Ceremony Venue

Hy-Vee Hall

Iowa Events Center
Hy-Vee Hall

730 3rd Street
Des Moines, IA 50309

Tickets are not issued for this event. Graduates may invite as many guests as they please.

Additional information: Parking, children and special needs

Live Stream

Can't make it to the ceremony? A stream of the ceremony will be available right here. Watch it live Saturday at 10 a.m.

Watch the Live Stream

Message from the President

On behalf of the Des Moines University community, I am pleased to extend my heartfelt congratulations to the graduates in the Class of 2015. I also want to acknowledge the importance of family, friends and colleagues who have supported our graduates throughout the arduous and rewarding journey toward a post-graduate health degree. We hope to see many of you as guests at our ceremony on May 23 to celebrate your loved one’s milestone and to participate in the fulfillment of our academic mission. Realizing the importance of this ceremony to our graduates, the University offers open seating with no limitation on guest participation.

Of course, no academic ceremony would be possible without the dedication and commitment of the University’s faculty and staff. I thank each of you for your role in ensuring the success of our graduates. It truly is a proud time for everyone at our institution as we celebrate the successes of the next generation of health care providers.

Also on this occasion, Des Moines University will be welcoming back to campus graduates in our 25, 50 and 50+ anniversary classes. Truly, we look forward to celebrating with all on this hallmark of the annual academic calendar.


Angela L. Walker Franklin, Ph.D.

Schedule of events

This schedule is tentative. The University reserves the right to make adjustments, as necessary, based on attendance or room availability.

Thursday, May 21, 2015


BLS training

Munroe classrooms
9-3 p.m. Cap and gown distribution SEC
3-4:30 p.m.

So, now what? Managing your student loans during the transition from DMU to your career.

Mandatory for DPT and MSPA graduates. MHA, MPH, MSA, MSBS, PPDPT graduates welcome to attend.

SEC auditorium
Evening Class events  

Friday, May 22, 2015

8-9 a.m. Continental breakfast SEC
8-9 a.m. Registration for Commencement activities SEC
8:15 a.m. - 10 a.m. Cap and gown distribution SEC
9-9:30 a.m.

Welcome session and ceremonial overview

Mandatory for DO, DPM, DPT, and MSPA graduates. Graduates in other programs are welcome to attend.

SEC auditorium
9:30-10 a.m.

Computer transfer of ownership

Mandatory for DO, DPM, DPT, and MSPA graduates.

SEC auditorium
10 - 11:30 a.m.

So now what? Managing your student loans during the transition from DMU to your internship/residency

Mandatory for DO and DPM graduates.

SEC auditorium
10:30 - 11:30 a.m. DPT award ceremony AC LH1
Noon Campus picnic South courtyard and lawn
2 p.m. Military promotion ceremony and reception MEC
2-4 p.m.

CPMS Clinical Affairs survey and conferences

Mandatory for DPM graduates.

Tower 7th floor
6-7 p.m. Reception (all programs) Veterans Memorial Convention Center
7 p.m. Banquets Veterans Memorial Convention Center

Saturday, May 23, 2015

9 a.m.Graduates arrive Iowa Events Center Hall C - Skywalk Level
10 a.m. Commencement ceremony Hy-Vee Hall, Iowa Events Center

Hotel Accommodations

Find a place to call home for the weekend. Please indicate DMU Graduation when making your reservation before April 23, 2015 for reduced rates pending availability. All rooms are subject to state and local taxes (rates do not include taxes). Please feel free to check other travel websites that might have rates even lower than our negotiated rates! It will be a busy weekend in Des Moines- we encourage you to book your rooms early!



Michael T. Osterholm, Ph.D., MPH

Dr. Osterholm is the McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair in Public Health at the University of Minnesota and director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), a professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, a professor in the Technological Leadership Institute, College of Science and Engineering, and an adjunct professor in the Medical School, University of Minnesota.

He is also a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences and the Council of Foreign Relations. In June 2005 Dr. Osterholm was appointed by Michael Leavitt, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), to the newly established National Science Advisory Board on Biosecurity. In July 2008, he was named to the University of Minnesota Academic Health Center's Academy of Excellence in Health Research. In October 2008, he was appointed to the World Economic Forum Working Group on Pandemics.

