Students worry amid delay in delivering caps, gowns

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With graduation less than a week away, soon-to-be graduates at Florida A&M are concerned about not receiving their graduation packages, including their cap and gowns from Herff Jones.

Grads will take the stage Friday and Saturday at the commencement ceremony in Al Lawson, but the question is: Will they have their cap and gowns in time?

Herff Jones is supplying caps and gowns, announcements and other graduation items for FAMU’s 14 colleges and schools.

Some graduates ordered their packages from Herff Jones prior to spring break and still have not received them.

The last day to place an order for a grad package was March 25. Some students have received their caps and gowns without their announcements.

There are numerous students complaining about the lack of communication and the hold up for their orders.

Alea Mexile, soon to be a 2022 FAMU graduate, is upset about the delay of her package and expressed frustrations about her experience with Herff Jones.

“It is very disheartening that we must go through this experience as soon to be graduates,” Mexile said. “We have enough stress as it is to finish strong, now we must wonder where our cap and gown is, with little to no answers. I ordered my package back before spring break. I just want this weight lifted off my shoulders.”

According to Herff Jones via email there has been a delay with the graduation package orders.

“We apologize for the delay, appreciate your patience, and congratulate you on your achievement. For additional questions please reach out to our customer service team. Our team here at Herff Jones is working hard to fulfill your order quickly, but we wanted to let you know that there has been an update to your expected delivery date,” Herff Jones said.

However, when students contacted the customer service department at Herff Jones their experience wasn’t pleasant.

Chelsea Arnett, a graduating student, said the company struggles with customer service.

“My experience with Herff Jones was terrible,” Arnett said. “The customer service representatives were very rude and unprofessional. When I asked for a refund due to no communication on where my order was, they told me to dispute it with my bank. I don’t recommend anyone shopping with Herff Jones, instead purchase from the bookstore. FAMU needs to find another supplier for graduation regalia.”

“I had to keep calling to get to someone who wouldn’t send me a voicemail claiming they’re going to transfer me to someone who could help. Finally, someone gave me a refund, then they overnighted my cap, gown & hood. However, I couldn’t get my thank you notes or announcements,” she added.

For students who are worried that they won’t receive their cap and gown in time you can purchase them from the university bookstore. For additional information, contact the bookstore personnel at (850) 599-3070 or email