Information for Graduating International Students

Family Attendance at Graduation Events

International students whose family members are applying for visitor visas to travel to the US to attend the graduation ceremonies can request an invitation letter in support of these applications from International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) via iPenn.

U.S. citizens whose family members are applying for visitor visas to travel to the US to attend the graduation ceremonies should contact the Office of the University Secretary (1 College Hall, Room 211; 215.898.7005) for an invitation letter.

Post-Completion OPT

International graduating Wharton seniors* applying for post-completion OPT should take the following steps:

  • Step 1: Contact your assigned academic advisor to update your Academic Planning Worksheet in Penn InTouch. Your worksheet must clearly indicate your degree completion status for your OPT request to be processed.
  • Step 2: Follow instructions on ISSS website to apply for OPT.

ISSS will process your request once you have completed the above steps, and any questions should be directed to ISSS at that point.

 * Dual-degree students should contact their home school advisor for OPT recommendations.

Graduation Verification

Students who plan to work in the United States upon graduation and are applying for an H-1B visa should note the following policies and procedures related to graduation verification:

  • Students graduating in May 2019 will be able to obtain their final transcript or a letter verifying their graduation beginning June 10, 2019 if:
    • All required coursework has been successfully completed.
    • All grades have been recorded.
    • All other degree requirements have been met, resulting in the posting of the degree conferral date on the transcript.
  • The official degree conferral date for May 2019 graduates is May 20. Degree posting will occur between May 21 and June 7. Due to the large number of students being audited and cleared for graduation, including a large number of international students, the Wharton Undergraduate Division will not provide graduation-verification letters prior to June 10 and before the above conditions have been satisfied. See notes below on:
    • How to expedite the graduation verification process and request an official transcript should your degree be posted before June 10
    • Types of letters May 2019 graduates CAN request at this time
  • Dual-degree/coordinated-dual-degree students must be cleared for graduation by BOTH schools in order to have their degrees conferred and their graduation verified. Dual-degree students must contact their home school for verification (coordinated dual-degree students may contact the schools designated below), or follow the transcript-request process to have their official transcript sent to their employer.
    • Huntsman—COL
    • LSM—COL
    • M&T—SEAS
    • Nursing & HCMG—NURS

How can you expedite the graduation verification process?

Make sure you complete all of your course work on time and have no incompletes on your transcript.  NOTE: Any individual grade changes made after class grades are submitted will delay the posting of your degree.  Please keep this in mind if you need to discuss a grade change with an instructor.  No grade changes will be permitted after your degree is posted.

If you are completing a minor, make sure this has been declared. If you have already declared your minor but have made changes to the courses taken for fulfillment of this minor, be sure to have these changes approved by the respective academic department.

IMPORTANT: Starting May 21, keep checking your academic record (unofficial transcript) in Penn InTouch. When your degree is posted, you will notice a “Degrees Awarded” category at the top of the academic record. As soon as you see this posted, you can request a copy of your official transcript from the Registrar’s Office and have that sent to your employer.  This is official verification of your degree completion at Penn. More information on the transcript-request process is available online.

What types of letters can May 2019 graduates request prior to June 10?

If an employer requires verification of your student status at this time, the Wharton Undergraduate Division can provide the following types of letters where applicable:

  1. Letter verifying expected graduation date
  2. Letter verifying completion of concentration requirements and expected graduation date. Please note that completion of the concentration means passing grades must be earned and posted for the four courses being used to fulfill the concentration requirements and the concentration GPA must meet the minimum 2.5 GPA requirement.
  3. Letter verifying completion of degree requirements for the bachelor of science in economics and confirmed enrollment in spring 2019 course work to complete additional curricular options (e.g., second concentration, minor). Please note that completion of degree requirements is not the same as graduation. If you are continuing in course work this spring, you are not “graduated” even if you have otherwise completed your degree requirements. Refer to graduation verification information above.

To request a letter, students must meet with an advisor in the Wharton Undergraduate Division (G95 JMHH) to update their Academic Planning Worksheet, and then meet with Mei Long, the ISSS liaison advisor, to review available options. You can make appointments with your assigned advisor and Mei via the Online Appointment Scheduler.


For questions or concerns related to visa status, please visit International Student and Scholar Services at 3440 Market St., Suite 370, or contact them at 215.898.4661.

For questions or concerns related to graduation verification, please contact Xiumei(Mei) Long at