Student Name on University Documents – Preferred Name

The University of Mary Washington supports that some students prefer to identify by a First name other than their legal first name. Where legal, institutional and technical capabilities permit, UMW will allow its community members to select a preferred first name that will be used in their interactions with the university.

Legal Name on University Records

A student with a legal name change may have their information updated by completing the Address/ Name Change Form. Please note supporting documentation as instructed on the form is required.

Upon receipt of the form and supporting documentation, the change will occur within 48 hours.

Preferred Name Policy

Any student may designate a preferred first name regardless of whether not they have legally changed their name. While UMW will strive to make certain its systems and applications uses chosen name, UMW may not be able to add a preferred name in instances where systems, applications, or policies are not controlled by the University.

Preferred Name Disclaimer

Preferred names cannot be used for official university student record purposes such as enrollment verifications, transcripts, financial aid, student accounts and other instances where the legal name is required by law. In order to change a legal name, students must provide the official document of the legal name change along with the Change of Name Request form to the Office of the Registrar, Lee Hall 2nd Floor, Student Services Suite. Please note any photocopies must be notarized.

Preferred Name Procedures

Students who wish to identify a preferred first name may do so at the Personal Information tab in Banner self-service. You may not use a preferred first name for the purpose of misrepresentation and you may not use inappropriate language.

A preferred first name may take several days to appear in all systems that display preferred first names.

Other Considerations for Using a Preferred Name

Although the systems will update as specified on this page, students need to keep in mind that faculty or staff may have already accessed information that contained a prior name. For example, if a faculty member downloads their class roster the week before classes start, then any change a student makes in the system after that would not be reflected on the class roster the faculty member has already downloaded. We highly recommend that students talk to faculty and staff where appropriate to ensure that the necessary individuals are aware of any changes that have been made.

Systems Reviewed to Display Preferred Name

Once students provide a preferred name, some systems will display immediately while others may require additional time. Each system or application will be evaluated individually in consultation with administrators of those systems.  The following systems support chosen names.

Application/System  Preferred Name  Department  Contact
Active Directory Yes Information Technology


Banner – Self Service Yes Registrar’s Office


Class Roster Yes Registrar’s Office


DegreeWorks Yes Registrar’s Office


EAB Navigate Yes Office of Academic Services


Email Display Name Yes Information Technology


Handshake Yes Career Services
Medicat Yes Health Center


Transact/eAccounts/Guest Deposits Yes Business Services/EagleOne Card Center
Visual Zen Yes Orientation



Services that require the use of Legal Names

While preferred name will be used in University business when feasible, some processes or services require the use of the student’s legal name.

Service Description Legal Name Preferred Name Affiliated Department
Communication with External Agencies Yes No Example: Background checks; federal reporting
Degree Verifications Yes No Office of the Registrar
Enrollment Verifications Yes No

Office of the Registrar

National Student Clearinghouse

Financial Aid Yes No Financial Aid Office
Police/Campus Police Yes No Campus Police
Transcripts Yes No Office of the Registrar
SEVIS Yes No Center for International Education
Student Accounts Yes No Student Accounts
Veterans Benefits Yes No

Office of the Registrar

Veterans Affairs