CSU updates preferred name policy

Cleveland State University updated their preferred name policy during the summer that will now allow for preferred names to be featured on CSU email, Zoom, Microsoft Teams and other school connected systems.

Back in 2017, the university adopted a new preferred name policy which states, “the university seeks to allow the use of preferred names wherever possible, consistent with the law and the constraints of university systems.”

CSU defines “preferred name” as any name that an individual chooses to go by other than their legal name, and the term “chosen name” is used to affirm that the name is more than a preference:

“Using an individual’s preferred name shows respect and creates a nondiscriminatory academic and work environment,” reads CSU policy. “This is to support students that have chosen names as well as preferred ones.”

Now, students are able to see their preferred names in more systems across the university that they weren’t able to before. One of the first steps for students is to navigate to CampusNet under the Personal Data tab and update the name information. 

After being requested and updated, the preferred name can be seen in the following circumstances: Blackboard, Bursar’s office, CampusNet, CARE records, Counseling Center records, Graduation program, Health and Wellness records, Office of Disability Service records, Residence Life documents, Student ID Card, and by all CSU faculty and staff.

The preferred name will not change any legal documents, including billing information, lease documents and diplomas.

The Office of Institutional Equity manages the University’s preferred name process. They work with partners on campus to update records with the preferred name. 

Some of these systems attached to the university require additional steps to finalize the name change, including Zoom, Office of Disability Services, Handshake and Viking ID cards. 

Some systems also require a legal name change within the university, including Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Starfish, CSU computer login screens, Diploma and other more detailed items. 

At CSU, the process for a legal name change requires the completion of a Change of Student Information form, as well as copies of necessary legal documents.

To view the updated policy in full, click here. To learn more information or ask any questions on the Preferred Name Policy, email oie@csuohio.edu. For any other questions or to learn more about LGBTQ+ services and inclusive policies, reach out to lgbtq@csuohio.edu.