From 2001 through early 2005, Dr. Osterholm, in addition to his role at CIDRAP, served as a Special Advisor to then-HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson on issues related to bioterrorism and public health preparedness. He was also appointed to the Secretary's Advisory Council on Public Health Preparedness. On April 1, 2002, Dr. Osterholm was appointed by Thompson to be his representative on the interim management team to lead the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). With the appointment of Dr. Julie Gerberding as director of the CDC on July 3, 2002, Dr. Osterholm was asked by Thompson to assist Dr. Gerberding on his behalf during the transition period. He filled that role through January 2003.

Previously, Dr. Osterholm served for 24 years (1975-1999) in various roles at the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), the last 15 as state epidemiologist and chief of the Acute Disease Epidemiology Section. While at the MDH, Osterholm and his team were leaders in the area of infectious disease epidemiology. He has led numerous investigations of outbreaks of international importance, including foodborne diseases, the association of tampons and toxic shock syndrome (TSS), the transmission of hepatitis B in healthcare settings, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in healthcare workers. In addition, his team conducted numerous studies regarding infectious diseases in child-care settings, vaccine-preventable diseases (particularly Haemophilus influenzae type b and hepatitis B), Lyme disease, and other emerging infections. They were also among the first to call attention to the changing epidemiology of foodborne diseases.

Dr. Osterholm was the Principal Investigator and Director of the NIH-supported Minnesota Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance (2007-2014) and chaired the Executive Committee of the Centers of Excellence Influenza Research and Surveillance network.

Dr. Osterholm has been an international leader on the critical concern regarding our preparedness for an influenza pandemic. His invited papers in the journals Foreign Affairs, the New England Journal of Medicine, and Nature detail the threat of an influenza pandemic before the recent pandemic and the steps we must take to better prepare for such events. Dr. Osterholm has also been an international leader on the growing concern regarding the use of biological agents as catastrophic weapons targeting civilian populations. In that role, he served as a personal advisor to the late King Hussein of Jordan. Dr. Osterholm provides a comprehensive and pointed review of America's current state of preparedness for a bioterrorism attack in his New York Times best-selling book, Living Terrors: What America Needs to Know to Survive the Coming Bioterrorist Catastrophe.

The author of more than 315 papers and abstracts, including 21 book chapters, Dr. Osterholm is a frequently invited guest lecturer on the topic of epidemiology of infectious diseases. He serves on the editorial boards of nine journals, including Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology and Microbial Drug Resistance: Mechanisms, Epidemiology and Disease, and he is a reviewer for 24 additional journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, the Journal of the AmericanMedical Association, and Science. He is past president of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) and has served on the CDC's National Center for Infectious Diseases Board of Scientific Counselors from 1992 to 1997. Dr. Osterholm served on the IOM Forum on Microbial Threats from 1994 through 2011. He has served on the IOM Committee on Emerging Microbial Threats to Health in the 21st Century and the IOM Committee on Food Safety, Production to Consumption, and he was a reviewer for the IOM Report on Chemical and Biological Terrorism. As a member of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), Dr. Osterholm has served on the Committee on Biomedical Research of the Public and Scientific Affairs Board, the Task Force on Biological Weapons, and the Task Force on Antibiotic Resistance. He is a frequent consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Department of Defense, and the CDC. He is a fellow of the American College of Epidemiology and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA).

Dr. Osterholm has received numerous honors for his work, including an honorary doctorate from Luther College; the Pump Handle Award, CSTE; the Charles C. Shepard Science Award, CDC; the Harvey W. Wiley Medal, FDA; the Squibb Award, IDSA; Distinguished University Teaching Professor, Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, UMN; and the Wade Hampton Frost Leadership Award, American Public Health Association. He also has been the recipient of six major research awards from the NIH and the CDC.

Information for graduates

The Pulse checklist that is referred to in links on the commencement website will go live in March.

