Diploma Notary/Authentication Process

By far the hardest step! We live in Pennsylvania, and my Master’s diploma was issued in Minnesota. I went to my University’s website and they had clear steps on how to get a notarized diploma (thank you MSU-Mankato). I followed the steps, mailed it and called to ensure they had gotten it. Again, by the grace of kind people, including the Registrar’s staff, they found a quicker and cheaper way to get my diploma notarized and sent back to me. What I didn’t know then, is that I would need it to get it authenticated by the Department of State office in Minnesota so I had to send it back to Minnesota a couple of days later. I UPSed it to ensure a quick return and my fellow Minnesotans did not disappoint. I had it back by the time we headed to the Embassy.

Joe’s diploma was a little different. He works at the place where it was issued and and a couple conversations to see what he needed to do got the job done. Thanks to my homeland folks and Joe’s colleagues, we saved some money on this step. I’ve broken down the cost later on, and you’ll see what it could have cost and by some exchange of politeness and kindness, we were cost-free.

The challenge:

  1. Diploma, notary, and Department of State in a different state
  2. Using original diploma
  3. People–one notary forgot to date it. The Department of State worker almost refused to authenticate it because of this small error we didn’t have any control over.

The solutions:

  1. As discussed, I sent it back to the Department of state. This was only discovered once I found out that PA Dept. Of State would only authenticate Pennsylvania issued notaries.
  2. Joe determined he would use the original. It would cost $75 dollars for a copy and we thought, we don’t need it any time soon. If he wants a pristine looking diploma, we’ll buy him one when that time comes.
  3. We were working with humans so mistakes happen. I stayed on top of people by calling them and asking annoying questions. One thing I have learned in this process is that it was better for me to be embarrassed by ‘obvious’ answers than to save face and not ask.

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