Welcome to Iowa State

Iowa State has students from all 50 states and more than 100 nations, all coming together to call Ames their home. This vibrant college town is part of what makes Iowa State special.

While there is a lot to do on campus, the Ames community boasts shopping, dining, and outdoor activities to make the most of your college experience.

Orientation parking

Starting classes in January? (spring entry)

OnCyte Orientation

We encourage you to park in the Memorial Union Parking Ramp attached to the east side of the Memorial Union. You will be provided one free parking voucher during check-in. If you are bringing more than one vehicle or the parking ramp is unavailable, free parking is available at the commuter lot located at the Iowa State Center. The fare-free CyRide Orange 23 Route picks up from the commuter lot and stops at the north entrance of the Memorial Union (estimated 12-15 minutes travel time).

Starting classes in May, June, or August? (summer or fall entry)

First-year student OnCyte Orientation

Orientation parking is available in Lot 63, east of the Maple-Willow-Larch Residence Halls. When you arrive on campus, stop at the parking tent near the entrance of Lot 63 to receive your orientation parking pass.

Transfer student OnCyte Orientation

We encourage you to park in the Memorial Union Parking Ramp attached to the east side of the Memorial Union. You will be provided one free parking voucher during check-in. If you are bringing more than one vehicle or the parking ramp is unavailable, free parking is available at the commuter lot located at the Iowa State Center. The fare-free CyRide Orange 23 Route picks up from the commuter lot and stops at the north entrance of the Memorial Union (estimated 12-15 minutes travel time).

Directions to Ames, Iowa

By car

Ames is centrally located in the Midwest and well-served by ground transportation. North-south Interstate 35 passes through Ames and intersects east-west Interstate 80 just 25 miles south of Ames. Minneapolis is only 218 miles north, Chicago 322 miles east, and Omaha 168 miles west.

By plane

Many commercial and commuter airlines serve the Des Moines International Airport. Private planes use the Ames Municipal Airport. Car rental is also available at the Des Moines airport.

Directions to Iowa State University