Supporting Transgender Students

Alverno College intentionally creates a welcoming and inclusive learning community in which all members recognize and respect the rights and human dignity of every other member.  The College values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from a variety of backgrounds.  In keeping with its long-standing Catholic Franciscan foundations, Alverno College does not discriminate against any student, employee or applicant to become such on the basis of any individual's age, citizenship, color, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, military status, national or ethnic origin, pregnancy or parenting status, political belief or affiliation, race, religion or creed (except in campus ministry staff positions), sex, sexual orientation, or veteran's status in the administration of its educational programs and activities or in its employment practices.  Furthermore, the College prohibits the harassment of students and employees, as harassment is a form of discrimination.

In the area of undergraduate enrollment, Alverno College's weekday undergraduate programs will remain exclusive in respect to gender identity, but not as to any of the other aforementioned characteristics.

Welcoming Transgender Students at Alverno College

Alverno College strives to create an institution and programs appropriate to the educational needs of women in the 21st century, particularly in its weekday college community.  In the Catholic tradition of caring and respect for each human person, we support students on their journey of self-discovery and recognize that gender identity may change over time.  Alverno has put guidelines and services in place to support transgender students as integral members of our diverse campus community.  Specifically, Alverno College admits students who consistently live and identify as women.  In addition, continuing students whose gender identity changes after admission are encouraged to persist through graduation, experiencing the personal and academic support each student deserves from an Alverno education. 

Because it reflects the mission of our weekday undergraduate college for women, Alverno College will continue to use gendered language in its official and ceremonial communication.  However, to respect the dignity of each member of the community, our interpersonal communication will be informed by members’ ability to identify their gender identity and chosen pronouns.   These can be updated, modified, changed, or deleted at any time by updating personal information on IOL. Currently, options for gender identity include the following:

  • Female
  • Male
  • Non-binary
  • Gender non-conforming

Alverno College admits students who consistently live and identify as women. 

  • The application provides an optional gender identity disclosure item
  • In practice, this means that the following students may enroll:
    • Students who live and identify as female regardless of biological sex
    • Female students who identify as non-binary or gender non-conforming
  • No medical documentation is necessary
Continuing Students

Students who begin their college experience at Alverno identifying as female but at some time begin identifying as male, non-binary or gender non-conforming are invited to remain enrolled through graduation.  Consistent with the hallmark of an Alverno College education, transgender students will receive the personal and academic support each student deserves.  Transgender students are welcome to use the restroom appropriate to their gender identity.  In addition, unisex/family single-stall restroom facilities are available in Christopher Hall (1st, 2nd & 3rd), Clare Hall (1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th) and Founders Hall (ground floor). 


Transgender student athletes are welcome to participate in accordance with NCAA guidelines.  The student athlete should meet with the director of athletics to review eligibility requirements and approval procedure for participation.  Highlights of said guidelines include:

  • The integrity of women’s sports will be preserved.
  • Policies governing sports should be based on sound medical knowledge and scientific validity.
  • The medical privacy of transgender students should be preserved.
  • Student athletes who are biologically female but identify as male may continue to participate in our women’s athletics program until or unless beginning hormone therapy.
  • Student athletes who are biologically male but identify as female may not participate in women’s athletics.
  • Women’s locker room facilities are available for student athletes who identify as female, and private restroom and shower facilities can be made available upon request for those who identify otherwise.
  • When teams travel for away competitions, upon request of the student-athlete, every effort will be made to connect with the host institution for appropriate facilities while maintaining confidentiality. In addition, overnight accommodations for the team may be adjusted accordingly.

Alverno’s student housing options are primarily female (doubles and singles) with community restrooms; however, there are a limited number of single rooms with restrooms that can be requested by transgender students wishing to live on campus in a slightly more private manner.  Requests should be directed to Residence Life.

Right to Privacy

The student’s right to privacy is of utmost importance.  With the exception of a safety concern, college staff will maintain confidentiality with any information shared and will follow FERPA guidelines as well.  This confidentiality applies to educational records, medical information, conduct records, and counseling and health services records. 

  • Alverno has a policy for students and employees wishing to change their chosen name, as well as preferred pronouns, in our campus information system. The chosen name will appear on the student’s ID card, faculty’s class rosters, Alverno email and Moodle.  The student’s legal name must be used for the transcript, financial aid, student employment, and tuition bill.

  • Exploration is underway to adjust our information systems so that chosen name will appear on faculty’s class rosters and can be used for the Alverno email address and Moodle.
Student Safety

Safety is a top priority in the Alverno living learning community.  Extensive efforts are undertaken to build and sustain a respectful and inclusive community in which every student and employee feels supported and safe.  Beyond programmatic connection building efforts, we provide students, faculty and staff with sound and effective educational resources and training related to diversity and inclusion.

Alverno’s policies and procedures are in compliance with state and federal laws protecting students and employees from discrimination based on sex, gender, gender identity and gender expression.