Information by subject:

Cap and gown ordering

Cap and gown measurements for graduates in clinical programs were taken prior to leaving campus for your rotations. If we missed getting your cap and gown measurements, you will be contacted by Matthews Bookstore for your measurements. Please check your email and U.S. mail for any information.

MHA, MPH, MSA, MSBS and PPDPT graduates will receive information from Matthews Bookstore for providing measurements for caps and gowns.


Caps and Gowns will be distributed through Matthews Bookstore on Thursday, May 21 from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. and Friday, May 22 from 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m.

MPH, MHA and PPDPT graduates who will not arrive in time for on-campus distribution will receive attire the morning of the ceremony at Hy-Vee Hall.


Graduates should wear attire that harmonizes with the gown. Shoes and other visible attire should be dark colored. Men should wear dark shoes, socks and dark trousers. Women should wear dark colored clothing and dress shoes. The gown looks best when worn with a blouse that does not show through the V-neck. Absolutely no adornment is permitted on the gown or mortarboard. DMU is dedicated to providing graduate-level health professions degrees and our ceremony will compliment the professional status of our graduates.


The mortarboard is to be worn flat on the head with the pointed cap pulled onto the forehead. It should be parallel to the ground so that the tassel can fall straight down the side of the wearer’s face


Hooding of doctoral candidates is a cherished academic tradition at DMU. During this ceremonial ritual, the doctoral hood is placed over the shoulders of the graduates to signify the professional status attained by terminal degree holders. DMU’s ceremonial protocol provides for the on-stage hooding of all doctoral candidates. Candidates for the master’s degree wear their hoods throughout the ceremony. Based on academic protocol, a graduate wears only one hood representing the highest degree earned or the hood representing the primary academic program. Review the hooding policy here.

Customarily, the honor of hooding is reserved for faculty in recognition of their role in the education of the graduates for a terminal degree.

Graduates may keep mortarboards and tassel. The hoods have been rented, along with the robe. Graduates who wish to purchase a hood should contact Matthews Bookstore at 515-271-1613 or Matthews.Bookstore@dmu.edu.


The Academic Code is very clear on the subject of adornments. Other than the velvet trimmings and faculty colors, the code states, “Nothing else should be worn on the academic gown.” To maintain standards for a professional ceremony and to respect Commencement as a celebration for academic achievement, DMU does not allow any adornments, with the exception of honor cords, to be worn with the gown. Marshals will be instructed to remove and replace mortarboards with decorations, and to have graduates or faculty remove items of personalization, including jewelry, corsages, or other means of individualization.


At Commencement, graduates march in the gown appropriate to the degree they will receive. Candidates may wear only one hood at a time and it should be appropriate to the gown. For example, an individual receiving both a doctoral and a master’s degree at the same ceremony marches in the attire of the higher (terminal) degree and will wear only one hood, that of the higher degree. An individual receiving two master’s degrees wears only one hood, generally to indicate the primary or initial degree field.

As a DMU graduate, you are now a member of the Alumni Association, and the alumni office will be your first contact for future communications and questions. To familiarize yourself with the office, please check staff information, FAQs, and ways to stay connected with DMU on our website. We are proud to offer you many benefits, including alumni events locally and nationally, CME and global health opportunities, monthly and quarterly published communications, continued access to the Wellness Center and Library, and more! The best way for us to keep you up-to-date is to have your accurate information on file, so update your address now in your Pulse checklist. If you have questions, contact the Alumni Relations Office at 515-271-1463 or send us an email at alumni@dmu.edu.

Each class is honored at their own banquet, as are the alumni groups celebrating their 25+ and 50+ reunions.

How do I order tickets for the college banquets?

An order form will be available online in March.

Graduates can reserve one free ticket to cover their banquet admission, plus one free guest ticket. Additional tickets can be ordered at a cost of $25 each; children's meal tickets are $15 each. Graduates must reserve all tickets in advance, including those provided on a complimentary basis, by completing the order form. Please be aware that banquet orders must be accompanied with credit card payment.

What’s special about the banquet?

