The University of Iowa

Graduate Masters Commencement Ceremony

Friday, December 17, 2021 - 7:00pm Hancher Auditorium
Graduate College Stage and Crowd
Friday, December 17, 2021 - 7:00pm
141 Park Road
Iowa City, IA 52242

Doors will open to the venue one hour prior to the start of the ceremony. No tickets required.

President Barb Wilson and Associate Provost for Graduate Education and Dean Amanda Thein will deliver messages to students. Board of Regents, State of Iowa, member Nancy Dunkel will be in attendance. Ikram Basra, from Sargodha, Pakistan, will be the student speaker.

Order of Events

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you or a guest are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please use the contact information listed on this page. Accommodation requests must be emailed before December 14, 2021.

Katie Bottorff
(319) 467-4307

Watch Live

The ceremony will premiere at the scheduled time and day and will be livestreamed with captions enabled. The ceremony video will be uploaded to the University of Iowa YouTube channel after all ceremonies have concluded.

Ceremony Information

To be eligible to “walk” you must be a Summer or Fall 2021 degree applicant who submitted an RSVP in MyUI prior to the deadline (Sunday, November 21, 2021 at 11:59 PM). Summer 2021 degree applicants who participated in the Spring 2021 virtual ceremony will not be permitted to participate in this fall's in-person ceremony. Spring and Fall 2021 degree applicants will not be permitted to participate in Spring 2022 ceremonies. The deadline to RSVP to participate in this ceremony has passed and late-adds will not be permitted.

At this time, tickets are not required for fall Graduate College ceremonies.

Complimentary parking is available in Hancher Lot 55 for commencement attendees. Parking for persons with disabilities is available near the building entrance with the appropriate hang tag or license plate.

Graduates should plan to arrive no later than 6:15 p.m. at Hancher Auditorium, with their mortar board, tassel, gown, and hood. Graduates will enter through Hancher's main entrance and proceed toward Strauss Hall. Outside Strauss Hall, graduates will need to stop at the card table to pick up and fill out their name card. This is used by both the name reader and Flash Photography during the ceremony. Please check the card for accuracy and changes/corrections that may need to be made. Graduates should then proceed into Strauss Hall, where Graduate College staff and volunteers will assist them with lining up in the appropriate order. 

At 6:55 p.m., graduates will be led by a faculty marshal to the entrance to Hancher Auditorium.

At 7:00 p.m., guests will view the "Celebrating Iowa" video.

Following the viewing of the video, graduates will process to their seats on Hancher stage, as directed by the faculty marshal and Graduate College staff.

There will be a brief welcome by Associate Provost and Dean Amanda Thein.

Masters degrees will be conferred by President Barbara J. Wilson and Associate Provost and Dean Amanda Thein.

Graduates will be invited row by row to come forward and be recognized. Graduates will take their name card up with them, hand it to the person reading names at the podium, then proceed across the stage to be recognized by the Dean and the President. 

As graduates move from the stage back to their seats, they will have a professional photo taken by Flash Photography.

Once all graduates have been recognized, a student speaker will give brief remarks, followed by closing remarks from President Barbara J. Wilson.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, platform officials will leave the stage first. After the platform officials have cleared the stage, graduates will recess following the marshal.

In order to provide an environment in which graduates and guests all have an enjoyable experience, the following rules of behavior will be enforced at all ceremonies:

  • No alcoholic beverages of any kind
  • 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
  • Marshals and security staff will be looking for intoxicated persons. Inebriated students are not permitted to participate.

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

Graduate student apparel can be rented or purchased online at The deadline for renting apparel is Monday, November 22nd, at 10:59 PM Central Time. The deadline for purchasing apparel is Sunday, October 24th, at 11:59 PM Central Time. If you have questions, please contact Herff Jones at or (952) 447-4449. It is your responsibility to be sure rented apparel is returned to Herff Jones within two weeks of the ceremony. Apparel cannot be returned at the ceremony and must be shipped directly to Herff Jones using the prepaid shipping label included in your apparel box. 

Business attire is suggested but not required. Graduates are cautioned regarding their choice of footwear, as stairs and floor may be difficult to navigate. Wearing high-heeled footwear is not advised. Bags or purses may not be carried or left in Strauss Hall. Please plan to leave these with your guests.  

Decorating caps and gowns is not permitted. Flowers are not to be worn on gowns or carried in hand. Caps are to be worn with the tams or mortar boards horizontal and the tassel on the left. Tams/mortar boards should be worn during the Processional, Recessional, and while degrees are being conferred. However, they may be removed at other times.

There is return information included in the regalia box and also a prepaid return label. If you lost your prepaid label or did not receive one in your package, please use the link below to request a new label. Your confirmation number to request a new label begins with CPA and is found in your confirmation email. You may use any box to ship the regalia back, it does not have to be the box it was shipped to you in.