In support of the San Mateo County Community College District’s (SMCCCD) commitment to providing an equitable and safe environment for students whose legal name does not reflect their identity and/or expression, the three Colleges now accept requests from students to use a preferred first name on class rosters whenever possible.
UPDATE: Students can now also change their preferred name within their college-provided email address.
Students who wish to designate a preferred name should fill out the Change of Personal Information Form available online. Students who wish to update their email address should select the respective option under the section “Preferred First Name.” It is important to understand that designating a preferred name for use at the Colleges does NOT constitute a legal name change. A students’ legal name will continue to be used on certain college documents, such as transcripts.
Initially, preferred names will only be used on class rosters, wait lists, on Canvas, and within college-provided emails if desired. We are at the first stage of launching the preferred name capability – as we continue to research this integration, we hope to expand to other campus systems and applications in the future.
WHY IS THIS A PRIORITY?
The District seeks to provide an inclusive and non-discriminatory environment by making it possible for students to use a preferred first name on some college records when a legal name is not required. Consistently referring to people using the names with which they identify is a basic matter of respect.
HOW CAN STUDENTS CREATE A PREFERRED FIRST NAME?
Students may set their preferred first name by submitting the Change of Personal Information Form to Admissions and Records. Students must submit the form in-person. Upon submission, their choice of preferred name will be reviewed and once approved, it will appear on the class roster.
WHERE WILL I SEE PREFERRED FIRST NAMES (AND WHERE NOT)?
Initially, preferred names will only be used on class rosters, wait lists and on Canvas.
At this time, preferred first names will NOT appear in the following places:
- Official Documents such as Transcripts
- Counseling Records
- Degree Works
- Student ID Card
- Personal Counseling
- Health Center
- Tutoring Lab
PLEASE NOTE: We will explore integration with other systems and applications in the future.
WHAT ARE THE GUIDELINES FOR SETTING PREFERRED FIRST NAMES?
Students may designate a preferred first name. Their legal last name (surname) will remain unchanged. Preferred first names are limited to alphabetical characters, a hyphen (-) and a space. Generally, students can set a preferred first name to any name, but the college reserves the right to deny or remove a preferred first name if it is used inappropriately, such as misrepresentation or fraud; such usage will also subject the student to disciplinary action in accordance with college policy.
Examples of preferred first names that will not be approved:
- Names containing foul or inappropriate language
- Names used for the purpose of misrepresentation