How to Properly Accept a Diploma & Who Even Hands It To You

Handing Out Diplomas

The day has come, and it is time for you to graduate; from picking up your gown to decorating your grad cap, this is sure to be a happy time.

You deserve it because you have worked so hard for your graduation ceremony to become a reality. While walking the stage is an essential part of this commencement exercise, there are still many things to expect.

Who hands out diplomas at high school graduation? Usually, they are handed out by your chancellor, school principal, dean, or another distinguished person in your school. That is why it is essential to know how to take them properly without being disrespectful.

Learn how to walk off the stage and get your diploma properly through this short post. It is essential to nail this to not come off as disrespectful to the people handing out the diplomas.

Commencement Exercises

The culmination of education is one of the significant events and transition points for many students, teachers, and parents.

It is the perfect time for students, parents, and teachers to celebrate their hard work and accomplishments. Many students take pride in having met the graduation requirements that their schools established.

Parents get to celebrate this king of accomplishment with their children, teachers, and school administrators. These ceremonies serve as a transition point for the graduating class’s members who will follow different paths, including higher education, military, and the world of work.

There is no greater recognition of any graduating student achievement than high school graduation.

Many school diplomas are handed out to graduating seniors. The speakers selected for this event are usually community dignitaries, alumni, and other students.

The valedictorian will be the one who will speak for their fellow students. Many schools have strict attendance for graduation rites, so you need to make sure to check with your school and see if there will be limitations in the number of people to invite.

How to Properly Accept a Diploma

Whether you are graduating from middle school, high school, college, or even a university, accepting your diploma is the most memorable and proud moment of your life.

It is natural to be anxious about it, as you will be in front of a big crowd, and you typically get your picture taken. It is normal to be clumsy at all times, but it is essential to relax and take pride in your achievements.

Here are among the steps you can take to get to the stage with pride and dignity:

Nailing the Basics

The first thing you should do is walk onto the stage with pride and confidence, stand up straight, keep your chin up, and do not slouch. Walk with your confidence and take pride in this momentous day of your life. You also need to mind your footing and make sure you do not trip on your gown.

If you ever received any instructions about standing up with your row simultaneously, follow them properly to avoid issues.

Sometimes many schools will have you hold onto a name card or name pronunciation card. If you have this kind of procedure, make sure to hand the card to the proper usher when the time comes.

Eye Contact

It is essential to have proper eye contact with the presenter. It can be your dean, your school principal, or one of your distinguished persons.

This way, you’re showing some respect. You also want to avoid looking at the floor or keeping your head down. This is because you might have some family or friends taking pictures of you every step of the way.

Remember to smile all the time because you’ve done your best to get to this point.

Proper Diploma Placement

Take the diploma in your left hand; then, you can shake the presenter’s hand using your right hand. Once you approach the presenter, make sure to reach out with your left hand to take the diploma.

As the presenter hands you the diploma, use your right hand to shake hands. Remember to reach gracefully; do not just grab the diploma and hold it at your side.

While you are on the stage, keep the diploma raised after you accept it and shake your presenter’s hand. If you wear any dangly bracelets on your right hand, make sure not to wear them for the ceremony or wear them on your left hand instead.

Flawless Exit

Continue to watch your step as you exit the stage because it is easy to lose focus and feel like you are all set once you have your diploma.

Always remember that there is still an audience out there. You don’t want to trip or fall while walking off the stage. Continue to mind your surroundings, keep your head up, and walk with confidence.

Know the Tassel Change

The tassel is very important, as the tassel on your cap has substantial symbolic meaning. It symbolizes your transition from a student to a graduate.

Some schools and colleges will have you move your tassel when you receive your diploma. Some commencement exercises have their presenter do it for you, while some have all the graduates proceed with the tassel change in unison after they all receive their diplomas.


Overall, when it comes to handing out diplomas, it depends on how your school handles it. Usually, the dean is responsible for many colleges, while for many high schools, it is the principal.

When getting your diploma, just make sure to follow your school guidelines and procedures so that you won’t get in trouble afterward. Once you have your diploma, you are in for a new journey in your life, so enjoy the moment and celebrate.

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