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The end is really just the beginning – my experience graduating from Charles Sturt

The end is really just the beginning – my experience graduating from Charles Sturt

Jordan's graduation.

The Charles Sturt graduation ceremonies commence in September. Jordan has graduated not once but twice with Charles Sturt University. He is the ultimate expert of graduation and tells us everything you need to know about the graduation process for students including the difference between conferrals and graduation ceremonies.

Written by Jordan Treloar

After many years of study, exams, tutorials, lectures, sleepless nights and hard work, there is nothing more satisfying than finally getting to walk across that stage, draped with that official black gown and wearing that black mortar board/graduate cap, signifying you are successfully graduating from university.

Take it from me, I have graduated twice.

Jordan Treloar at his graduation ceremony 2021.

Now I say that not to brag, but to show just how much of a privilege it is.

To be able to move forward in life knowing that you have successfully achieved something that not many people get to do and hopefully, it is a sign that you will get to follow your dreams in society and be able to make the world a better place.

I have been at Charles Sturt University since 2017 and have completed a double degree in Journalism and Sport Studies, along with a Bachelor of Exercise Science (Honours).

I am currently in my second year of my PhD.

Some say the university can’t get rid of me and it can be the same for those who stay on and continue studying as a postgraduate student.

For the majority however, the graduation ceremony is the end of a chapter and the start of a new one, as they enter the workforce armed with their degree, a huge amount of knowledge and life experience in their portfolio.

The graduation stage, Bathurst 2021.

Graduating from Charles Sturt University, or from any university or other tertiary organisation for that matter, is a very big deal and is rightfully the end goal for many students.

Once you finish all of your subjects with the required marks, you are officially eligible to graduate.

One important thing to note is the term ‘conferral’ and its relationship with the graduation ceremony.

The ‘conferral’ date is the date that you officially graduate from university.

A list of all eligible graduands (students who fit the requirement to graduate) is given to the Chancellor for conferral who then approves the list of awards and your name is therefore on the list to graduate.

The graduation ceremony naturally occurs afterwards and is a celebration of your success to which you and a few guests are invited to.

The ceremony is not compulsory because you will be able to use your new qualifications immediately after your conferral date, which is the date you officially graduate from the university.

Once conferred you’ll get a digital copy of your documents as well as a hard copy testamur sent to you in the mail.

So, while the days of you receiving your degree specifically during your graduation ceremony are relatively over, if you are able to attend, the graduation ceremony is a very important event to be a part of.

I attended both of mine on the Bathurst campus, which was important to me having lived on campus prior to the pandemic, surrounded by my family who had also been a massive support throughout my years of study at Charles Sturt University.

I got suited in my gown (use of gowns are complimentary on the day but you can purchase it if you’d like to) and cap (this is free to keep) and joined the queue of my fellow graduates and then one after another we got to walk up onto the stage and shake hands with the Vice-Chancellor and have a picture taken.

Jordan and his mum at the Bathurst 2022 graduation ceremony.

In that moment, I felt that I had finally completed the hard work that I set off to do years before.

Not only do you alone get to graduate, but there is a big sense of pride collectively because you also have the opportunity to graduate with other students you went to class with.

Whether it be a big group of students or very small (I was one of only two students from my degree class in 2020!), there is a great sense of honour that we all achieved this together.

The graduation ceremony is a very unique experience and for most people it only happens once.

So once you are there, make sure you enjoy it and soak it all in.

It is genuinely a once in a lifetime opportunity, not only to reflect on where you have been and to thank those who have been on the journey with you, but also to look to what’s next, because that is something that is very exciting.

But in saying that as well, one bonus is that you get to keep your cap.

I have both my caps sitting next to my desk along with my degrees so when I look up from my laptop after studying hard, I get to remember back to those special days and see how far I have come since then.

To those who are yet to graduate, I wish you good luck for the next little period while you toil away at the end of your studies, because your graduation ceremony is approaching very quickly.

Enjoy the day you graduate and get to walk across that stage adorned in all that attire, because I and all the other Charles Sturt University alumni salute you.

The end is really just the beginning after all.

Jordan throwing his graduation cap in the air in 2022.

A final note.

A big thank you to Jordan for writing such an informative blog on the Charles Sturt University graduation process. We wish you all the best with your PhD studies.

If you have a graduation story you wish to share or a Charlie blog idea, get in touch at

We look forward to reading your thoughts and ideas!

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