New graduation reveal rolls out this week

Of the thousands of students who will walk across the stage in Hilton Coliseum this weekend, one will be sure to stand out in the crowd.

Red bird mascot in football uniform waves flag on field

Crayton Mitchell as Cy performs with other Iowa State students during the 2023 Liberty Bowl in Memphis. Mitchell will don Cy's feet for his graduation ceremony Saturday. Submitted photo.

As part of a new commencement tradition, graduating members of Iowa State's mascot squad are encouraged to wear Cy's feet as part of their commencement regalia. It's a special recognition since the names of students are kept secret for the duration of their time appearing as Cy for the mascot squad.

"Iowa State wants all graduates to celebrate their unique ISU experience," said Jennifer Suchan, university registrar. "Adding Cy's feet as part of the many academic adornments for graduates is a great way for the students who participated in the mascot squad to celebrate and recognize their experience."

Crayton Mitchell, a graduating senior in industrial design, joined the mascot squad in 2021. He'll be the first to take part in this tradition when he crosses the stage during the College of Design commencement ceremony at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 11.

"I am very excited and proud to be the first Cy to wear the feet for commencement," Mitchell said. "Being Cy has been one of the greatest college experiences. From running the football team out at home games, traveling to BYU, Las Vegas and March Madness, to going to weddings as Cy, it has all been so much fun."

4,598 students earning degrees

Nearly 4,600 students are expected to complete one or more Iowa State degrees this spring. That includes an estimated 3,866 undergraduate students, 575 graduate students and 157 veterinary medicine candidates. The university community will celebrate them during five commencement ceremonies May 9-11:

  • Master's and doctoral candidates, 7 p.m. Thursday, Hilton Coliseum
  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine candidates, 1 p.m. Friday, Stephens Auditorium
  • Undergraduates in the colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Business, 9 a.m. Saturday, Hilton
  • Undergraduates in the colleges of Design, Engineering, 2 p.m. Saturday, Hilton
  • Undergraduates in the colleges of Human Sciences, Liberal Arts and Sciences, 7 p.m. Saturday, Hilton

Each ceremony will be livestreamed (links).

More celebrations

The six undergraduate colleges also will honor graduating students at their own convocations and receptions on Friday or on Saturday morning. The college name includes a link to the event livestream or reception details.

Parking suggestions

Due to CYTown construction, some parking lots between Hilton Coliseum and Jack Trice Stadium will be unavailable during commencement weekend. Additional parking is available at Jack Trice Stadium, Maple Willow Larch residence halls, Lied Recreation Center and the Memorial Union (parking maps and CyRide, golf cart information). Visitors parking north of Lincoln Way are asked to cross the road at traffic-controlled crosswalks. Handicap parking is available in lot C2, immediately south of Hilton.