The Vice-President, Services, and the Enrolment Services team have embarked on a project to provide opportunities for certain students to use their preferred names on certain university documents as early as the fall 2012 term.
The move comes in response to a recent request from a student undergoing a gender reassignment that his preferred name replace his legal name on his official transcipts. Unfortunately, the university has no leeway in this matter since the rules regarding names on official academic documents are set by the Ministry of Education, Leisure and Sports (MELS).
However, there are certain adjustments which can be made on non-official documents, which are within the university’s control. “We have identified some areas in which changes can be made,” says Vice-President, Services, Roger Côté. “The next step is to develop criteria and effective processes to handle the changes.”
For example, the university is prepared to adjust information elements on class lists to allow for a preferred first name. Class lists are internal non-official documents and not subject to the MELS official provisions regarding use of a legal name.
The university will allow for further accommodations by allowing the use of the legal initial rather than the full legal given name on university ID cards.
“The review will determine whether there are other areas where preferred names can be accommodated,” adds Côté. “Our goal is to make the student experience as positive as it can be within the parameters set for us by the government.”
Administrative and systems changes will be developed with a view to implementing these changes for the fall 2012 term. Once the analysis is complete and procedure established, the information will be communicated to faculty, staff and students.