  • Nondiscrimination Policy (campus-wide)
  • Student Code of Conduct (behavior policies and conduct process for students)
  • Employee Handbooks (policies and procedures for faculty and staff)
  • Harassment, Violence and Discrimination Policy (Title IX – campus-wide)
    • Prohibits any gender-based misconduct (e.g., sexual harassment, non-consensual sexual contact, non-consensual sexual intercourse, sexual exploitation, sexual assault, stalking, retaliation)
    • Alverno College understands Title IX protections to include transgender or gender-nonconforming people
    • Title IX Coordinator (Executive Director of Career & Professional Development)
    • Confidential Resources (counseling, health services, campus ministry)

Alverno College Name Change Policy

All members of the Alverno community may update and/or change their name in our campus information systems at any time. This includes new and continuing students, faculty, and staff. Please find specific instructions below for names changes, including legal and chosen name changes.

Legal Name Change

Legal first and last name changes can be made at any time on IOL. In order to process this request, the person requesting the change will need to submit legal documentation of the name change (including but not limited to an updated driver’s license, passport, social security card, or notarized court document).  Students should bring their documentation to the Registrar’s Office, and employees should bring their documentation to Human Resources.

Chosen Name

Alverno College recognizes that as a community some of its members choose to use a first and/or last name other than their legal name to identify themselves. Anyone in the Alverno community may designate a chosen first and/or last name. This chosen name will be used in all college communication and information systems that support it (see chart below for chosen/legal name usage guidelines). Students, staff, or faculty can designate a chosen name at any time, regardless of whether or not they have legally changed their name. Chosen names can be modified, changed, or deleted at any time by updating personal information on IOL.  

ID Cards

You'll receive a confirmation email after your chosen name has been updated by the Registrar's Office or Human Resources. One business day after you receive this email, you may request a replacement ID card in Student Affairs (FO 119).

Email/Network User Name change

Changing your chosen name will not automatically update your Alverno username or email address. To update these, please email a completed Network Name Change form to

Chosen Pronouns

Alverno College celebrates gender diversity.  Accordingly, students, staff, or faculty may indicate which set of personal gender pronouns they wish for the campus community to use to refer to them.  The chosen pronouns will be made available to staff and faculty so that they can use them in conversation and reference to each individual.  Chosen pronouns can be designated at any time, and they can be modified, changed, or deleted at any time by updating personal information on IOL.  Currently, options for chosen pronouns include the following:

  • SHE she/her/hers
  • HE he/him/his
  • ZE ze/hir/hirs
  • THEY they/them/their
  • NAME Use my name as pronoun

All requests for changing chosen name, chosen pronoun, or gender identity will be accepted as long as the request is not intended to avoid legal obligations, used for fraudulent purposes, contains the use of profane words, or is otherwise deemed inappropriate. Alverno College reserves the right to refuse to honor any request under these circumstances.

However, in accordance with the mission statement, Alverno College is committed to creating an inclusive community and will make every effort to use chosen names, pronouns, and gender identity where possible throughout the college experience, except for the select systems and materials that require legal name and gender (see chart below) for reporting or legal needs.

If a student has concerns about chosen vs legal name and/or pronoun usage or would like to discuss a more widespread accommodation for safety or security reasons, please schedule an appointment with the Dean of Students (FO 119). A staff or faculty member should contact Human Resources for these discussions.  

Chosen vs. Legal Name/Pronoun/Gender Identity


Will Use Chosen Name/Pronoun/Gender Identity

Will Use Legal Name/Legal Gender


· Will collect chosen name on application.

· Acceptance decision

· Applications

· Communications


· Will use a combination of Legal and Chosen names within external communications


· Emails notifying of academic status

· Early Alert

· General communications

· Academic dismissal letters

Assessment Center




· Rosters

·  Kept confidentially for eligibility

Business Office/Financial Aid

· Internal Communications

· Meetings


· Award letter

· 1098T

· Loan servicing

· Loan documents

Career & Professional Development

· Database and intern lists generated from it (used internally)

· Student appointments

· Resumes and cover letters (name determined by the student’s preference)

· Event name tags

· Letters sent to mentors which refer to the student (only after student gives permission to use preferred name for this purpose)

· Running background checks and drug tests

· Collecting medical documentation required for internship site

· In both of the above situations, we are required to sign off on site-generated paperwork that says we have these documents on file at Alverno. 


· Check reimbursement (will use name on bank account)

· Check reimbursement (will use name on bank account)

Health Services

· Counseling

· Medical Records

Human Resources

· Internal Communications

· Meetings

· W2

· Payroll

· Direct deposits

Instructional Services

· Communications

· name tags

· schedules

·  tutor/academic assistant paperwork

· Payroll

· Disability documentation & other legal documents

International Center

· Communications

· Visa Information

Registrar's Office

· Class rosters

·  Communications

· Diplomas

· Academic evaluations/validation matrix

· Unofficial transcripts

·  Federally mandated reporting

· Transcripts

· Graduation program (students will have opportunity to specify which name they would like to use)

Residence Life

· CA Rosters

· Front Desk Visitation

· Door Decs

· E-mails to residents

· Roommate Notification

·  Mail rosters*

· Housing contracts

· Contract cancellation forms

Student Affairs

· ID Cards

· Communications

· Meetings

· Commencement Program (student’s choice)

· Emergency Loan &/or DASH grant check (will use name on bank account)

Tech Services

· Moodle

· IOL*

· LiveText

· O365

· Google Display names

·         IOL *


*Both chosen/legal name may appear