Spring 2021 Commencement

March 1, 2021


Dear Iowa State Community,

I am pleased to announce Iowa State University’s intention to hold modified in-person Spring 2021 Commencement celebrations for the Bachelor’s, Master’s, Ph.D. and DVM graduating classes.

These decisions have been informed by our monitoring of COVID-19 on campus and in the community, as well as our experience with safely allowing limited attendance at athletic events where guests wear face coverings and practice physical distancing. While it is our intent to offer modified in-person commencement activities, we will change course if necessary and as conditions warrant to maintain the safety of our graduates and guests.

Bachelor’s Event. We intend for undergraduates to be recognized during a Cyclone Graduation Celebration at Jack Trice Stadium on Saturday, May 8. This series of separate events, organized by college, will be modified from the traditional commencement ceremony, but will include:

· A shorter-than-usual program to officially confer the degrees

· The reading of individual names as graduates cross the stage wearing academic attire

· Formal graduation photographs

We do not anticipate needing to limit guest attendance due to the large capacity and outdoor setting of the stadium. All graduates and guests will be required to wear face coverings and practice physical distancing. Start times for each of the college events will be announced in the coming weeks.

Master’s Event. We intend for Master’s graduates to be recognized in a similar celebration at Jack Trice Stadium on Friday, May 7, at 11 a.m.

Ph.D. and DVM Events. Commencement ceremonies for Ph.D. and DVM graduates will be held in-person at Hilton Coliseum on Friday, May 7 at 3 p.m. (DVM) and 7 p.m. (Ph.D.). These programs will also be modified, and guest attendance will be limited to ensure physical distancing. As for the Bachelor’s and Master’s events, all graduates and guests will be required to wear face coverings and practice physical distancing.

Additional information. More details and instructions for each event are forthcoming, including inclement weather alternatives for the Bachelor’s and Master’s events. The Registrar’s Office will communicate directly with candidates for graduation. Updates will be posted on www.graduation.iastate.edu as they become available. The official commencement program will be made available to degree candidates regardless of attendance.

The events outlined above will be limited to only those students graduating in Spring 2021 or Summer 2021, in order to safely accommodate graduates and guests. We remain committed to inviting Spring 2020, Summer 2020, and Fall 2020 graduates back to campus for a future in-person commencement when conditions allow, and we will provide additional information on that opportunity in the fall.

We know this past year has presented incredible challenges for you. We are proud of all of our students for their resilience and determination to continue their academic progress, and we look forward to celebrating safely in-person with our newest graduates this spring. I wish you all the best as you finish out the semester!

Wendy Wintersteen, President


This email was sent to all students, faculty, and staff at Iowa State.