Information for Parents


Information for Parents

Dear Buena Vista University Parents:

This is always a wonderful time for the Buena Vista University campus community as our seniors look ahead with great anticipation to completing their studies and graduating to a new phase of their lives filled with exciting opportunities for successful careers and personal growth. We are proud of the accomplishments of your soon-to-be graduate, as I am sure you are.

In preparation for the May 23, 2015 Commencement ceremonies at our Storm Lake campus, we are providing the information below as an overview of the schedule and services throughout the weekend. I hope you will use this letter as a reference while you make plans to celebrate your student's special day.

Schedule of Events

Saturday, May 23, 2015

  • Baccalaureate—Schaller Memorial Chapel, 10:30 a.m. All graduates are invited to sit with their family and friends at the service. Academic apparel will not be worn at this service.
  • Commencement Brunch Buffet —Dows Grand Ballroom, Harold Walter Siebens Forum, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. All graduates and guests are invited to a special brunch served in honor of the BVU class of 2015. The price for the meal is $10; the price for children under 6 will be $6. Tickets for the brunch buffet may be purchased at Sodexo Foodservice during office hours (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.) through Friday, May 22, from the site location where your graduate is  taking classes, or from 9-11 a.m. on Saturday, May 23, in the foyer outside Anderson Auditorium or at the door. I encourage you to have your graduate purchase tickets in advance to ensure that Commencement day runs as smoothly as possible.
  • Commencement Ceremony—Siebens Fieldhouse, 2:30 p.m. Graduates should be at the location of assembly for the Commencement procession by 1:30 p.m. Graduates have received letters informing them of these locations. The Commencement procession will begin to move through the Victory Arch at 2:15 p.m. and enter the Siebens Fieldhouse at 2:30 p.m.
  • Post-Commencement Reception—immediately following the Commencement ceremony on the east lawn of the Siebens Fieldhouse, the reception is sponsored by the National Alumni Association. All guests, faculty and staff are invited to relax and celebrate with the graduates and their families. In case of inclement weather, the reception will be held in the Lamberti Recreation Center.

Storm Lake and Ceremony Information

Local Hotels

Budget Host Vista Inn 1316 N. Lake Ave. 712.732.2342
Buena Vista Inn & Suites 1726 N. Lake Ave. 712.732.0121
King's Pointe Waterpark Resort 1520 E. Lakeshore 712.213.4500
Lighthouse Inn 1601 E. Lakeshore 712.732.5753
Sail Inn Motel 1015 Lakeshore 712.732.1160
Super 8 Motel 101 Milwaukee Ave. 712.732.3063, 800.800.8000
Vista Economy Inn Motel 1316 Lake Ave. 712.732.2342

Tickets for Commencement ceremony

  • Tickets of admission will be required for the 2:30 p.m. Commencement ceremony. Each graduate will be entitled to six free tickets for seating in the Siebens Fieldhouse. Additional guests may view simulcast proceedings in the Harold Walter Siebens School of Business/Siebens Forum.
  • Graduates on campus may pick up their tickets in Anderson Auditorium when they pick up their cap & gown. Graduates will be notified around Friday, May 8 if there are any additional tickets available and will be distributed on first come bases until gone. On day of event, any tickets turned in will be distributed at 1 p.m. in Siebens Fieldhouse. The Siebens Fieldhouse doors will open at 1 p.m. on Saturday for those who have tickets for the Commencement ceremony. There is no reserved seating in  Siebens Fieldhouse. The graduation procession will be broadcast to Siebens Fieldhouse for those who wish to view it from their seat in the Fieldhouse.
  • Family and friends of graduates who are unable to attend the Commencement ceremony at BVU may wish to view the event live on the BVU web site ( by clicking on the 2015 Commencement link beginning at approximately 2:15 p.m. on Saturday, May 23, 2015. Other Commencement information is also available on the website.

Seating and Special Accommodations

  • Guests who aren't able to access the bleacher seating in the Siebens Fieldhouse can request seating on the floor when they arrive at the Fieldhouse. One additional person will be allowed to accompany the person who requests seating in this area. Guests needing a wheelchair on Commencement day should contact the Dean of Faculty Office (712.749.2243 or email in advance to reserve a chair.
  • To better accommodate guests who come to campus for Commencement day events, the parking lot north of the Siebens Fieldhouse (parking lot B on the campus map) will be reserved for additional handicap and special needs parking that day. Use Early Street to access this parking lot. This reserved area will accommodate up to 60 vehicles and is centrally located to the Harold Walter Siebens School of Business/Siebens Forum and to the Siebens Fieldhouse. Shuttle service will be available in this area for guests who need assistance to get to the various locations on campus. Handicap parking is also available at other locations on campus, with limited shuttle service.
  • The Baccalaureate and Commencement ceremonies will be broadcast to Rooms 1-4 and Anderson Auditorium in the Harold Walter Siebens School of Business/Siebens Forum. These comfortable and air-conditioned locations are convenient areas to view the Commencement ceremonies for those with health concerns, the elderly, and guests who do not have tickets to the Siebens Fieldhouse. See a map of the Harold Walter Siebens School of Business/Siebens Forum on the Commencement website.

Ceremony recordings/photographs/flower sales

  • Color photographs of graduates receiving their diploma covers will be taken by a professional photographer and can be purchased at reasonable prices, allowing family members to enjoy the graduation without leaving their seats to take a picture. Because of this, we would appreciate your cooperation in taking your personal photos before and after, but not during, the ceremony. Graduates may visit the GradImages website at and click on the Pre-Event Email Registration to submit information and email addresses of those with whom they would like to share their proofs; proofs will be available for review a few days after the Commencement ceremony. Photo orders can be placed online or by calling 800.424.3686.
  • Diploma frames and other graduation products can be purchased at the Herff Jones website:
  • Video recordings of the Commencement ceremony and Baccalaureate service will be available for purchase from the University. Graduates have received order forms or the form may be found on the BVU website.
  • Grad Flowers will offer flowers for sale prior to the Commencement ceremony in front of the Siebens Fieldhouse starting at approximately 1 p.m. In the event of rain, flowers will be available in the lobby of Siebens Fieldhouse.

As always, Commencement promises to be an exciting time on Buena Vista University's campus. It serves to commemorate the important achievements of our graduate's goals. I look forward to celebrating this special occasion with you!

With best wishes,

Frederick V. Moore