When choosing a campus name or changing your legal name, please consider the information below.
Your campus name is your legal name by default, but a student may request a different campus name. Please review the following information before making this request in Williams Student Records. Once your campus name is requested the updated name will roll out to all campus systems. This process may take up to a week, but most updates will appear within a day of your request.
Where will my campus name appear?
- Everywhere except as noted below. Faculty, academic, and administrative staff for the most part will only see your chosen campus name.
- Your long email name will be updated—you will be notified of the timing of this change. If you have given your long email name outside of Williams, you will be responsible for providing your updated email name.
- You will need to get a new campus ID card from Campus Safety and Security. Turn in your old ID card with no charge for the new ID card. Your old ID card will be inactivated if the new card is not picked up from CS&S within a reasonable time.
Where will my legal name be required?
- The Registrar’s Office, Controller (Bursar), and Payroll all submit external reports requiring your legal name and Health Services and CS&C both need to have your legal name on record. However, your campus interactions with these offices will normally use your campus name. Financial Aid and Student Loan applications and documents require your legal name, but the office will use your campus name in communications.
- Your official transcript, issued outside Williams, will use your legal name.
- There are some instances where you may need to give your legal name to a faculty or staff person:
- Travel arrangements for courses or for extra-curricular activities may require your legal name.
- Applications for fellowships or internships through Williams may require your legal name.
- If you are asking a faculty member to write a letter of recommendation supporting an application, you may need to supply your legal name to that faculty member.
Will my legal name persist or be available on some documents?
- High school and college transcripts, including study away or summer school transcripts, generally will use your legal name and these are available to faculty and academic staff. Filed petitions such as major and concentration declarations, independent study, and WSP 99 forms are also available to faculty and academic staff. If you wish that your legal name be redacted from these documents, you may make that request to the Registrar’s Office.
- Although Williams will make every effort to update your campus name in a comprehensive way, there may be existing lists, forms, etc., which include your legal name. Administrative staff, faculty, and academic staff have all been made aware of the campus name policy and will treat existing lists and documents with sensitivity. If you find that your legal name has persisted in a place that doesn’t seem appropriate to you, please contact the Registrar’s Office.
Transgender students may find that the campus name policy does not provide the privacy desired. Contact the Registrar's Office for separate accommodations for the following:
- On request, the college can redact your legal name from prior documents and external transcripts available to faculty, advisors, and academic staff.
Your legal name will continue to appear on legal documents such as your official transcript, college bills, paychecks, and financial aid reports. If you are planning to legally change your name in the future, there are advantages to doing so before you graduate. To fully understand the nuances of using your chosen name, please contact Mary Morrison, Associate Registrar who will discuss the process in more detail.
If you discover your legal name is not accurate, please bring in one of the following documents to the Registrar's Office so we can correct your record:
- birth certificate
- or social security card
If you plan to legally change your name while at Williams, you will need to submit a copy of the court documents to the Registrar’s Office in order for us to process the change.