The University of Iowa

RSVP

Please Note

  • The RSVP for fall 2022 commencement is closed. Please contact your college with questions about commencement attendance. 
  • Only students who RSVP'd "I plan to participate" will be recognized at the ceremonies. 
  • Attending commencement is optional. Degrees are not distributed at commencements. Not attending commencement does not impact your ability to receive your degree.
  • Not all colleges hold commencement ceremonies in the fall. Please visit the commencement ceremonies page to see which colleges are holding ceremonies. If your college is not holding a fall ceremony, you may choose to participate in the spring. The RSVP portal for spring 2023 commencement will open in late February.

What is RSVP?

The abbreviation RSVP comes from the French phrase répondez s'il vous plaît, which means “please reply.”

In the case of commencement, we need to know if you are planning on participating in a ceremony! The RSVP process at Iowa is an opt-in system. Only students who RSVP "I plan to participate" by the deadline will be recognized at the ceremonies. 

The RSVP portal is located in MyUI within the Degrees/Graduation tile by clicking on commencement attendance. 

 

Step One: Apply for Degree

Graduation and commencement are two related, but separate processes.

Applying for degree will start the process of degree conferral and diploma delivery; RSVPing "I plan to participate" will allow you to be individually recognized during the commencement ceremony you attend.

You MUST apply for degree via the MyUI portal before you can RSVP for a commencement ceremony.

  • Please note: Many students think that once they've applied for degree they are automatically RSVP'd for the commencement ceremony, this is not true.

 

Step Two: Tell us your Plans!

The Commencement at Iowa team chose to utilize an opt-in based solution for the RSVP system. Students must RSVP "I plan to participate" via the RSVP portal located in MyUI within the Degrees/Graduation tile by clicking on commencement attendance to be included. Students are NOT automatically enrolled into the RSVP system. Students must take direct action to be included in the ceremonies. 

  • Please note: There is an opt-out feature in the RSVP system, but this does not mean anyone has been automatically enrolled. This is only meant to indicate a student's intent not to participate. We highly encourage students to choose an option one way or the other; it allows us to better allocate our resources. 

 

Step Three: Verify Information

The RSVP system in MyUI is tied directly into our student information system which will pull the most up-to-date information we have on file. Students who wish to participate will choose standard or preferred name (where applicable). To ensure the highest possibility that your name will be pronounced correctly during the ceremony, all students who RSVP "I plan to participate" will be required to provide name pronunciation information. Guidance for name pronunciation is available.

Step Four: Add a Photo! (Optional)

The RSVP system allows students to upload and crop a photo to be used on their individual recognition slide. Submitting a photo is optional. Slides are for personal use and are not included in the in-person ceremonies.

If you've RSVPd by the deadline, you will have the ability to upload a photo. The deadline to submit a photo is December 3, 2022. If you encounter difficulty uploading your photo, it's possible the file is too big. Please try resizing your photo and attempt to upload again.

Things to note about photo submissions:

  • photo should be of the graduating student and only the student
  • student should be the focus of the photo
  • use a device larger than a cell phone to verify photo quality
  • colleges will individually approve or reject each photo submitted. If a student's photo is not approved, the student will be contacted directly by their college.

Commemorative slides are for personal use and will not be included during in-person commencement ceremonies. 

Step 5: Submit Your RSVP!

When filling out the RSVP, students must provide all required information before their RSVP response is saved. If any required information is missed, a message will pop up indicating what required information is needed before their RSVP can be saved.  

After submitting the RSVP, students can edit their response information until the extended RSVP deadline on November 15..

Emails will be sent to the student's UI email address when an RSVP is initially submitted and when/if an update is made to the RSVP. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Please see below for answers to questions we typically receive.

If you do not see the information you're looking for, or if you have any other questions, please contact UI-commencement@uiowa.edu.

  • Students who have submitted a degree application for the current session and one session after the current session can RSVP for commencement in MyUI if the RSVP is open.
  • If your degree was conferred during a fall session and your college does not hold a fall ceremony, you are eligible to participate in the next spring ceremony and will have access to the RSVP in MyUI.
  • If your degree was conferred by the Graduate College during a fall session, contact the college coordinator to inquire about eligibility to participate in a spring commencement.
  • If you will apply for degree in a future session for which the degree application is not yet available, please contact your college coordinator to discuss participation eligibility. 

RSVP responses will no longer be accepted after the RSVP deadline. 

Please visit the Ceremonies page and click on the link for your college to determine if tickets are required for guests. 

Students will only see one RSVP link in MyUI, but they will respond for each ceremony individually. If a student wants to participate in both ceremonies, they can copy their first response into the second response, or they can enter different information (such as a different picture).

Yes. An email from UI-commencement@uiowa.edu will be sent to the student’s UI email address when an RSVP is initially submitted and when/if an edit or update is made to the RSVP.

Additionally, RSVP response information can be confirmed in MyUI in two ways:

  1. A timestamp will appear near the top of the RSVP form after submitting your response. This timestamp will remain even if a student leaves the screen or logs out of MyUI. It will only change if a new response is recorded.

image shows commencement attendance submission confirmation message when the RSVP is saved.

    2. Your RSVP response will be recorded and visible on the Commencement Attendance Panel directly below your degree information. Response information can be updated until the deadline.

Image shows RSVP confirmation message on the student's commencement panel in MyUI