The banquets are a traditional event at DMU where the graduates gather prior to the ceremony to celebrate as a class. Family and guests are welcome. A program follows the banquet, during which the Dean announces the “Graduate with Distinction,” as well as other major awards. An outline of the banquet program for each college will be posted to the website in March. The final program copy for each college will be posted in May.

What is the dress standard for the banquets?

Because this is a very special celebration for graduates and their families, most dress in attire appropriately described as semi-formal. However, some guests prefer business professional dress. Men wear suits and ties. In previous years, tuxedoes dotted the dining room, but this is less likely with the more casual preferences of today's young professionals.

Download banquet programs:

  • CHS (coming soon)
  • COM
  • CPMS (coming soon)

Available in April, 2015.

Please update your address in the Profile section of My Pulse in Pulse.

Note: It is not necessary to bring your laptop to this session.

For graduates in the DO, DPM, DPT, MSPA, MSA and MSBS programs, ownership of your computer equipment will be transferred to you. To facilitate that transition, the Information Technology Services Department will provide instructions at a mandatory meeting on Friday. Specifically, you will receive instructions to (1) back up all your data and (2) run a DVD provided by DMU that will automatically update your software and remove your computer from the DMU network. Information Technology Services recommends that you complete the process within 15 days after graduation.

Note: Even though the DVD will install a current version of Microsoft Office and Windows for your laptop, you will not be able to transfer the software to other computers. If you wish to do so, Information Technology Services recommends that you purchase Microsoft Office at Matthews Bookstore prior to graduation to take advantage of the discounted student pricing. Once you graduate, you are no longer eligible for the student price.

Please be assured that Information Technology Services is working to make this process as smooth and simple as possible. Also, if questions arise, the DMU Help Desk will be available to provide technical support for 30 days following graduation.

If all financial obligations and all academic requirements have been met, graduates will receive their diplomas following the ceremony.

Diploma distribution will take place on the Skywalk Level of Hy-Vee Hall immediately following the ceremony, until 1:30 p.m.

At Commencement, students receiving two degrees (an MPH, MHA, MBS or MSA) as well as the DO, DPM, MSPA or DPT will march and be seated with the candidates in their full-time (primary) degree program. Recognition for the second degree will be announced as the graduate marches across the stage for the primary degree.

Students receiving dual MPH and MHA degrees will be recognized for both degrees as the final candidates to march across the stage for these programs.

DO, DPM, and DPT students will receive the doctoral hood on stage; MSPA, MPH and MHA students wear the Master's hood throughout the ceremony.

Based on academic protocol, a graduate wears only one hood representing the highest degree earned.

DMU is committed to ensuring you have the resources available to help you effectively manage your student loan debt once you leave DMU. DMU offers its upcoming graduates multiple ways to get help managing your student loans. Students with loan debt will be notified to complete the required online federal exit counseling.

The following services are available for you:

  • In-Person Debt Management Workshops:
    • Thursday, May 21 at 3 p.m.: Required Senior Loan Exit Interview for DPT, MSPA, MBS, MSA
    • Friday, May 22 at 10:30 a.m.: Required Senior Loan Exit Interview for DO and DPM
  • Debt Management Listserv (DML)
  • Toll-Free Access to Paul Garrard of PG Presents
  • Repayment Primers
  • Repayment Modules from the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Repayment Calculators

Complete information on these services can be found on the Financial Aid page of Pulse under the Repayment Box and PG Presents Tab.

Please feel free to contact the Financial Aid Office with any questions at 515-271-1470.

Graduation announcements will be available for order through the Herff Jones website, at herffjones.com/college/desmoines.

The announcements are available in a personalized style that includes your name in the copy as a candidate for a degree at the ceremony. To ensure efficient delivery, please provide your address at the time of delivery. If there is a question regarding your address within the time frame for delivery, please provide a permanent address.

If you have any questions, you are welcome to contact Matthews Bookstore at 515-271-7823 or Matthews.Bookstore@dmu.edu.

