Students are able to indicate a preferred name. This information will appear on class lists that go to professors and some on-campus services. You can provide your preferred name at any point during your time at UBC.
UBC recognizes that many members of its community use names other than their legal names first provided to the University to identify themselves. However, the use of a preferred name for the purposes of misrepresentation is taken very seriously by the University and can be disciplined through either Academic or Non-Academic Misconduct.
Your preferred name will appear instead of your legal name in university-related systems and documents (e.g. Connect), except where the use of the legal name is required by University business or legal need.
To update your preferred name:
- Inform your Enrolment Services Professional (ESP) of the change.
- Follow up with your ESP to ensure your records are updated. You should do this even if you provided your preferred name when applying to UBC
You can also have your preferred name announced at graduation instead of your legal name. Provide your preferred name when you apply to graduate.
Implications of changing your preferred name
While UBC allows students to indicate their preferred first names without changing their legal names, it’s important to be aware of the implications of this change:
- Future employers, licensing bodies, or other educational institutions may require proof that your transcripts and diplomas are your legitimate academic records. This can also be the case if you are applying for additional education or graduate programs elsewhere.
- Official documents are often used to verify your identity and rely on consistency in name. Generally, employers and institutions that require the above documents will see your legal name, not your preferred name, which may cause confusion about the authenticity of your identity. We recommend that you change your name legally.
You can apply to change your legal name through the government of British Columbia.