Des Moines University's 118th

Commencement Ceremony

May 25, 2018 at 10 a.m.

Ceremony Venue

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.



J.D. Polk, D.O., M.S., MMM, CPE, FACOEP, FAsMA, is the chief health and medical officer of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). He began serving in this position in November of 2016. Previously, he was dean of the Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Prior to his work at DMU, Dr. Polk was the assistant secretary (acting) for health affairs and chief medical officer of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), a post he assumed after serving as the principal deputy assistant secretary for health affiars and deputy chief medical officer.

Before joining DHS, Dr. Polk was the chief of space medicine for NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. He is the former state emergency medical services medical director for the state of Ohio and former chief of metro life flight in Cleveland. Dr. Polk is a Fellow of the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians and a Fellow of the Aerospace Medicine Association.

Dr. Polk received his degree in osteopathic medicine from the A.T. Still University in Kirksville, MO. He completed his residency in emergency medicine with the Mt. Sinai hospitals via Ohio University and completed his training in aerospace medicine at the University of Texas Medical Branch. He is board-certified in both emergency medicine and aerospace medicine. Dr. Polk holds a master’s degree in science in space studies from the American Military University, a master’s degree in medical management from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business and a master’s certificate in public health from the University of New England.

Dr. Polk is well published in the fields of emergency medicine, disaster medicine, space medicine and medical management. He is a clinical associate professor of emergency medicine at the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine. He has received numerous awards and commendations, including citations from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, White House Medical Unit, Association of Air Medical Services and the U.S. Air Force. He has received the NASA Center Director’s Commendation, the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, the National Security and International Affairs Medal and the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal.

.D. Polk, D.O., M.S., MMM, CPE, FACOEP
.D. Polk, D.O., M.S., MMM, CPE, FACOEP

Schedule of Events

Wednesday, May 23, 2018
8 - 2 p.m. BLS Training (Optional)
Olsen Center
3 - 4:30 p.m. So, now what?  Managing your Student Loans during the Transition from DMU to your Career
Student Education Center, Auditorium

Mandatory for DPT, MSPA Graduates who have borrowed financial aid

MHA, MPH, MSA, MSBS, PPDPT welcome to attend

 Evening Class Events (Optional)
Scheduled and planned by Class Officers
Thursday, May 24, 2018
7:30 - 8 a.m.

Continental Breakfast
SEC Commons

Registration for Commencement Activities
SEC Commons

Graduates will receive name cards, BLS certificates (if applicable) and gift from Development & Alumni Relations

8 - 8:30 a.m. Computer-Transfer of Ownership Procedures
SEC Auditorium

Mandatory for DO, DPM, DPT, and MSPA Graduates

8:30 - 9 a.m. Ceremonial Overview
SEC Auditorium Coordinated by Student Life

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

9 - 9:15 a.m. Benefits of the Alumni Association
SEC Auditorium
9:15 - 10:45 a.m. So, now what?  Managing your Student Loans during  the Transition from DMU to your Internship/Residency
SEC Auditorium
Mandatory for DO and DPM Graduates who have borrowed financial aid
9:30 a.m. Program Awards Ceremonies

Program Awards Ceremonies are for students and faculty within the program

DPT and PPDPT – Ruza Lecture Hall 2

11 - Noon Program Awards Ceremonies

Program Awards Ceremonies are for students and faculty within the program

DO – SEC Auditorium

DPM – Lecture Hall 1

MHA and MPH – SEC Student Lounge

Noon - 1:30 p.m. Picnic Luncheon
SEC Courtyard
Honors all graduates in the Class of 2018
1:30 - 2:30 p.m. Protecting Your Income: What You Need to Know Before You Graduate (optional)
Lecture Hall 1
1:30 - 2:30 p.m. Military Promotion Ceremony
Ruza Lecture Hall 2Ceremony and reception honoring graduates attending DMU on military scholarships
2:30 - 4:30 p.m. CPMS Clinical Affairs Survey and Conference
Friday, May 25, 2018
8:30 a.m. Doors Open
9:15 a.m. Graduates, Faculty and Platform Party arrive at Venue
10 a.m. 118th Commencement Ceremony
Iowa Events Center/Hy-Vee Hall

Information for Graduates