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Binghamton University enacts preferred name policy

Andrew Hudson   ||   Jan 24, 2020  ||   ,

Beginning this semester, Binghamton University has enacted a new preferred name policy that will enable members of the campus community to choose a first name other than their legal name. The policy will support preferred name use in a number of campus systems, as well as appearing on student ID cards and other outward facing applications.

The "Chosen-name" policy was formed in a join effort with Binghamton Information Technology Services, the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and the BU Council and Student Association. The policy enables students and employees to indicate a chosen first name, even if that name has not been changed legally.

Preferred names will be used for a number of systems and records, including printing preferred names on the Binghamton student ID card. The policy states that students and employees must still be able to provide government-issued identification bearing a legal name when required.

Per Binghamton's Chosen-name policy page, preferred names cannot be "used for the purpose of misrepresentation, avoiding legal obligations or in any manner that violates university policies or federal, state or local laws." The university also reserves the right to remove any chosen name without prior notice to the individual in instances of misuse or abuse of the policy.

Chosen names at Binghamton will appear and be used in the following instances:

  • University ID card
  • Card access system
  • MyBinghamton
  • MyCourses
  • Banner class roster
  • STARREZ (Residential Life database)
  • New-student orientation databases
  • Binghamton University Public Directory, unless a FERPA information block has been requested
  • Email display name
  • Meal plan, library and health services display name
  • Human Resources self-service and online time and attendance (employees)

Legal names will be used for official university records, as well as for the following:

  • International Student and Scholar Services documentation
  • Student Accounts documentation
  • Financial aid
  • Federal requests for information
  • National Student Clearinghouse
  • Academic transcripts
  • Athletics rosters where necessary for NCAA compliance
  • University Police Department
  • Health Services records, health insurance
  • Human Resources employment records, employee reports and payroll
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