Military and Veteran Honor Cords

Honor cord application is at the bottom of this web page.

KU recognizes student veterans, military students and ROTC students who have met certain academic thresholds with Military and Veteran Honor Cords to wear at graduation. 

These red, white and blue academic honor cords signify specific academic achievements of those who have made an unwavering commitment to their nation. 

This is a voluntary program. Students attending graduation must apply for a free cord once they have been approved for graduation.

Please note that we cannot guarantee that mailed honor cords will arrive before your ceremony.


Red, White, and Blue honor cord for military and veterans.


Who's eligible

  1. You must have applied for and been approved for graduation and be:

    • An honorably discharged student veteran, or

    • Currently serving military student (Active, Guard, Reserves), or

    • ROTC student who will be commissioning upon graduation

  2. Undergraduate students must also have an anticipated cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. You can use the GPA calculator to determine if your anticipated final semester grades positively affect your eligibility.

  3. Graduate students – GPA verification is not needed.

What we need to verify status 

  • If you're a VA education benefits user, we can verify your eligibility with your student ID number - please include in the form below

  • DD-214 if prior service. We recommend blacking out your SSN for privacy purposes

  • Most recent LES or valid military ID card if currently serving. Expired IDs and veteran ID cards cannot be used. If you wish to show an ID, for security purposes please show your ID when picking up your cord or we will set up a quick video appointment. Do not submit it via the online form.

Where/when to pick up cords

All Lawrence campus and online students will sign up for their cord using the survey below. The survey will become active each semester when the window to apply opens.

  • Spring 2024 graduates:
    • Regular pick-up will begin Friday, April. 5 during our regular open hours and more information on this will be sent to the email address you provide below. If you are in the local area, we ask you to pick up your cord to help us save on postage expenses.
  • Online graduates (regardless of campus): We can mail your cord to you if you are unable to pick up locally.
    • *If you are an online student who does not live in the area, fill out the request form below and do NOT mark yourself as an Edwards/Leavenworth student so you can complete the form.

The following do NOT need to fill out the survey:

  • ROTC graduates: You will get your cords from your ROTC instructor. You are also welcome to attend the Lawrence campus ceremony to receive your cord there.
  • Edwards Campus graduates: Beginning Friday, April. 5, you can pick up your cords from Lisa Browning. Reach out to her directly to schedule a time.
    • *If you are an online student who does not live in the area, fill out the request form below and do NOT mark yourself as an Edwards campus student so you can complete the form.
  • Leavenworth site graduates: Beginning Friday, April. 5 you can get your cords from the Fort Leavenworth office, 120 Dickman Ave. (bottom floor of the CDC) between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Or, you can pick up cords at the Leavenworth office in the TownePlace Suites hotel. Reach out to Sarah Weygand with questions.
  • KU Medical Center (KC, Salina and KUSM-W) graduates: Visit KUMC's page for more information.

Cords recycling option

If you do not want to keep your honor cord after graduation, we encourage you to recycle it by dropping it off at 345 Summerfield Hall (1300 Sunnyside Avenue). You may drop off during our open hours or place it in a designated bin inside our 24/7 lounge (your KU ID is needed to swipe into the lounge outside of normal hours and to swipe into Summerfield on the weekends).