Answers About Transgender Campus Policies
LGBTQ Resources within the Center for Diversity & Inclusion
In order to assist transgender and gender variant members of the campus community with navigating the policies and practices of the university, we encourage you to speak with the Director or the Coordinator of LGBTQ Outreach & Programming in the Center for Diversity & Inclusion (Sara Bendoraitis and Matthew Bruno). They are available to assist you with everything from changing your name on University records, to getting a new American University ID card, to finding local resources. While it is possible to accomplish nearly all of these tasks on your own, a meeting with one of the Center's staff may save you some time while providing access to resources you may not have known were available. While we have worked hard to make the campus ever more inclusive, if you have noticed something that could help to make campus more transgender-friendly, please feel free to contact one of us. This is an ongoing effort and we would appreciate your input.
Below is information concerning very specific areas on campus with contact people for each area. If you ever have any questions, please contact the Center for Diversity & Inclusion.
If you are a student and plan to live in University housing, we recognize that you may have concerns about your placement. Housing and Dining Programs and the Center for Diversity & Inclusion are committed to finding appropriate housing for all students living on campus, and will address individual needs on a case-by-case basis. No student is expected to find a transgender-friendly campus living situation by themselves. If you identify as transgender or gender variant and would like to talk about specific housing concerns, please contact one of the campus point people. While you are not required to seek special accommodations, we encourage you to do so, particularly if you think you may face hostility or harassment otherwise.
If you are seeking special accommodations for student housing, such as a single room or assistance in finding a transgender-friendly roommate, you must still abide by housing application deadlines and preferably notify Assignments Coordinator for Housing (Jennifer Gough) as soon as you know that you want a special accommodation. Please note that for eligible students (seniors, juniors, and some sophomores), Nebraska Hall apartments allow you to apply with other students for a suite-style apartment that has no gender restrictions. The apartment includes a private bedroom and a shared living space and bathroom.
Additionally, American University Housing offers (as of the 2012-2013 academic year) open gender housing. This option is available to returning students in Centennial Hall, Nebraska Hall, the Berkshire Apartments, and the Social Justice Living Learning Community in Roper Hall. It is also available to new students through the Social Justice Living Learning Community. In order to be part of open gender housing, you must opt-in. To learn more information, please visit our Housing Options page.
Name and Gender Change on Campus Records (transcripts, diploma, or employment records)
In order to change your name on your transcripts, diploma, or employment records, you must legally change your name. After a legal name change, will change your name on all official documents. If you are an alumnus, you can also request an updated diploma with your current legal name. For both, you will need to fill out the "Personal Data Change Form" located on the forms section of the Registrar's Website.
If you have not legally changed your name, the Center for Diversity & Inclusion can provide a letter to your professors requesting to call you by your preferred name. You can request this letter by contacting the Director or the Coordinator of LGBTQ Outreach & Programming in the Center for Diversity & Inclusion. This doesn't change your name on official records. Official name changes have to follow the above guidelines.
To request a name change on material sent out by Alumni and Development, please make a personal request by phone (with sufficient confirmation we are speaking with the subject) online, by email, or in writing - this includes gender specific titles. Alumni and Development will also change the gender field as requested with the same level of documentation and confirmation as a name change. They respect that any alumnus or donor has the right to be addressed and referred to according to personal preference regardless of legal status. The prior name will be preserved for reference and look up purposes. To make this change you may contact Abbey Silberman Fagin (Senior Director – Development) or any of the Alumni and Development staff.The requested change can also be made online. If you are a current or former employee, you can request a name change on your files by filling out a “Personal Data Change Form” available through Human Resources or online. You will need to show legal documentation of your name change in order to request the change. You can request a change in the gender listed in your files by filling out an “Invitation to Self Identify” form. This form can be requested from your HR representative or from one of the transgender point people.
Although your name will be changed on all documents, your prior name will continue to be listed as a previous identity in the university’s database in order to ensure that a search run on your former name will access the correct files0.
To change your name on the AU Website, go to the HR/Payroll Connection portion of your my.american.edu account.
Go to "Info/Forms"----->"Employee Record Data"----->"Personal Data Change"
This form has an option to just change your name on the website.
For information on changing federal documents, please visit NCTE (the National Center for Transgender Equality) website.
Name Change on Email Account
When you first set up your e-mail account with the university, you can submit the preferred name that you are currently using,regardless of whether or not you have legally changed your name. If you have already set up your e-mail account, then the Technology Help Desk or the Help Desk Manager (CaroLyn Jimenez) can change the name that is used with the e-mail account. You can request this change by contacting the Help Desk directly at x2550 or the Help Desk Manager at 2280.
Name Change on AU ID Card
We recognize that it is important for your university identification card to reflect your current appearance and name. In order to meet this need, we offer two AU ID Card options:
- If you have legally changed your name and have changed your name with the Registrar’s office or Human Resources, you can obtain a new AU ID Card with your new name.
- If you have not yet changed your name, you can obtain an AU ID Card that only lists your initials and your last name.
To receive the new AU ID Card, please go to the Housing and Dining Programs office and request to have your card updated with your new name or to have it updated with just your initials and last name. You do not have to identify yourself as transgender. You should be able to obtain a new card with a new photograph. You need to bring in your old card in order to have this service free of charge. If you would like assistance, please contact the One Card and Facilities Assistant (Kula Manobah).
Student Health Insurance
The Student Health Center is committed to working with transgender students to ensure appropriate and sensitive care. If you are receiving care through the Student Health Center you can arrange to have the appropriate name listed on your files and in the Student Health Center computer system.
In the 2009/2010 SHIP brochure on page 17 under the heading "Additional Benefits" the following statement is made:
Transgender Benefits Expenses:
Medically necessary non-surgical treatment for transgender medical conditions, limited to office visits, lab tests, pharmacy and hormone therapy. Treatments covered are limited to a $3,000 maximum per policy holder per policy year.
Under the current plan the copay allowance is depending on the providers relationship with the plan. If a provider is a par provider the carrier will pay benefits at a 80% allowance of UCR. This then has the student paying the remaining 20% of UCR. When the provider is not par with the insurance claims are then paid at the 60% of R&C charges and our student pays all balances. Please remember that this benefit has a annual maximum of $3,000.00. It is subject to the $150.00/$200.00 plan deductible as well.
Faculty/Staff Health Insurance
For information on the Faculty/Staff Health Insurance Plan, please see the summary of benefits. For more information or questions, please consult the Director of Employee Benefits & Communication in HR (Sarah Bayne).
The university is committed to having safe and accessible campus restroom facilities. We recommend that individuals make choices about restroom usage based on their own level of comfort and their gender identity or expression. We know that many transgender individuals feel safer and more comfortable using single stall restrooms. American University has committed to including single stall restrooms in all future construction at the university. Currently, there are single stall restrooms in most campus buildings. All of these restrooms are gender neutral. Click here for a list of the location of all single stall restrooms compiled by the Center for Diversity & Inclusion.
If you find that one of the restrooms on our list or that any single stall restroom on campus is labeled incorrectly, please contact the GLBTA Resource Center.