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Free Word and Publisher Downloads: Congratulatory Certificates for Graduations

written by: •edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 5/20/2011

While they certainly should not be treated as genuine diplomas, these congratulatory certificates are a thoughtful way to show your favorite graduate how proud you are. Templates for both Microsoft Word and Publisher are available.

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    Uses for These Templates

    There are many reasons why you might want to download and customize one of these congratulatory graduation certificates. For instance, you might wish to make one for someone passing the GED exam or reaching another educational milestone for which one does not traditionally receive any type of certificate or diploma. Alternatively, you might be an educator who wishes to award graduating students with special certificates for distinguishing honors, such as lettering in extracurricular activities or overcoming obstacles.

    No matter your intentions, you will find these templates simple to download and easy to use. The first page contains Microsoft Publisher certificates and Word templates are on the second page. Follow the Download Page link to download the template you want to use and then make it your own.

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    Graduation Achievement Certificate

    Black and Gold Achievement This certificate features an elegant gold gradient background with black lettering and embellishments, although you could easily change the color scheme to coordinate with your graduate's school colors or even her favorite hues. A black scrolled banner across the top of the certificate states, "Certificate of Achievement." Below this, it reads "Proudly presented to" followed by a black-bordered box in which you type the graduate's name. This is followed by the words, "Congratulations on your graduation!" along with lines to sign and date the certificate.

    Download Page: Graduation Achievement Certificate

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    Congratulatory Certificate With Diploma Design

    Congratulatory Certificate With Diploma Design This template is also understated yet full of meaning. The background features a pale blue scrolled diploma. Across the top of the certificate the words, "Congratulations Graduate!" are listed in bold blue print. Decorative boxes contain the words, "This certificate is awarded to" and the name of your graduate. A space near the center of the certificate reads, "In recognition of" so that you can list special honors or other details of which you are especially proud. Lines for your signature and the date complete this certificate.

    Download Page: Congratulatory Certificate With Diploma Design

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    Reach for the Stars Certificate

    Reach for the Stars The silhouette on this congratulatory certificate says it all. It features a graduate decked out in cap and gown standing on tiptoes grabbing a star from the sky. The message on this certificate reads, "Congratulations graduate! You grabbed the star you were reaching for." In addition, there are text boxes into which you can type the name of the graduate to whom the certificate is rewarded as well as two signature and date lines. The certificate uses the Publisher Waterfall color scheme in blues and greens, but of course you can choose a color that better suits your purpose or your graduate.

    Download Page: Reach for the Stars Certificate


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    Use Word to Make Certificates

    No one says you have to purchase an expensive DTP program to create professional, polished-looking publications. There are many publications such as graduation invitations, flyers and cards that you can easily create using Microsoft Word. The following templates for congratulatory graduation certificates were created using Word 2010, but they are compatible with Word 2007 and even 2003, provided you have installed the Office Compatibility Pack.

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    Chasing Dreams Certificate

    Chasing Dreams This certificate enables you to congratulate a special graduate while encouraging him at the same time. The background of this template features a washed-out image of a hand catching a shooting star with a net. The certificate reads, "Congratulations, graduate! Never stop chasing your dreams. This certificate is awarded to" followed by a text box into which you will type the graduate's name. There are also two signature and date lines with which you can officially mark the occasion.

    Download Page: Chasing Dreams Certificate

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    Scribbled Congratulatory Certificate

    Scribbled Congratulatory Certificate This certificate features a blue-tinted image in the background of a mortarboard cap and tassle atop a pile of books. Using one of the Artistic Effects available in Word 2010, the image appears to have been expertly scribbled onto the page. Centered across the top of the certificate are the words, "Congratulatory Certificate" in a sophisticated script. It goes on to state, "This certificate was awarded to" followed by a text box into which you will type the graduate's name. The template closes with, "Congratulations on your graduation" as well as signature and date lines.

    Download Page: Scribbled Artwork Congratulatory Certificate

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    Graduate Silhouette Certificate

    Graduate Silhouette Certificate The final template offered in this collection features the red silhouette of a graduate proudly clutching a diploma. The certificate is in hues of reds and blues, but you can modify this to use any color combination you choose. The silhouette has a shadow effect added to provide more depth and interest, and the words, "Congratulations graduate" appear in bright red in a large white box atop a larger blue box for even more eye-catching appeal. Customize the template with your graduate's name as well as your own signature and the date of the event.

    Download Page: Graduate Silhouette Certificate

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    References and Resources

    Microsoft Publisher

    Microsoft Word

    Screenshots provided by the writer.