General and specific requirements for degrees may be altered in successive catalogs. A student is bound by the requirements of the catalog in force at the time of his/her admission; however, a student must complete all requirements within seven years or be subject to degree requirements of subsequent catalogs. The student who is required to or chooses to fulfill the requirements of a subsequent catalog must have his/her amended degree plan approved by the dean of the School of Health Professions.

SHP Commencement Exercise

Graduating Student Eligibility

  • All program directors must submit the Degree Authorization Form for each student to be eligible to participate in the commencement ceremony.
  • Students must be enrolled and in good academic standings to participate in the commencement exercise. A student who has withdrawn; been dismissed; or currently placed on probation may not participate in the commencement exercise.
  • Completion of SHP and program degree requirements are required to be eligible to participate in the ceremony.
  • If an ineligible student request to participate in the commencement exercise and the program director denies student's request, the student may appeal to the Dean.

SHP Commencement Exercise Information

  • Participation in the commencement exercise is strongly encouraged, however, participation is not a requirement for completion of a degree/diploma.
  • The location; date and time; rehearsal information; attendee parking; graduate photo; and family instructions will be provided to students and faculty by the Dean's Office in late June.
  • Personalization or alteration to the student cap and gown is prohibited for the commencement exercise.
  • School will provide sign language accommodation.

Application and Procedure for Graduation

  • Each student must order a Cap and Gown (from the graduation company) in order to participate in the commencement ceremony.
    Deadline: 2 months prior to the graduation date listed. Extras cap and gowns will not be ordered under any circumstances.
  • All students must complete the School of Health Professions Clearance form, prior to the commencement ceremony, in order for the Diploma to be mailed.
  • Student ID and Institutional materials must be returned to the Program Director.
  • All students must apply for Graduation via myUTH.
  • All students must satisfy all financial obligations (fines, fees, etc.) with the bursar's office.
  • The name that will be listed in the Commencement program is the students' legal name currently on file in the Registrar's office.
  • International Students must contact the Visa Office regarding clearance procedures and final process documentation.

Procedure for Visiting International Relatives Attending the Graduation

If you plan on inviting a family member that resides outside the U.S.A., please follow the steps below on "How to Request an International Visitor Letter For Your Graduation":

STEP ONE: All students will need to write down and submit the following information to the Dean's office so that we may prepare the appropriate letter.

  1. Student name Please use the official name on your VISA, SS Card, UT Health System-Registrar Office, etc. Your name must match records to avoid delays.
  2. Student phone number and email address.
  3. Program you are graduating from.
  4. Name of each family member Ensure names are spelled correctly to avoid delays.
  5. Home address where each family member resides outside the U.S.A. Please double check with the Embassy if you have questions to what address is acceptable to avoid delays.
  6. List your relation to the relative Examples: Jane Doe - Sister, Jack Doe - Brother, Jamie Doe – Mother.

STEP TWO: Drop off the request in the Dean's office or email your request to Dr. Trevino at All requests need to come from the student graduating. Please do not have family members emailing on your behalf.

STEP THREE: It will take approximately 5-10 business days to complete your request. You will be contacted when the letter is complete and ready for picked up. You MUST pick-up the original letter as it cannot be sent in the mail or as an email attachment.


Graduating with Honors

Based on cumulative grade-point average earned at the MD Anderson School of Health profession recorded the last day of the Spring Semester in the graduating year. All students meeting the requirements outlined below will be recognized at the commencement ceremony:

Magna Cum Laude 3.7 to 3.899 recognition with silver cords

Summa Cum Laude 3.9 to 4.0 recognition with gold cords

Outstanding Student of the Year
Recognition with a gold sash

Each program will select one Outstanding Student of the Year, however, all students earning an MD Anderson 3.8 GPA and rank in the top one-third of the class on July 15 are eligible for consideration.

Outstanding Student Assessment Criteria

The selected Outstanding Student:

  • exhibits outstanding leadership qualities,
  • is highly motivated to work within the profession,
  • is consistently reliable,
  • demonstrates excellent communication skills,
  • has an outstanding ability to work with others,
  • effectively works independently,
  • demonstrates a high degree of maturity, and
  • is an excellent example of MD Anderson's Core Values of Caring, Integrity and Discovery.

Selection Process and Criteria

  1. The Program Faculty will rate each student using the Outstanding Student assessment criteria.
  2. The Program Director will select adjunct, clinical, and/or non-primary program faculty to evaluate the students creating a 1:1 ratio with primary School of Health Professions Faculty.
  3. The average assessment score will be added to the student's July15th MD Anderson grade-point-average. The student earning the highest score will receive this recognition.
  4. In the event there is a tie, the Program Director will make the final decision.

Returning Student for Bachelor's Degree

A student who completes prerequisites within four years after completion of course work at MD Anderson's School of Health Professions and returns to obtain a bachelor's degree must meet with their program director to obtain permission to proceed with the pending requirements to graduate and receive a degree and diploma.