Undergraduate Commencement
Tippie Graduate

May 2016 Commencement Information for Graduates

The following instructions will tell you what to expect before, during, and after the commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 14 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.


All graduates must wear a cap and gown, which will be available at the University Bookstore, University Capitol Centre, during regular business hours, three weeks before the ceremony.

Men are expected to wear shirts and ties; jackets are not required. Women are advised to avoid high heels, because you will be walking up and down stairs as you enter and exit the arena and when crossing the stage. Flowers should not be worn with caps and gowns or carried into the arena.

Beta Gamma Sigma members and TCOB Honors graduates will wear honors cords with their academic attire. Cords can be picked up in the Undergraduate Program Office, C140 PBB.


Traditional announcements may be purchased at the Levitt Center from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. on weekdays. New and graduating senior members of the Alumni Association receive 10 free announcements—call 319-335-3294 to join.

You may also purchase personalized announcements specifically designed with the University of Iowa's school crest and customized with your name, degree, major, time, date, and place of the ceremony. To order personalized announcements, go to www.iowalum.com/merchandise/graduation.cfm.

Class rings and diploma frames can be ordered through the University Book Store.


Tickets are not required.

Driving Directions

From I-80:

  1. Take exit #242/CORALVILLE.
  2. Turn South on 1st Avenue/Hayden Fry Way.
  3. Go south to the 2nd Street (US-6) intersection and turn Left.
  4. Turn Right on Hawkins Drive.
  5. Carver-Hawkeye Arena will be up the hill and around the curve to the left. Parking will be available in the lots to the west and south of the arena.


Parking is available in the Arena Commuter Lot (lot 75) and in the Dental Science Building Parking lot (lot 40).

Map showing parking lots for commencement


Graduates should arrive at Carver-Hawkeye Arena no later than 4:15 p.m. Proceed to the check-in to pick up your name card, which will be read during the ceremony.

Leave all personal belongings (coats, purses, cameras, etc.) with a family member so that nothing is carried into the seating area except your name card. Programs will be placed on each seat for you to keep after the ceremony.

Ceremony Details


At 4:30 p.m., you will be asked to line up for the processional with the students in your section of the alphabet. It is not necessary to line up in alpha order but you do need to stay within the assigned group. Please discard gum, food, and beverages, and turn off cell phones before the processional begins.

The ceremony begins with the processional promptly at 5:00 p.m. The entire ceremony will last approximately 90 minutes. UPO marshals will lead you to your seats. Sit down immediately when you reach your seat.


The ceremony begins with a welcome and introduction of the platform, comments from an invited speaker, and conferral of degrees. Next, the marshals will direct graduates to come to the stage one row at a time. You will hand your name card to a college representative who will read your name, then proceed across the stage to shake hands with officials, and exit the stage. Professional photos will be taken both off and on stage. A marshal will direct you back to your seat as you exit the stage.


At the conclusion of the ceremony, your marshal will dismiss each row in an orderly manner. You will proceed up the auditorium stairs and rejoin your guests on the concourse level of the arena.


You will receive a complimentary diploma cover the day of the ceremony. Diplomas will be mailed to your residing address after a final audit confirms that all requirements have been met. Diplomas will be printed and mailed approximately six weeks after the ceremony. Participation in the ceremony is not a validation of graduation.


Commencement ceremonies will be livestreamed on IowaNow.

Additional information for Tippie students and their guests is available on the Office of the Registrar's website.