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two graduates holding up diplomas

Illinois State's winter commencement ceremonies will be held December 14, 2019.

10 things every new Illinois State grad should know

Congratulations to the Class of 2019!  You have now joined the proud ranks of Illinois State University alumni—220,000 strong and growing. Before you walk across the stage, make sure you complete the quick, new grad survey for your free Alumni Association gift!  Complete it now, skip the line, show your verification email, and grab your gift when you check-in.  No time to complete the survey ahead of time? No worries, you will be able to take the quick survey when you check-in for graduation and receive your gift afterwards

The Alumni Association also wants to leave you with some quick tips on how to fully take advantage of your new status as a Redbird alum. So without further ado and in no particular order, here are the 10 things every new Illinois State grad should know.

Central Illinois Young Alumni

Central Illinois Young Alumni at a summer kickoff event.


Were you involved in a bunch of student groups on campus? Then stay involved as an alum too.

Illinois State alums have organized a long and growing list of affinity-based alumni networks, such as the young alumni networks in both Chicago and Central Illinois, Latinx Alumni Network, Black Colleagues Association, LGBTQA, and many college and department-based networks.

And if life takes you beyond Chicago and Bloomington-Normal, we have regional networks located all across the country! These alumni groups get together for Redbird Athletics games and watch parties, host special events, and raise money for student scholarships.


Learning never stops after you graduate. Your Alumni Association makes sure you can continue to grow and network no matter where you are in the world. Join the Illinois State online alumni book club where you will discuss topics covering lifelong learning topics or register for monthly Illinois State Insights, free webinars and livestreams that cover a variety of professional and personal growth topics (with some even presented by alumni like you).


Don’t let Homecoming be the only time you visit campus each year. (Homecoming 2020 is October 19-25, by the way.) Come back to visit anytime, and stop at the Alumni Center first to meet the Alumni Engagement staff and get the latest info on campus events.


Illinois State’s Career Center isn’t just for students. The Career Center offers various services to alumni to provide you with additional job-hunting help.


Many employers will ask to see an official transcript before hiring. To order your transcript online or in person, visit the Office of the University Registrar. Winter grades will be available on the transcripts beginning December 19. Choose the “Hold for Degree” option if you are earning a degree this semester and want your degree to appear on your transcript.


Insured graduating students who will not be enrolled in classes during the following term may continue coverage for one additional term. Insured full-time students graduating in December are eligible to purchase spring coverage by applying through until January 27, 2020. For more information on extending student insurance, contact Student Health Insurance.


Good news: As an alum, you’re officially a subscriber to the award-winning alumni magazine, Illinois State, sent out three times a year. Next issue comes out in April, but we can’t mail it unless we have your new address. Update your contact information today to receive the magazine and other special invites to alumni events. Also be sure to update your email (as your university email account will be deactivated six months after your graduation date) to receive university news updates and alumni event information.


Every gift counts, and we hope you consider making one following graduation to help future Redbirds reach their dreams like you. Join thousands of Redbirds on February 27, 2020, for Illinois State’s annual giving day, Birds Give Back. Look for more information to come via email and social media on how you can be a part of this one day for change.


This one’s easy. Stay plugged in to Illinois State campus life by following us on social media:

Check out the full list (and find your college or department) on our Social Media Directory.


By now, you probably have no shortage of Illinois State T-shirts in your dresser. But as you join the working world, it’s time to spiff up your collection of Redbird gear and get some stuff you can actually wear to the office or display that well-deserved diploma. Here are just some of the places where you can buy Redbird gear:

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I enjoyed studying at Illinois State University. As a Graduate student , majoring in Information Systems and Technology, I liked the reading hours at Milner Library, the Computer Labs for research and projects and the walks through the Quad..

As this year’s President of the Alumni Association Board of Directors, I’d like to congratulate you on your graduation and welcome you to our great Alumni Association! Go Redbirds!!