In order to be eligible for spring Commencement, all program requirements must be met as follows for each program:

  • DO, DPM, DPT: July 31 of the calendar year of graduation
  • MSPA: August 15 of the calendar year of graduation
  • MPH, MHA, PPDPT: All final grades submitted and posted to the transcript by the spring grade submission due date (one week following end-of-term) of the calendar year of graduation

DO and DPM students are reminded that all clinical paperwork must be submitted within one week of completion of the rotation. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that all paperwork - including the preceptor’s evaluation of the student - reaches the appropriate Office of Clinical Affairs within this time frame. Also, be advised to keep on schedule with rotations. All requirements must be completed prior to graduation to ensure your participation in the ceremony.

Your University account must be cleared in order to receive your diploma. Students with outstanding obligations will be notified by the Accounting Office.

For more information about requirements for graduation, please read the official Degree Candidate Approval Policy (PDF).

The academic attire worn at Commencement and other ceremonial events is reminiscent of the distinctive dress associated with academic processions and convocations of the Middle Ages. Students in English and European universities wore woolen and fur garments to stay warm in unheated, drafty stone buildings. Most scholars of the time were clerics in holy orders, and wore cloaks with hoods to cover their tonsured heads.

Today, academic attire indicates by style and adornment the highest degree earned, the major field of study, and the college or university attended by the wearer. Hence, graduates receiving degrees in medicine in today's ceremony wear a black robe with green chevrons and a green tassel. Similarly, the colors on the hood reflect the degree being conferred and the colors of the institution - Des Moines University’s colors are purple and white. This assignment of colors representing different faculties was standardized in the United States in the late 1800s. While the original colors represented different degrees in a general sense, over time more colors were developed to reflect the wider varieties of conferrable degrees. For example, white was assigned to arts and letters; red, a traditional color of the church, was assigned to theology; Green, the color of herbs, was adopted for medicine, and olive, as a variant of green, was given to pharmacy; and yellow gold, which represented the wealth which was produced by scientific research, was assigned to the sciences.

Colors for the various degree programs at DMU are listed below:

  • Osteopathic Medicine - Green
  • Podiatric Medicine - Green
  • Physical Therapy - Teal
  • Public Health - Salmon
  • Health Care Administration - Beige
  • Physician Assistant - Green
  • Anatomy - Yellow Gold
  • Biomedical Sciences - Yellow Gold

Presidential Regalia
The robe worn by Dr. Franklin was designed specifically for her inauguration and serves as her official academic attire for ceremonial events. Styled to be emblematic of our University and the president's rank and authority as our chief executive, the robe is a rich purple, the official school color, and it includes the University's seal on the velvet front facing panels. The sleeve trim is the customary black velvet, and there are four chevrons to designate a presidential robe. The front facings and sleeve trim are edged with gold cord. The President’s attire is completed with a beefeater tam to reflect the strength of our academic heritage and traditions.

The president's medallion serves as a visible display of the authority vested in the office of the University President. As a complement to academic attire, the medallion is worn by the President at Commencement and at other official ceremonies of the University. The University's medallion, designed in the Year 2000 to celebrate the new millennium, was struck in pure silver and plated with 24-karat gold. The center features a two-dimensional seal bearing the lamp of learning, to signify education, and the caduceus, to signify medicine. A chain of office honors the University's fifteen presidents.

Milestone medallions distinguish and honor DMU alumni who are celebrating significant anniversaries of their graduation. During the Commencement ceremony, members of the 50-year reunion class and earlier classes wear gold medallions, while members of the 25-year class wear silver medallions.

The Medallion Ceremony, hosted shortly before the Banquets on Friday at HyVee Hall, honors DMU alumni who, during Commencement weekend, are celebrating milestone anniversaries of their graduation. At the ceremony, members of the 50-year class and earlier classes are awarded gold medallions, and members of the 25-year class receive silver medallions. These graduates are invited to participate in Saturday's Commencement ceremony, wearing their medallions as symbols of their distinguished alumni status.

The presence of the mace is another sign of a ceremonial event. As used in academic settings today, the mace is modeled after a medieval weapon carried by a bodyguard to protect a king or person of high status. Carried in the Commencement procession by a member of the faculty, the mace is symbolic of office and authority adorned with the University seal. As is the tradition at Des Moines University, the president of the university's faculty organization is designated to serve as the Mace Bearer at official University ceremonies.

