Commencement marks an important passage in every student’s academic journey—from student to graduate and now a lifelong Mount Mercy alum. Please join in celebrating our graduates’ hard work and success!

2021 Commencement Ceremony

Sunday, May 16, 2021 | Alliant Energy PowerHouse (formerly the U.S. Cellular Center)

Consistent with our Mercy value of commitment to our students and our contemporary COVID-19 concern for safety, we have had thoughtful discussions among the Commencement Committee, Pandemic Task Force, local public health officials, and our university Cabinet to proceed with plans for in-person Commencement. Our current reality reminds us that any decision we make today might have to be modified later. 

  • We will divide our graduating students into groups based on their program, resulting in multiple smaller ceremonies (Current Plan: 9:00 AM, 11:00 AM, 1:00 PM, and 3:00 PM. Specifics will be conveyed later.)
  • Students will walk across the stage and elbow bump instead of shaking hands.
  • Students will be physically distanced according to the most current safety protocols.
  • Students may invite family members who will sit in physically distanced spaces according to the most current safety protocols.
  • Faculty are invited to attend the ceremony at the time designated for their program.
  • All participants and attendees will be required to wear face coverings at all times. 
  • Following the ceremony, all attendees will be asked to promptly vacate the PowerHouse in preparation for the next ceremony.
  • For those not attending, each ceremony will be livestreamed.
  • RSVP and cap/gown information will be available in the coming weeks. 

Virtual Graduation Fair

Alumni Status

It’s easy to stay connected to MMU after you graduate, and we’ve named a few of our favorites below. Take our 3-question survey for a chance to win a gift card to Chipotle and your first set of MMU alumni apparel! We have big alumni friend-chip goals...

5 ways to stay connected to MMU

  1. Mentor or refer a student
  2. Volunteer at MMU
  3. Come back for Alumni Weekend on the Hill
  4. Be a guest lecturer/speaker for a Class
  5. Takeover the Alumni Instagram

 Visit for more ways to stay involved.

Guac is extra, but alumni events are always free...

Here are just a few you have to look forward to: 


  • Spring 2021

Graduation/Senior Week

  • Spring 2021

Alumni Weekend & Homecoming

  • September 24-26, 2021
  • Networking & Alumni Social Events (Virtual)
  • Various dates & times throughout the year

In queso not following us...

MMU Alumni is on Social Media

  • Students must have their balances paid, in full, to receive their diploma and official transcripts.
  • If there is an in-person ceremony, the Business Office withholds participation in the ceremony for past due balances.

In the Catholic faith, we firmly believe that God has a purpose for each of us and calls us to become our fullest self. As you move toward graduation and moving out of college, continue to remember that God has a plan for you and won’t leave you hanging.

This call is called a “vocation”. We all have one, but the way we live it out is different. Some are called to be married, some are called to be single, some are called to be priests, and some are called to be religious sisters and brothers. No matter where you are on your journey, there are resources to help! Feel free to talk with Michael Beard or Sister Linda in Mission and Ministry. If you are curious about religious life and/or priesthood, you can find more information here.

  • For students who borrowed federal student loans, the Department of Education requires that you complete Exit Counseling online at . The financial aid office will be providing additional instructions to the students that are required to complete Exit Counseling. If you have any questions, you may contact the financial aid office at .
  • Please call 319-363-1323 x4414 and pronounce your name exactly as you wish the commencement speaker to read it.
  • All graduates from the class of 2021 are eligible to participate in the May 2021 ceremony. This includes students who graduated in December 2020 and February 2021 and those who will graduate in May 2021, June 2021 and August 2021.
  • Each eligible student must apply for graduation at least two weeks before their graduation date.

There are many different opportunities to engage in service as you graduate. Here are just a few possible opportunities:

Mercy Volunteer Corps - Direct service to and with poor and marginalized communities both in the US and abroad.

AmeriCorps – Serve directly with nonprofit organizations addressing pressing needs within in the nation.

AmeriCorps State - Serve at local community-based organizations; service is primarily through     direct service. Full and part time, paid.

AmeriCorps VISTA - Serve through nonprofit agencies addressing issues related to poverty. Full   time, paid.

AmeriCorps NCCC - Live in a campus environment and serve in teams to meet the community needs. Full time, paid. 

To learn more about these various programs in Iowa, visit this link.

Peace Corps – This is hands-on, grassroots-driven, and long lasting service in 60 countries around the world.

Catholic Volunteer Network - Fosters and promotes full-time domestic and international faith-based volunteer service opportunities. There are resources and tools to browse 185+ programs.


The Student Conservation Association - Engages volunteers for 3-10 months in hands-on conservation projects in all 50 states, focusing on critical environmental issues.

Earth Corps - Brings young adults from the US and around the world to Seattle for environmental service and leadership development.


WorldTeach - A nonprofit organization that provides graduates with year-long teaching opportunities around the world.

City Year - Runs educational support programs in 20 cities nationwide.

The Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) - Renew and transform Catholic education, particularly in low-income and immigrant communities.

Teach for America - Catalyzes leadership to make educational equity a reality in America.

Match Corps - Full-time residential fellows program tutoring students in the Boston area.

Graduates, as you begin this next step in your career and life, we want you to remember that a sustainable future is possible. Each of us affects at least one of these 17 sustainability goals through our jobs and our lives. Make sure your work moves the goal forward.
Your actions make a difference. Be the change!


Frequently Asked Questions

All degrees are formally conferred during the virtual Commencement ceremony—also known as graduation. During the ceremony, the provost formally presents the candidates who have been approved by the Registrar's Office. (See Apply for Graduation tab.) The president then confers the degrees and admits new graduates to their degree’s "rights and responsibilities." Each student is then presented with a symbolic diploma from the president.
All degree candidates (bachelor's, master's, and doctoral) are encouraged to participate in the virtual Commencement ceremony, including those who earned their degree at the end of the fall and winter terms.

Students on track to graduate during the summer semester are invited to participate, however, their diplomas will not be available until they have successfully completed all classes.

All students planning to participate in Commencement must:

  • Apply for graduation through the Office of the Registrar
  • Meet financial obligations by 12 PM the Thursday before Commencement to receive your diploma and get your official transcripts

Diplomas will be mailed following graduation. Questions? Contact or 319-363-1323 x1584.