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As employees, you have information records feeding several systems that require your legal name, including but are not limited to: IRS, Immigration, and Health and Retirement Benefits systems. Additionally, these systems may also record other names by which you are known. VCU will utilize your legal name (regardless of your designated name of use) for all systems for which it is required to do so. It will also provide other names by which you are known by (including your name of use) if required. If you do not have a U.S. social security number or International Taxpayer Identification Number, please email email@example.com to receive further guidance.
Entering a name of use publically into the VCU system that is different than your legal name is a significant decision. A change of this type impacts a large number of systems and processes both at VCU and beyond. We want you to make the most informed decision possible about whether entering into a public system a name of use other than a legal name is the right decision for you.
What is a Name of Use?
A Name of Use is a first name, different from one's legal name, by which an employee would like to be addressed.
Do I have to choose a Name of Use?
No. This is not a required field. However, we encourage everyone to complete this field. If you do not complete the name of use field, VCU will continue to use your legal first name.
My name is fine, what if I like my legal name?
That’s great! Simply put your first name as you want it displayed in the name of use field. It will be combined with your legal last name to form your full name in the system. If you leave the Name of Use field blank, then your full name will be formed using your legal first name and legal last name. If you wish to have your middle name or initials displayed, then provide a name of use to ensure your name is displayed as you wish.
Why is VCU doing this now?
VCU wants employees to feel comfortable and safe in their work environment. VCU has been working to implement a process to enable employees and students to identify a Name of Use for several years. We have reached a point where we have the technological capacity to do so and are able to put the systems in place in an effective and sustainable way.
What if I want to change my last name?
Visit the U.S. Social Security Administration and the Department of Motor Vehicles website of your state for more information.
My colleague refuses to use my Name of Use or Pronouns. What do I do?
The changes you make to eServices may not be visible to your colleagues. Consider having a conversation with people to share your name and pronouns. If you do not receive a response that addresses your needs and/or you believe that you are being discriminated against based on your identity, please contact VCU's Title IX office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My colleague refuses to use my Name or Pronouns of Use even though I updated my information and told them I had recently updated my name/gender/pronoun; what do I do?
VCU upholds the commitment to recognize everyone’s right to use the name, gender and pronouns with which they identify. We encourage you to contact your manager and ask for their guidance. Employee Relations can also be of assistance; contact them at email@example.com. If you do not receive a response that addresses your needs and/or you believe that you are being discriminated against based on your identity, please contact VCU's Title IX office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My manager refuses to use my Name of Use or Pronouns. What do I do?
The changes you make to eServices may not be visible to your supervisor or colleagues. Consider having a conversation with people to share your name and pronouns.
My manager refuses to use my Name or Pronouns of Use even though I updated my information and told them I had recently updated my name/gender/pronoun; what do I do?
VCU upholds the commitment to recognize everyone’s right to use the name, gender and pronouns with which they identify. We encourage you to contact Employee Relations at email@example.com. If you do not receive a response that addresses your needs and/or you believe that you are being discriminated against based on your identity, please contact VCU's Title IX office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can someone help me explain this to my friends and family?
The decision to use a name other than one’s legal name may be a difficult one to explain to others. Employees with state health plans have access to employee assistance programs (EAPs). Included are up to four sessions with an EAP counselor at no charge. Counselors may be able to provide guidance about explaining a name of use to family and friends.
What do I need to tell professional organizations or other potential places of employment about my election of a Name of Use at VCU?
It is your responsibility to communicate your decision to all necessary parties when you select a name of use other than your legal name. This includes those outside the VCU system who may not know your name of use and those within the VCU system who do not have access to your legal first name.
I completed/updated my Name of Use in eServices, but the system has not updated. How long do I have to wait?
Systems generally update within 24 - 48 hours. If you continue to have problems with updates, please email email@example.com
What does a “directory level” name change mean?
A directory level change means that once you enter your name of use, the university will know, recognize, and refer to you by this name across all systems. For example, letters mailed to your address of record will be addressed to your name of use. Additionally, your name of use will appear in search results conducted on campus websites.
What about my email?
Once your name of use has been updated in eServices, and you have made a request to change your eID, IT will contact you to update your email address.
Can I update my eID?
You can change your eID. After your information is updated in eServices, go to eid.vcu.edu. On that site, you will find a clickable icon for generating a new eID based on your new name information.
Will my name of use be used on my tax documents?
No. Your legal name is used for all tax documentation.
Will my name of use appear on U.S. immigration documents?
In general, U.S. immigration documents (I-20 for F-1; DS-2019 for J-1: I-797 approval for H-1B; F-1, J-1, and H-1B visa stamps, etc.) always reflect your name as it appears on the biodata page of the passport issued to you by your home country government. U.S. immigration documents may, in some cases, also reflect other names (such as name of use, married name, prior name, nickname, etc.), if you disclose them during the U.S. immigration process.
What happens to my VRS and/or other retirement accounts?
The VRS system and other retirement accounts require use of your legal name and your legal sex.
What about my health benefits?
Your health coverage records require use of your legal name and legal sex
What about my name in the VCU health system?
VCU Health and VCU Health Sciences will update their platforms to utilize these fields starting in the 2021-2022 academic year.
What if I am both employee and student at VCU, can I have two different names of use?
No. Your eServices identity is tied to you regardless of whether you are a student, employee or both. The same information is used across all university roles.