Arriving at the Arena

Doors will open at 5:30 p.m.

Graduates should arrive no later than 6:00 p.m. and should be wearing their cap, gown, and tassel.  Gowns should be zipped.  Caps are to be worn with the mortarboard horizontal and the tassel on the right side.  University of Iowa student organization stoles or cordons are permitted.

*Desired attire:  Comfortable, professional, safe, and black shoes (no flip flops).  Graduates will be walking up and down steps.  Men: black pants and a tie; jackets are optional.  Women: dress/skirt or black pants. 


Personal Items

Make arrangements to leave coats, purses, and other personal items with a family member or friend.  You should not have anything in your hand other than your name card when the processional begins and throughout the ceremony.  No chewing gum is allowed.


Name Card and Line Up

Upon arrival, report to the name card table located outside of the Strauss Hall.  A Radiation Sciences staff member will give you the name card that you completed when purchasing apparel at the University Book Store.  Be sure to indicate the correct pronunciation of you name on this card as it will be handed to the faculty member who announces your name as you cross the stage.

After picking up the name card, you are to assemble in Strauss Hall.  As the time for the procession approaches, you will be asked to line up according to the number printed on your name card. A staff member will be there to provide direction. The procession will begin precisely at the listed start time.


Ceremony Seating

Your marshal will escort you to a designated seating area in the front of the auditorium. You should stand until your row is full and then be seated.  A welcome address, several brief speeches, and conferring of degrees will follow.


Presentation of Graduates

Graduating students will be invited to come to the stage to be recognized individually.  Your marshal will lead your group to the stage.  Take your name card with you, hand it to the person reading names at the microphone and proceed across the stage.  Receive the diploma cover with your left hand and shake hands with the University of Iowa officials with your right hand.  A photo will be taken of you and your program director in the center of the stage.  Before returning to your seat, you will be directed back stage briefly for a professional photograph. You will return to the opposite end of your original row of seats, cross to your original seat, and be seated.

Following the closing remarks and processional of stage dignitaries, candidates will begin to recess following them in an orderly fashion.


Expectation of Graduates

Commencement is the culminating event of University study for students who choose to attend.   An appropriate and dignified academic atmosphere is absolutely expected so that you, your family, and other guests may enjoy this important gathering.

The following rules of behavior will be enforced:

  • No decorated caps, gowns, or shoes will be allowed.
  • No alcoholic beverages are permitted.  Staff, faculty, and security will be looking for intoxicated persons.  Inebriated students are not permitted to participate.
  • Inappropriate dress and costumes worn under gowns will not be allowed.
  • Cell phones must be turned off or silenced in the graduate seating area.
  • No flowers, purses, gifts, balloons, or bags will be allowed in the student seating area.

With everyone’s cooperation, this occasion will become a proud and happy memory of your academic achievement at the University of Iowa.