guarantee that additional tickets requested will be fulfilled).

Guests will be required to present a ticket on their cell phone or a printed copy. Graduate candidates are not required to present a ticket to be admitted and participate in Commencement. Children who are three years old or younger who are seated on a lap are not required to have a ticket.

Purchase a Cap and Gown

Commencement regalia is available for purchase now at The Campus Bookstore or at the online shop. Available regalia include caps, gowns, and tassels. Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) regalia will also be available for purchase. Student ID is required to purchase Honor and/or PTK regalia. 

All participants must wear a black cap and gown. Your tassel color will reflect your program. Caps, gowns, and tassels are available for $38.65. Gold Honor cords (for those who are eligible) are $14.92. These prices do not include tax. 

Confirm Your Name

Make sure your name is spelled correctly before we print the commencement program and your diploma. An email will be sent to your ZSC email account with a Graduate Candidate List. View and proofread your name, program, and graduating term. If corrections are needed, reply to the email by April 22.

Resolving Outstanding Obligations

Diplomas and transcripts will not be released to you until all account holds are resolved. This includes debts to the college, library fines, and incomplete financial aid exit counseling.

  • Resolve financial holds with the Business Office. Email businessoffice@zanestate.edu if you have any questions or need assistance. 
  • Complete Financial Aid Exit Counseling at studentaid.gov. This is required by law for students with a Federal Stafford loan and your official transcript will be held until you complete this process. Email financialaid@zanestate.edu if you have questions or need assistance. 

Receiving Your Diploma

The Registrar will review and verify your graduation requirements at the end of the semester when all grades have been finalized. Diplomas and certificates will be mailed to graduates with no account hold approximately six to eight weeks after the end of the graduation term to the address on file. Multiple attempts to mail diplomas will not be made; diplomas returned to the post office will need to be picked up in person at the Registrar’s Office.

Note: Students are not official graduates until the successful completion of the graduating term. An official transcript from the College is the official testimony of a conferred degree.