More than a month after commencement, UTRGV’s first graduates still have not received their diplomas.
“Two weeks passed and I had no transcript and there was no diploma,” said Michelle Rodriguez, who graduated Dec. 19 with a bachelor’s degree in communication. “So, what I did was I went again and I asked, ‘Hey, is there any way I can get the diploma at least?’ and they said, ‘Well, they should be coming in soon.’”
Rodriguez said she started asking fellow communication graduates if they had received their diplomas.
“None of us had gotten it,” she said. “We hadn’t received any type of email or mail that said your diploma is coming.”
Monica Venegas, who graduated with bachelor’s degrees in psychology and sociology, said the university was taking too long in providing official transcripts.
“I don’t know if it’s something to do with UTRGV, the way, you know, it goes because my friend, she graduated from [Texas Southmost College] a week before us and she just got [her transcript and diploma] like two weeks ago,” Venegas said last Wednesday. “I think it might be something with the system.”
In an attempt to find out why the diplomas are late, The Rider called the Registrar’s Office last Wednesday and was placed on hold for about 25 minutes. The Rider hung up.
UTRGV President Guy Bailey told The Rider diplomas are going to be sent within the next few weeks.
“Normally, they’re sent out at the end of January and this is because of the auditing process,” he said in a phone interview Thursday night. “So, remember that graduation is not until the week before Christmas and you have Christmas break and New Year’s, so by the time things are printed, they’re normally sent out at the end of January. This year, we had a delay in getting the printing paper. The supplier has been tardy in getting that to us, so we’re running about a week or so behind.”
Rodriguez said not having her transcript or diploma has made it difficult for her to find a job.
“We never heard anything about when [the transcripts or diplomas] were actually going to come in,” she said. “I lost out on two jobs already only because I didn’t have transcripts and I didn’t have my diploma. That’s a really big issue for all of us right now because employers are asking for copies of each and we can’t provide them right now.
“So, it’s kind of holding us back from actually going out and finding jobs, which is what the university, this new institution, promotes all the time. I just feel like they forgot about us, even though we’re the first class that they graduated.
I think they owe us an explanation or something, not just to leave us hanging here.”
Transcripts are available at the Office of the Registrar upon request, Bailey said.
The president said the university will send out a notice soon to students letting them know the status of their diplomas.
“They will be getting an email, some communication in the next day or so, explaining that the diplomas will be sent in the next couple of weeks,” he said.
Students having trouble obtaining their transcripts may call the Office of the President at 365-8779.