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This page offers basic information geared toward students. You are encouraged to visit the Division of Student Affairs' Name Change Resources website for additional information and resources.
I acknowledge that I have read all the information regarding updating my name of use.
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.
Do I have to choose a Name of Use?
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.
With these changes, Records and Registration will have your name of use when generating your diploma. You will also have the opportunity to provide the name for your diploma during the graduation checkout process.
My name is fine, what if I like my legal name?
That’s great! Simply put your 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 has been working on this implementation for several years. We reached a point where we had the technological capacity and were able to put the systems in place to do this in an effective and sustainable way.
Can I get my Name of Use on my diploma?
Yes, you are allowed to request your Name of Use on your diploma. While completing your graduation checkout, please print/type your name exactly as you wish it to appear on your diploma, include accents, spaces, capitalization and applicable suffixes. No additional titles such as Esq. or Dr. will be permitted on the diploma name. In addition, nicknames or names enclosed by parentheses or quotation marks will not be permitted.
I put my name of use and pronouns into eServices, but my professor says they don’t have this information. What do I do?
While you have put your name into the system, sometimes professors do not print new roll sheets on a regular basis. If you changed your name after the beginning of the semester, your professor may not have updated their personal rosters. Please inform your professor that you have updated your name and ask them to incorporate that into their rosters.
My professor refuses to use my Name or Pronouns of Use even though I updated before the semester started/I told them I had recently updated my name, 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 department chair and ask for their guidance. The Dean of Students office can also be of assistance; contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you do not receive a response that addresses your needs and/or your situation is severe, please contact VCU’s Title IX office at email@example.com
Can someone help me explain this to my friends and family?
These can be difficult experiences, and you deserve support. Please reach out to University Counseling Services, and/or The Well for access to resources available to you to help you navigate your particular experience. The Dean of Students office can also be of assistance; please contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please reach out to University Counseling Services, and/or The Well for access to resources available to you to help you navigate your particular experience.
What do I need to tell graduate schools or potential places of employment about my election of a Name of Use at VCU?
It is your responsibility to communicate your decision to all the necessary parties when selecting 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 my Name of Use but the system hasn’t updated, how long do I have to wait?
Systems generally update within 24 - 48 hours. If you are still having problems with updates, please email email@example.com
What does a "directory level" change mean?This means that once you put in your name of use, this is how the university will know, recognize, and refer to you across centralized record systems and many systems used by individual units; for example, VCU generally uses your address of record from the directory when we mail you a letter. However, certain communications, for example, related to your financial aid, may address you by your legal name. Also, this is how you will appear in search results conducted on campus websites.
What about my email?
Once the name of use field is updated in Banner, the first name field in VCU GSuite (email) will automatically update to the new name. This does not change your email address. That requires a change to your eID.
What about my eID?
You can change your eID. However, this is a much more complex process that impacts a lot more than simply your email address. The changing your eID website provides specific guidelines for those who choose to move forward with this.
What if I am both employee and student at VCU, can I have two different names of use?
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.