December Commencement


Welcome to Commencement Events for the Undergraduate and Graduate Class of 2019

This site will be kept up-to-date with information. The University looks forward with immense pleasure to hosting graduates’ families and friends for commencement activities. Congratulations, graduates!

Thursday, December 12, 2019 (3:00 p.m., Commencement Ceremony begins)

1:00 p.m.
Check-in for Graduates Opens
Heritage Center 304A (see details below)

2:00 p.m.
Commencement Doors Open
John and Alice Butler Hall, Heritage Center, McCormick and Bennett streets
Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis – non-ticketed.  No food or beverages are allowed in John and Alice Butler Hall. 

2:55 p.m.
Procession Begins
A bagpiper will lead the procession into John and Alice Butler Hall.

Inclement Weather 
Commencement will take place at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 12, unless weather forces the University to close. There will be no make-up date for this event. Please consult this website for any weather-related announcements.

3:00 p.m. 
Commencement Ceremony Begins
John and Alice Butler Hall, Heritage Center

The event will also be streamed live. Please CLICK HERE to watch the ceremony live. On-demand viewing will be available after the event.

Commencement Celebration

Graduates and families - please plan to join us for the Commencement Celebration as we welcome you into the the UD Alumni Family!

4:00 - 6:30 p.m.
Hotel Julien Dubuque| River Room | 200 Main Street, Dubuque, Iowa 52001

For more information and to RSVP, please visit:

Additional Commencement Information

The Graduate Hooding Ceremony is a special recognition for graduates receiving a master of business administration (MBA), master of arts in communication (MAC), or master in management (MM). All candidates will be individually recognized at the Graduate Hooding Ceremony. As with Commencement, all faculty and students will wear academic regalia. The Graduate Hooding Ceremony is for graduate students only. It does not replace Commencement. The Commencement Ceremony, held immediately following the Graduate Hooding Ceremony, includes graduate and undergraduate students and is the official conferring of degrees. The hooding of master’s candidates prior to Commencement is an honored and special occasion at University of Dubuque. For many participants, it symbolizes the culmination of graduate studies and the degree recipient’s transition from student to colleague.

12:30 p.m. - Graduates are requested to check-in at Blades Hall
1:00 p.m. - Graduate Hooding Ceremony begins

Beginning Wednesday, November 20, undergraduate students may stop into the lower level of Babka Bookstore to pick up their cap, gown, and tassel for Commencement Ceremonies. It is not necessary to pre-order. We will have every height and size available when you get your apparel, and they are yours to keep. The cost of apparel is included in your graduation fee.

Beginning Wednesday, November 20, graduate students may stop into the lower level of Babka Bookstore to pick up their cap, gown, and tassel for Commencement Ceremonies. The cost of apparel is included in your graduation fee, and they are yours to keep. These items must be ordered prior to Friday, October 11. Please refer to the email you received from Margo Ketels

Monday and Thursday:  8:30 a.m. – 5:45 p.m.
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday:  8:30 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.  

Congratulations, Graduate! Here is some important information regarding the 3:00 P.M. Commencement Ceremony on Thursday, December 12, 2019.

  • Check-in starts at 1:00 p.m. in Heritage Center, Room 304A.
  • Please enter Heritage Center through the Grace Street entrance located by Mike & Betty’s Ice Cream Shoppe and Sparty’s Convenience Store.
  • Take the steps on the right to the third floor to check-in with the Office of the Registrar in Room 304A. You will will receive further instructions and have your photo taken.
  • Please only bring what you plan to wear/carry with you in the procession. Staff cannot secure and are not responsible for personal belongings left in room 304A.
  • No food or drink are allowed in John and Alice Butler Hall.


  • Each graduate will receive a diploma cover from UD President Jeffrey F. Bullock at Commencement. Graduates who have met all degree requirements will receive their diploma by mail.
  • Students who have not met their academic requirements for graduation will receive an email from the Office of the Registrar.
  • Students with an outstanding college account balance will have their diploma held in the Office of the Registrar until their account is cleared by the Student Accounts Office.

General parking is available on the University of Dubuque campus in the following locations and on adjacent streets:

  • Finley Lot at Finley and West streets
  • University Park Drive Lot at Bennett Street and University Park Drive
  • Pearl Street Lot adjacent to the corner of Pearl and McCormick streets
  • Lot across from Hardee's at the corner of McCormick Street and University Avenue

Students and guests are reminded not to park in roped off or posted No Parking Areas.  For people having to park distances away, shuttle services will be provided between University of Dubuque parking lots and Heritage Center.  

While the amount of Handicapped Parking spots will be increased for this event, parking is on a first-come first-served basis. A reserved seating section will also be available to accommodate Commencement guests who have special needs.  Reservations are required for the Special Needs Seating section.  

Click this link to complete the Special Needs Seating Reservation: Special Needs Seating. A sign language interpreter has also been contracted to provide “signing” services at the ceremony.

LifeTouch Photography will take a photograph of each student with his/her diploma during the check-in process in room 304A. LifeTouch Photography will also take a photograph of each student receiving his/her diploma cover from the UD President during the Commencement Ceremony. LifeTouch Photography will also take photographs before and after the ceremony. To view LifeTouch Commencement images, visit

For those traveling to Dubuque and planning to stay overnight, we recommend you call early to reserve a hotel room. For information on local hotels and attractions, please feel free to visit the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce website at‌ 

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us!

Commencement Ceremony: Office of the Registrar l 563.589.3748

Graduate Hooding Ceremony: Christina Stringer | 563.589.3246

Commencement Celebration: Katie Kraus | 563.589.3161