Ohio University is working to spread preferred pronouns and names across as many technology platforms as possible over the next year. This includes allowing students who are looking to change their pronouns to do so without being asked for their “preferred” pronouns.
“We have seen an increasing diversity of gender expression at Ohio University and across the country,” said LGBT Center Director Micah McCarey. “And the point is to get people to respect the personal use of pronouns more than a preference.”
The LGBT Center, the University’s Registrar’s Office, and the Office of Information Technology (ILO) have all been key offices in supporting this change and providing ways for students to be authentic themselves.
“We are committed to supporting initiatives around preferred pronouns and names, including protecting personal information and ensuring that names and pronouns are correctly displayed in university systems,” said Chris Ament, director of the university. ‘information.
One change includes the removal of “preferred” from the pronoun label in the MyOHIO student center. University registrar Debra Benton said her office was happy to work with the ILO to make the change.
“Our students are fortunate to have Micah McCarey lead the LGBT center and promote respect for personal pronouns,” Benton added.
Cody Huebner, a graduate assistant of the Housing Ambassador Program with Housing and Residence Life who identifies as gay, is passionate about advocating for operational fairness for students. Acknowledging the discrepancy between using the ‘preferred’ wording before a person’s pronouns, Cody recently reached out to the LGBT Center to inquire about the possibility of officially updating the pronoun terminology.
“While this may seem small, this subtle distinction between someone’s preference for pronouns and just the pronouns they use can make the difference between a student (or staff member) feeling out of place, and I am delighted to be part of this initiative, ”said Huebner.
In 2015, OHIO implemented a policy that allows students to be identified by the name and / or pronoun they use. This included updating the MyOHIO student center so that students could update their name and pronouns, as well as modifying other systems so that professors could access this information. Ohio University was one of the first universities in the state to take this step.
“We live in a society where we tend to make assumptions about the pronouns a person uses based on their appearance,” McCarey said. “However, the Pronouns Policy allowed students to share their names and / or pronouns and allowed instructors to include this information in their class lists.”
OHIO students, faculty and staff can learn more about updating pronouns and nouns on theStudent Names FAQ Page. Anyone who notices an app displaying pronouns or names incorrectly should contact the IT helpdeskto solve the problem.