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Student Lived/Preferred Name Process

At SUNY ESF, we firmly believe that everyone should be referred to by the name that they want to be called, and which authentically reflects their identity.

Members of our community may go by a first name that is different from their legal name. To differentiate from legal name, this is sometimes referred to as a lived, chosen, or preferred name.

To Submit a Lived/Preferred Name

Log into your myESF portal. Under the "Personal Information" tab, edit your personal details to include a "Preferred First Name." You may also update your personal pronouns and gender identity if desired. Within approximately 24 hours of updating the "Preferred First Name" field in myESF, your legal name will be automatically replaced by your lived/preferred name in the following places:

  • ESF Information Systems

    • email address display name

    • ESF class rosters

    • All myESF system greetings

    • Your myESF profile display name

    • ESF Handshake

    • ESF Engage

  • Syracuse University Information Systems

    • mySlice

    • BlackBoard

    • SU class rosters

    • email display name

    • SU Zoom display name

    • Student ID card (Please visit the SU ID Card office to pick up your new ID card)

Important Notes

  • Centennial Hall records are not linked to myESF. To update your name for your door tag and other records, please contact

  • If you would like help talking about your name and/or pronouns with anyone on campus or at Syracuse University, please contact the Lived Name Committee at

  • Some institutional, federal, and state documentation requires the use of legal name, for example transcripts, financial aid documentation, the SU student directory, and international student documentation. Information on how to remove your name from the SU student directory is addressed in the FAQs below.

  • If you have granted access to any of the above systems to someone else (parent/family/guardian/other), they will see the same name information that you see.

  • We endeavor to use the lived name you provide in as many areas as possible, including on mailings to permanent addresses. However, we recognize that there are instances where, for safety reasons, students may need to solely use a legal name in their home environment. If this is your situation, we encourage you to reach out to the Lived Name Committee at to discuss alternatives to the standard process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does ESF use the combination term Lived/Preferred Name?

You may notice that our process uses the combination term "Lived/Preferred Name". This is done in order to remain consistent with language used within the ESF and SU information systems; we recognize that lived names are not merely a preference. We firmly believe that everyone should be referred to by the name that authentically reflects their identity.

Can I submit a lived/preferred last name?

Please note that this process allows students to indicate a first name. If you wish to add a last name different from your legal last name, please contact Rebecca Hoda-Kearse, Executive People Officer, at

How do I remove my name from the SU Directory?

Syracuse University Directory displays only legal name. To prevent disclosure of Directory Information, you must file a Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information form with the Syracuse University Registrar's Office, 106 Steele Hall. Requests may be filed at any time and remain in effect permanently (including after departure from the University) until removed, in writing, by the student.

What can I do if a college community member refuses to use my lived/preferred name or repeatedly neglects to use my lived/preferred name?

ESF is committed to fostering a safe, respectful, and inclusive environment for the benefit of our entire campus community. You have several options for reporting and/or support in this instance. These include connecting with the Lived Name Committee (, the Office of Inclusion, Diversity, & Equity, a trusted faculty or staff member, or by submitting a bias incident report (either anonymously or with your contact information attached).

Contact the Lived Name Committee

If you have any questions about this process, please check out the "Frequently Asked Questions" list and/or reach out to the ESF Lived Name Committee at

If you have any feedback you would like to share with the committee please fill out this survey.

To report an incident of hate or bias please report the incident(s) in our Bias Reporting Tool.

Bias Reporting Tool

Bias Incident Reporting Form

e s f bias reporting response resourcesESF's bias reporting system provides ESF students, staff, and faculty with an avenue to report incidents of bias, bigotry, or hate that occur on our campus or in off-campus settings that impact ESF. Reports may be submitted anonymously or with the reporter's name included. Please note that submitting a report anonymously may impact ESF's ability to fully respond to your concerns. ESF Community members who feel they have been the target of bias (or who have witnessed a bias-related incident) may report the incident online, or contact these Title IX Authorities.