Friday, May 30, 2014

New Consortium southwest regional representatives take office

Dr. Adriana di Bartolo and Steve Willich are the new Consortium regional representatives for the Southwest Region, which includes Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawai'i, Nevada, and Utah.

Adriana is currently the Director of the Queer Resource Center serving the seven Claremont Colleges. Steve is the Director for GLBT Student Services at Auraria, which serves three institutions: Metropolitan State University of Denver, the Community College of Denver, and the University of Colorado, Denver. Steve is also the GLBT Knowledge Community Representative for NASPA Region IV-W.

Both Adriana and Steve believe their new Consortium positions are a way to give back to a professional organization that has supported them. Regional representatives work to ensure member and non-member institutions have access to continuing professional development, education, advocacy, and support resources.

"During my time as QRC Director, I've come to understand the importance of support, colleagueship, and friends who do LGBTQ work on college campuses," says Adriana. "In times of need, it is to those colleagues I turn to navigate difficult situations. I am grateful to be that support to others in the field."

"The Consortium and the colleagues that I have met through the organization have given me so much inspiration, advice, information, and hope as I work to support and educate the students on my campus and in my community," agrees Steve. "Serving as a Regional Representative allows me to make further connections within my region, increasing the level support for all of us." 

The Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals's mission is "to critically transform higher education environments so that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students, faculty, administrators, staff, and alumni/ae have equity in every respect." Currently, over 30 college and university member institutions are located in the Southwest Region.

Monday, May 12, 2014

UC Davis launches Preferred Name system, joining 7 other California campuses

In Spring 2014, the University of California, Davis launched a Preferred Name Policy that allows students to add a preferred name using the campus online directory system. When at all possible, the preferred name is then used on campus.

According to the Trans Policy Clearinghouse, UC Davis joins 74 other campuses in the U.S. and Canada and 7 other California campuses in allowing the use of a preferred name on campus documents and records. In the UC system, they follow the example of UC Irvine and UC Santa Cruz.

In addition, UCLA is on course to use a preferred name system in Fall 2014, and UC Riverside is implementing a new preferred name policy in the next two years as the campus switches to Banner for its student information system.

The University of Vermont was a trailblazer in allowing all students to select a preferred name online when they launched their system in 2009.

Other California campuses using preferred names are Cal Tech, Cal Poly SLO, Chapman University, Stanford University, and USC.

CR80 News reported on the UC Davis preferred name policy in a recent post:
A student ID can verify an individual’s identity with a simple swipe, tap or scan, instantly tethering the person who presents the card to a user account on the backend system. But what happens when the cardholder no longer uses their legal name? 
It’s a challenge that the University of California at Davis is meeting head on by enabling students to have a non-legal name printed on their IDs. The university’s Preferred Name Program is acknowledging that an individual’s identity is just as much reflected in the moniker that they respond to as the information stored in the backend system. 
The program was instituted following requests from UC Davis students, in an attempt to better accommodate transgender and foreign students who don’t use or respond to their given name. Understandably, a legal first name may be substituted on the student ID so long as the use of a preferred name is not for the purpose of falsification. 
UC Davis acknowledges that a preferred name should be used whenever possible throughout the student’s university experience – including university records.

Continue reading here.