Grand Marshal
The Grand Marshal is an honored position conferred by the President upon a senior member of the faculty, the administration, or the alumni body. The selection recognizes the highest level of academic or service contributions for the benefit of the University. The Grand Marshal serves as the chief of protocol, leading the ceremonial parties in the processional and recessional, as well as announcing the official opening and closing for the Commencement ceremony.

For many years, the academic tradition of hooding has been a significant and cherished part of the Commencement Ceremony. DMU’s ceremonial protocol provides for the on-stage hooding of all doctoral candidates. Candidates for the master's degree wear their hoods throughout the ceremony.  During this on-stage ritual, the doctoral hood is placed over the shoulders of the graduates to signify the professional stature attained by terminal degree holders. Customarily, the honor of hooding is reserved for faculty in recognition of their role in the education of the graduates for a terminal degree. However, the University's hooding policy does allow direct line relatives (parents, grandparents, siblings and spouse) who hold a DO, DPM, DPT or MD degree the honor of hooding graduates.
To request a guest hooder access the form located in the Pulse checklist. The completed application must be submitted by March 15.

Students must maintain health insurance until they have completed their clinical rotations, as agreed upon between DMU and the rotation sites.  We recommend you maintain coverage at least until your residency begins. If you are covered by a University plan, your coverage extends through July 31, 2015.  If you have any questions, please contact Jerry Parker.

For many years, the academic tradition of hooding has been a significant and cherished part of the Commencement Ceremony.

During this on-stage ritual, the doctoral hood is placed over the shoulders of the graduates to signify the professional stature attained by terminal degree holders. Customarily, the honor of hooding is reserved for faculty in recognition of their role in preparing graduates for their terminal degree. Each college defines its procedures for the selection of faculty hooders.

Please be sure to print your health record from the portal or email the record to your own email address before you graduate. Your immunization and health records can also be obtained from the Des Moines University Clinic through Health Information Management (i.e., Medical Records) by calling 515-271-1706 or faxing a request to 515-271-1726.

If your name has a difficult pronunciation, or you feel it may be mispronounced, please complete the phonetic pronunciation form located in the Pulse graduate checklist. This will assist the reader who will be pronouncing your name from the stage at graduation. If you have requested a Guest Hooder, please provide a phonetic pronunciation if his/her name is difficult to pronounce. Phonetic pronunciation forms are due in the Registrar’s Office no later than April 7.

Graduates at Des Moines University can locate their graduation photos online by visiting www.gradimages.com/desmoinesuniversity

The following information is required to access your account:

  • Last name of the graduate
  • Graduation year

Graduates can reach the Customer Service Department by calling 800-261-2576, if you have any questions or need assistance.

All graduates who obtained student loans are required by the Department of Education to have an exit interview. Information on how and when to complete the DMU on-line exit interview will be provided to graduating students. The exit interview will contain information on loan amounts, rights and responsibilities, repayment options, loan consolidation, a repayment calculator and more. You will be required to provide information including references and expected employer. Students who received campus-based loans will be contacted with instructions on additional required on-line exit counseling. Students who do not complete the exit requirements will have their diploma placed on hold.

In addition, a consultant specializing in graduate student loans will provide the final segment of the required exit interview process at a session on Thursday, May 21, from 3-4:30 p.m. (Required: DPT, MSPA. Optional: MHA, MPH, MSA, MSBS, PPDPT) and on Friday, May 22, from 10:30 a.m. until noon (Requied: DO and DPM). See the Financial Aid - Student Loan Debt Management section for more information

Your student ID will remain active as long as you are a student. Once you graduate, the ID is disabled unless you request that the University’s Security Office activate your ID on an annual basis. The activation will be limited to the library and if a waiver is signed, it will be activated for the Wellness Center as well.

Share the Moment!

#dmugrad15 is the official hashtag of Des Moines University Commencement 2015. To share your graduation week experience, use #dmugrad15 on Twitter, Instagram and other social media sites. Also make sure to follow @desmoinesuniv.