To qualify for graduation from Wartburg, students must:

1. Earn 36 course credits, including four May Term course credits. Transfer students must complete one May Term course credit for each year of classification at Wartburg.
2. Complete the Wartburg Plan of Essential Education for the degree for which they are candidates.
3. Complete courses in a major.
4. Achieve a minimum grade point average of 2.0 in: (1) all courses comprising a major; and (2) all courses taken at Wartburg. When Wartburg courses are repeated, only the last grade is used in calculating grade point average. Some departments require a higher grade point average in the major.
5. Take at least seven of the last nine course credits from Wartburg offerings.

When to declare your major
Individuals should declare their major(s) and/or minor(s) by the end of the first term of their second year. To do this, students must obtain a form in the Registrar’s Office and complete the form with the appropriate adviser and department chair signature. 

Each major includes separate requirements which are listed in the Wartburg College academic catalog. This catalog is available in the Registrar’s Office.

Diploma Application
During the third year, students must complete a diploma application which starts the graduation process. Advisers, together with the Registrar’s Office, exercise all possible care in checking students’ records for graduation. However, it is the sole responsibility of the student to fulfill all requirements for a degree.

Commencement Information

Graduating seniors are required to attend Baccalaureate and Commencement. If you are unable to attend and wish to graduate in absentia, please e-mail the Dean’s Office with the reason for your absence.

Dress for Commencement should be business casual to formal. The following official regalia are the only items to be worn during Baccalaureate and Commencement: Wartburg College approved cap, gown, honor cords, and scholarship medallions.

The purpose of this award is to recognize high school teachers who have inspired students in Wartburg’s graduating class and who have thereby significantly contributed to the accomplishment of earning a baccalaureate degree from Wartburg College. Two high-school teachers are selected and recognized Commencement weekend.  Winners will receive $500 each, and a $500 scholarship for a student from their high school would be made available to a rising senior.

Thursday, May 21
6 p.m., Senior Pig Roast (seniors only)—Walston-Hoover Stadium
Rain site: 4-H Building, 5th Avenue and 8th Street SW

Saturday, May 23 
10 a.m.-2 p.m., The Wartburg Store open—Saemann Student Center
2 p.m., Senior Recital, featuring members of the Class of 2020—Wartburg Chapel
6:30 p.m., May Term Band Concert—South Campus Mall (Rain site—McCaskey Lyceum)

Sunday, May 24
7:30 a.m., Commencement Rehearsal—Levick Arena, The W
8:30 a.m., Senior Breakfast—Mensa, Saemann Student Center
9 a.m.-1 p.m., Konditorei open—East side of Vogel Library 
9 a.m.-4 p.m., Den Rittersaal open—The W
9 a.m.-4 p.m., Zesty Orange open—The W
10 a.m.-1:30 p.m., The Wartburg Store open—Saemann Student Center
10 a.m., Baccalaureate—Neumann Auditorium     
11 a.m.-1 p.m., Sunday Brunch available—Mensa, Saemann Student Center

(Adult-$11; Child 5-12-$5; under 5-Free; Graduates eat free with their student ID. Reservations are not required.)  MENU (coming soon)

1 p.m., Pre-Commencement Concert by The Wartburg Commencement Band—Hoover Field House and Track, Wartburg-Waverly Sports and Wellness Center (The W)
1:30 p.m., Commencement—Hoover Field House and Track, The W, 400 12th St. NW

  • No spike-heeled shoes are allowed in the Hoover Field House and Track.
  • Doors open at 12:30 p.m. for seating.
  • All Regents and Presidential Scholarship recipients are encouraged to wear their medals with caps and gowns for Baccalaureate and Commencement. (If you have questions regarding the medals, please contact Admissions at 319-352-8264 or
  • Seating on the floor (in chairs) is available on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no limit to the number of family members who may attend. No tickets will be issued. 

Senior Art Exhibit open all weekend 9 a.m.–7 p.m.
Waldemar A. Schmidt Art Gallery, Bachman Fine Arts Center

Questions about Commencement? Contact Janeen Stewart at

Sunday, Dec. 15
10:30 a.m., Wartburg Chapel (Doors open at 9:45 a.m.) A reception for graduates and families will be in the Bachman Fine Arts Center foyer immediately following the service. 
Presiding Pastor: Rev. Dr. Brian Breckstrom, Dean of Spiritual Life
Wartburg Medal Recipients: Harold ’58 and Grace Jahn ’61 Kurtz
Graduation brunch is available in the Mensa from 11:15 a.m.-1 p.m. Graduates can use their board plan for the brunch. Cost is $11 for adults, $5 for children 5-12 years, and under five are free.

Degree Completion

–  Graduation Agreement
–  Graduation Guidelines