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Have a question about Fredonia's Chosen Name program?  We've got the answers below!

The answers below are based on Fredonia’s Chosen Name Policy (scroll down to the first link under "Policy Content")

Who may use a Chosen Name?

Any student or employee with an F number (a Fredonia ID number) may use a Chosen Name.

How do I enroll in the Chosen Name program?

Contact Dr. Jennifer Hildebrand at You will be asked to fill out a form online to be shared with the Office of the Registrar.

Can I self-enroll?

Not at this time. Our Chosen Name process is currently being completed manually, behind the scenes. Self-enrollment is a priority for the Chosen Name program as we move forward. We are awaiting an upgrade to Banner (our campus’ information management system), which is expected to have some capabilities that will allow for self-enrollment.

Do I have to answer personal questions or otherwise qualify to use a Chosen Name?

Anyone with an F number can use a Chosen Name. The process will begin once you complete the form indicating your desire to participate in the program – no one will be evaluating your form to decide whether you are allowed to participate.

Where will my Chosen Name appear?

The Chosen Name Policy (scroll down to the first link under "Policy Content") indicates where your Chosen Name will appear when the program is fully implemented. The Chosen Name Information page at the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion allows you to see where, at present, your Chosen Name will appear.

Which name(s) can I change in the Chosen Name program?

At this time, you may elect to use a Chosen first name only.  

Can I use any name I want? Can I use symbols or non-alpha characters?

There are some limitations to the names and characters that you may use. See Section II of the Chosen Name Policy (scroll down to the first link under "Policy Content").

I understand that my email address will reflect my Chosen Name once I enroll in the program. How will it look?

FOR A STUDENT: When you arrive on campus, you are assigned one central email account. It is created from the first four letters of your last name and the last four digits of your F#. So a hypothetical student named Beyoncé Knowles, F01234567, would be assigned the account You are also assigned an alias account based on the first letter of your first name and your last name: If Beyoncé wanted to enroll in our Chosen Name Program using the name QueenB, then their new alias would be  All aliases will be tied to the central email account (in this case,

FOR FACULTY/STAFF: You are assigned a central email account created from the first eight characters of your last name (if there are multiple people on campus with your last name, your first initial will be added to help identify you).  You are also assigned an alias based on the following formula:  When you enroll in our Chosen Name Program, a new email alias is built from your ChosenName.lastname.  Your old email alias will remain connected to your account so that you will still receive emails from individuals who have not updated your email address.  All aliases will be tied to the central email account.

How long will it take for my email address to be updated once I enroll in the Chosen Name Program?

Please be aware that the change may take up to seven days to completely synchronize throughout all systems.

I want a FREDCard (Fredonia's ID card) that reflects my Chosen Name and a current picture.  How do I go about getting an updated card?  

Twenty-four hours after you have completed the paperwork and been notified that your record has been updated, you can get a new FREDCard at the FSA Office in Gregory Hall. For current or returning students who would like to replace the picture as well as update their name, inform the staff that you want a new picture, take your old ID card with you and be prepared to smile for the camera!  Your new ID card will include the updated photo and your Chosen Name.

Will enrolling in the Chosen Name Program erase all email references to my legal name?

When you exchange emails with someone, your email address is remembered in their contact list. If someone has emailed you at the address associated with your legal name before this update, they will still see your old contact info as a suggested contact. This cannot be changed.

Beyond enrolling in the program, is there anything I need to do to update my email account?

You should update your “send as” name in your Fredonia email account.  This will set the new email alias (with your chosen name) as your default “from” account.  Follow these steps:

  1. Your alias reflecting your Chosen Name has already been created.  In your Fredonia email account, click on the gear icon in the upper right hand corner and choose Settings.
  2. Select the Accounts menu option at the top.
  3. In the "Send mail as" section, you will see which email address is currently your default.  If you would like a different alias to be your default, click on the blue "make default" link.  That's it!

Can I send an email using my old alias with my legal name (for example, if I am not out to my family)?

Yes!  When you are composing an email in your Fredonia email account, you will see your default account in the "From" field.  At the end of your email address is a drop down arrow.  Click on it and you will see all accounts linked to your central email address.  Choose whichever one you'd like to use.

As a student, when I enroll in the Chosen Name program, will my professors be automatically notified?

At present, no. We strongly recommend that you contact your professors to share your Chosen Name (and pronouns). If you have questions or need assistance, please ask Dr. Jennifer Hildebrand when you request a copy of the enrollment form.

Although not every person using a Chosen Name identifies as trans or gender non-conforming, Chosen Name programs are particularly important to these individuals. Where can I learn more about the rights of trans and gender non-conforming individuals on US campuses?

The Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) have partnered to produce a useful handbook.

As a member of the staff or faculty at Fredonia, I want to support my students. How can I learn about best practices?

Lambda Legal provides a helpful overview of best practices.

I know that many people who use a Chosen Name also use gender neutral pronouns.  Where can I find information about using the right pronouns?

This document provides an overview of best practices.

Where can I find information about changing my name legally?

Laws and procedures differ by state. The National Center for Transgender Equality maintains a website that provides information on a state-by-state basis. This link will take you to the page for New York; if you need information about another state, there is a drop-down box you can use to navigate.

Can someone at Fredonia help me to change my name legally?

At this time, we are unable to provide legal advice or support. There are many people who can give you informal advice; feel free to contact the people or offices listed in the "Campus Resources" box below.

For my chosen career path, I’ll need to go through a background check or obtain a license. Will Fredonia automatically know which name to use if documents are requested?

It is the responsibility of the individual to ensure that the proper documents are supplied. If you use a Chosen Name and you are applying for licensure or know your potential employer will run a background check, it is your responsibility to resolve any potential problems or conflicts. Keep in mind that for a background check, faculty, student affairs personnel, and former supervisors all might be contacted.


Would you like to talk to someone about this decision? Do you have a question that wasn't answered here? Here are some good campus resources.

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