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Preferred First Name FAQs

Get answers to frequently asked questions about the Preferred First Name Policy.

What is a preferred first name?

The term "preferred first name" refers to a first name that an individual wishes to use that differs from their legal name on legal documents and/or differs from the name that is listed on records that have not been changed legally.

May I specify a preferred middle or last name?

No. Preferred name only applies to your first name. If you would like to change your middle or last name on your record you will need to change your legal name.

When will the preferred name(s) I select take effect?

It will take one to three (1-3) business days to propagate and appear on systems.

How do I get my preferred first name printed on my ID card?

Once your request has been approved and you have received an email confirmation with approval, visit the Office of Safety and Security to request a new ID card be printed. Please allow 1-3 business days for your preferred first name to be updated in the safety and security ID card system before visiting.

How will having a preferred first name instead of my legal name on my ID card affect me?

Your preferred name is for use within the Fisher community only. If you choose to have your preferred first name on your ID card, it cannot be used as proof of legal identity and may impact its use as a form of ID. It is advisable to carry a government-issued form of identification such as a driver’s license or passport with you.

Where will the preferred first name appear?

MySJF, Handshake, HMS/PCS, Blackboard, TutorTrac, Fish 'R' Net, Premisys (ID cards), Alma, ACS/FrontRush, uAchieve, FisherLink, Cardinal Connections, Medicat, Maxient.

What documents will NOT have preferred my first name?

Some campus departments interact with, and send reports to, federal, state, and other government agencies that verify identity using legal name, social security number (in some cases), and other personal identifiable information which prohibits the use of a preferred first name. The documents below will use your legal name:

  • International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) Documentation
  • Student Financial Services Documentation
  • Financial Aid
  • Employment Records
  • Federal Requests for Information
  • National Student Clearinghouse
  • Transcripts
  • Licensing Certifications
Who do I contact if I have questions?

Students: Contact or email the Registrar's Office at

Faculty/Staff: Contact or email Human Resources at