Iowa State to celebrate fall graduates

President Wintersteen congratulates student at commencement

AMES, Iowa – Iowa State University will honor an estimated 1,941 students who are completing degrees this semester during two ceremonies Dec. 17-18, both in Hilton Coliseum.

Students completing bachelor's degrees will be honored Saturday at a 1:30 p.m. event. Alumna Cara Heiden, retired co-president of Wells Fargo Home Mortgage in Des Moines, will give the commencement address. U.S. Banker magazine has listed Heiden, a 1978 graduate in accounting, among its "25 most powerful women in banking" multiple times throughout her career.

Honorary degree

During the undergraduate ceremony, university leaders will award an honorary Doctor of Science degree to Herbert Allen (Al) Myers, founder and president of Ames-based Ag Leader, for his achievements as an agricultural engineer, inventor, innovator, entrepreneur and global pioneer in precision agriculture.

Faculty members from the agricultural and biosystems engineering department who nominated Myers for the honorary degree noted, "He clearly is the father of yield monitoring, and his technology is credited with changing the face of world agriculture."

Graduate College ceremony

An estimated 107 doctoral and 196 master's students will be recognized during the graduate commencement ceremony Friday at 7 p.m.

Lisa Schulte Moore, professor of natural resource ecology and management and associate director of Iowa State's Bioeconomy Institute, will address the graduates. This fall, she was one of 25 individuals to receive a MacArthur Fellowship – sometimes referred to as a "genius grant." Fellows have demonstrated exceptional creativity in their accomplishments and are selected for the fellowship's potential to facilitate future creative work.

Schulte Moore's research focuses on the intersection of agricultural systems that meet global food demands and strategies for protecting the environment. Due to her team's pioneering research, farmers in more than a dozen states have added prairie strips to their agricultural fields to reduce nutrient runoff to waterways and provide habitat for wildlife.

Both commencement ceremonies will be livestreamed (see sidebar for links), seating is unlimited and tickets are not required.

College convocations

Preceding the university ceremonies, colleges will host special events Friday and Saturday to recognize their graduating students. Most of the college celebrations will be livestreamed as well.

Friday, Dec. 17

  • Agriculture and Life Sciences, 10 a.m., Hilton Coliseum and livestream, for undergraduates
  • Human Sciences, 2 p.m. Stephens Auditorium and livestream, for undergraduates
  • Design, 5 p.m. (3 p.m. reception), Design auditorium and livestream, for all graduating students
  • Business, 4 p.m., Hilton Coliseum and livestream, for all graduating students
  • Engineering, 4-6 p.m., 220 Scheman and livestream, for graduate students
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, 7 p.m., Stephens Auditorium and livestream, for undergraduates

Saturday, Dec. 18

  • Engineering, 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. start times, various campus locations, by department, for undergraduates

Iowa State students who finish their studies during summer term may choose to participate in either the May or December graduation ceremony. An additional 84 students who finished their degree work last summer – 54 doctoral or master's candidates and 30 bachelor's degree recipients – will participate in this weekend's events.