Name Change Policy

Student Academic Records should bear the legal name of the student. Therefore, all name change requests must be signed by the student and be accompanied by documentation of the legal name.

  • Marriage - Copy of driver’s license with new name, social security card with new name, or marriage certificate or license.
  • Divorce - Copy of Divorce Decree, court entry, or order of legal name change (Not needed if the name is already on the name screen for a prior term.)
  • Legal Name Change - Court order of legal name change

(See below the list of exceptions that do not require documentation.)

Names on Diplomas:

The name on a diploma must match the name on the student academic record. Effective summer 2004, name changes will no longer be made based on the application for graduation. If a student is graduating and wants to change the way his name will appear on his diploma and transcript, he will need to submit a name change request with the appropriate documentation to the Office of the University Registrar.

Long Names:

The Student Data Base has space for 16 characters in the last name, 12 characters in each the first name and the middle name. The name change request form has the same number of spaces. If a student’s name is too long for the space available, the student must choose which names he wants to appear on the database within the limited number of spaces. If he has two last names and both will not fit, we recommend that he use the first of the two names as the last name so the alphabetic listings place him in the right order. He should put his name in the allotted spaces on the name change form. He may then clearly print his entire name across the top of the form.

When a form is received in this manner, the shortened name will be put on the RNAM screen, and will appear on class rosters & grade rosters. The long name will be added to the RCOM screen so it will print the full name on the official transcripts and diplomas. Since this is exceptional processing, and is not a practice we want to encourage, we will not be adjusting the name change form to accommodate the longer name option.

If a single name is too long for the space provided, we will put as much as will fit on the name screen (RNAM) and then create a long name segment on the record comment screen (RCOM). However, if an attempt is made to put two names in a name segment, which do not fit, we will not truncate one of the names or make the decision as to which name to use. We will require the student to select which name to use on the name screen and then put the full name on RCOM.

Since the Commencement area and College Offices need to know when graduating seniors have a name change, the Commencement area will run periodic queries to identify graduating seniors who have name changes made to their records. They will share these lists with the appropriate College Offices. The query will include the full long names
from RCOM.

All name change requests are processed in the Registrar’s Office in room 320 Lincoln Tower. If a College chooses, it may accept the request and documentation and forward it to the Registrar on behalf of the student. A Request for Change of Records form must be completed. An e-mailed request for name change can be accepted as the student’s signature only if it comes from the student’s e-mail address and the appropriate documentation has also been received. If the form, student signature, e-mail or the documentation is missing or unreadable, the entire request will be returned to the office that sent it to the OUR or to the student, if the student submitted the request directly to the OUR.

Name Change Exceptions:

The following cases require a student’s signature or request on an e-mail from their name.n address, but no documentation is required:

  • Changing middle name to middle initial or middle initial to middle name.
    - Brutus T. Buckeye to Brutus Theodore Buckeye
    - Brutus Theodore Buckeye to Brutus T. Buckeye
  • Adding a middle name only if the middle name already exists on RNAM:
    - Brutus Buckeye to Brutus Theodore Buckeye
  • Deleting a middle name as long as the middle name will still exist in the history
    on RNAM.
  • Adding a maiden name either as a second middle name or as part of the last name only if the maiden name already exists on RNAM:
    - Betty Jane Buckeye to Betty Jane Fan Buckeye
    - Betty Jane Buckeye to Betty Jane Fan-Buckeye
  • Changing a last name back to a maiden name only if the maiden name already exists
    on RNAM:

    - Betty Jane Buckeye to Betty Jane Fan

The following cases can be changed from the graduation lists sent from the Colleges to Commencement and do not require a student’s signature or documentation:

  • Adding or deleting a hyphen:
    - Mou Se to Mou-S
  • Adding or deleting an apostrophe:
    - Obrien to O’Brie
  • Splitting a name into two parts or combining two names:
    - JiChul (first name) to Ji Chul (first name or first & middle name)
    - Sung Gyu to Sunggyu
    - Xiao-Li to XiaoLi

If a College is building a record segment using the mini-build and makes an error, they may submit a name change form noting the fact they need their error corrected without requiring the student’s signature or documentation of the legal name.