The University of Iowa

Carver-Hawkeye Arena

1 Elliott Dr
Iowa City, IA 52242
Carver Crowd, Floor, Stage, and Scoreboard

Fall 2021 Ceremonies for Carver-Hawkeye Arena

Carver-Hawkeye Arena Information and Policies

Carver-Hawkeye Arena has several commencement related policies that graduates and guests should be aware of.

Doors to the arena will open one hour prior to the start of each ceremony.  Plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the start of your ceremony.

Guests use South and West doors.

Graduates only may use East doors for express entry. Graduates are not required to enter through the East doors but it is highly recommended. 

Please Note: Traffic delays should be expected at all venues. Areas surrounding Carver-Hawkeye Arena will likely be congested with traffic from other campus events; please plan accordingly. 

Public Safety officials will search any purses or bags brought into the building. Everyone will be asked to open their coats or graduation gown for visual inspection.

No backpacks, large bags, packages, wrapped gifts, balloons, or outside food and beverage are allowed at Carver-Hawkeye Arena during this event. No air horns or alcohol are permitted.

There is NO PUBLIC ELEVATOR USAGE available during commencement. Full Public Safety policy can be found below.

Public Safety Seating Policy at the Arena for Commencement

Guests with physical disabilities who have a Disabilities Parking Permit (plate, placard, or sticker) will be permitted to park in lot 46, adjacent to Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Public Safety officers will be restricting entrance to this lot, to only those guests with these state issued permits. From lot 46 guests should enter the West doors.

Additional accessible parking spots will be available in the Dental Visitor Lot (Lot 33) 

Seating for guests is accessible from the upper concourse level, which is at ground level where you will enter. Guests with disabilities or limited mobility can find seating in the Feller Club Room. This room is equipped with large television screens and commencement ceremonies can be watched live from here. No food or beverage will be permitted in this room.

Guests with disabilities are also welcome to view the ceremony from the upper concourse level. Wheelchair and scooter spaces can be found in sections K – N on this level. Space is limited so we ask that guests seat themselves and two companions in this area. Guests should provide their own wheelchair if needed.

A sign language interpreter will be on-stage to interpret the ceremony.

Seating at Carver-Hawkeye Arena is designed to allow emergency evacuation through the exits on the upper concourse and/or the floor tunnel. Because the floor tunnel may become blocked by a fire or other obstruction during an emergency, the university requires that attendees with mobility issues not be seated on or near the floor; they must be seated in the Feller Club Room or on the upper concourse level. During a fire or emergency, elevators may not function and floor-seated attendees unable to navigate stairs might not have an exit pathway. Floor seating is generally reserved for graduates, faculty, and special guests. Concourse seating is available for all other attendees.

During a UI commencement at the arena, elevator use may be limited to staff and special event participants, such as faculty or graduates at a graduation ceremony. This is to prevent persons with mobility issues from using the elevator to access the floor, only to be trapped there in the case of a fire or other emergency.

The full policy can be found on the Department of Public Safety Website.

Carver-Hawkeye Arena Evacuation Policies

Named for the late Roy Carver, a long-time supporter of the University of Iowa, Carver-Hawkeye Arena, one of the 25 largest university-owned facilities in the nation, opened in January of 1983 and underwent a multi-million dollar facelift that was completed in September, 2011.

Detailed Arena Information