It’s always been my goal to be forward thinking in terms of what our students need and deserve. We have been using electronic transcripts for a number of years now. In the digital world we live in, portable credentials make perfect sense to be able to offer our students this next level.
This year graduates will not only receive a printed version of their diplomas but can obtain a digital copy, as well.
Bridgewater State University is the first state institution to provide free, certified electronic credentials known as a CeDiploma or CeCertificate.
“It’s always been my goal to be forward thinking in terms of what our students need and deserve,” said Registrar Joe Wolk. “We have been using electronic transcripts for a number of years now. In the digital world we live in, portable credentials make perfect sense to be able to offer our students this next level.”
All graduates will receive an email that contains a link to download the digital diploma once it becomes available.
It is expected to take about 4-6 weeks from the end of the semester for the digitals credentials to be issued, according to Assistant Registrar Sarah Sharkey.
Those graduating in May can expect their digital diplomas to be available in middle to late June.
“As soon as they are ready, we will make them available and get them out as quickly as possible,” Sharkey said.
This new initiative officially launched in January, with December 2022 grads being the first to benefit.
Of the 150 grads who have so far claimed their e-credential, none report any issues, Sharkey said.
There are a variety of reasons why e-diplomas are so desirable.
“First, it’s free and helps them have access to another portable credential. It allows them to get that information to a potential employer sooner. They can use it to help them stand out on social media platforms, like LinkedIn,” Wolk said.
It also helps to cut down on diploma fraud.
Each diploma displays a unique barcode that verifies it’s authentic.
“A potential employer can type in the validation code on the diploma, and it will show the specifics, that it’s all true,” Wolk said. “This is the future in making it easier, so students won’t need to jump through hoops to be verified.”
“It’s also nimble,” Sharkey said. “It allows you to be immediately responsible. You can email this to potential employers, and they can verify it right away.”
The CeDiploma has another major upside for international students, or those looking to work overseas.
In the United States, a college transcript serves as the official record, but abroad, the diploma is recognized as the official record, Wolk said.
For now, because of platform capabilities, only graduates from December 2022 and moving forward can take advantage of the program.
Wolk hopes students will sign up, as it’s another way to show off their BSU pride.
“Students should be proud of their achievements, and this allows them to showcase that in another way. We are always trying to think of ways to help our students stand out and CeCredentialshelp do that,” he said.
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