Chosen Name Project

Students sitting at the memorial by the sunset

What is in a Name?

A person's name is the greatest connection to their own identity and individuality. Some might say it is the most important word in the world to that person. A person’s name is the one way we can easily get someone's attention.  Calling a person by their first name is a sign of courtesy, respect, and a way of recognizing that person.  Some individuals go by different names or nicknames during different parts of their lives (home, careers, family, friends, etc….).  

We Have Exciting News!

Beginning today, you now have the option to add a chosen name, your preferred gender, and pronoun identities to your Personal Information page in PROWL available through MyLMU. Once added, your chosen first name will be propagated into other LMU systems unless there are compliance reasons to continue using your legal name. Currently, your chosen first name will display in Brightspace, Degree Works, LEO, Handshake, Web CheckOut (SFTV), and AIM (utilized by DSS). Additional applications will be added to this list in late September. These applications include OneCard, Box, MyLMU, Campus Director (for Greek Life), Teams, and Zoom.

Related to gender and/or pronoun identities, please note that this information will not be shared with other systems. Only you will be able to view your personal gender and pronouns on your Personal Information page in PROWL. If you include or update your gender and/or pronoun identities, please note that this information will not be shared with the systems listed above.

Click the links for more information on How to Request a Chosen Name Update and its policies.

Questions can be submitted to:

  • Chosen Name: A chosen name is simply a name that a person uses in their daily life that is different than the name appearing on their legal records.

    Using a chosen is available to anyone at LMU. Some examples of people who are most likely to benefit from this opportunity include transgender and gender non-conforming members of the College, individuals who use a nickname or shortened version of their first name, or international students who want to use a different name while enrolled at Loyola Marymount University.

    LGBTQ2S+: Sexual orientations and gender identities that aren’t heterosexual or cisgender are often described by the acronym LGBTQ2S+. LGBTQ2S+ is an acronym that stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning, and Two-Spirit.

    Transgender: a term often used by people whose gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth. People whose gender identity falls outside of the gender binary (the idea that there are only two genders — man and woman) may also call themselves trans. It’s up to each individual to choose how they want to identify (in other words, no one else can decide if/when a person is or isn’t trans). Other terms to describe a gender identity that may be used by some people include genderqueer, gender fluid, gender non-conforming, non-binary and androgynous.

    Trans is not a sexual orientation — it’s a gender identity. “T” (for transgender/trans) is grouped with the sexual orientations in LGBTQ2S+ for many reasons, including shared civil and human rights activism and similar experiences of discrimination.

    Nonbinary: a person who doesn’t accept a society that only acknowledges the gender binary of man and woman and defines their gender outside of those norms. People who are non-binary may identify as having no gender, feel in between genders or have a gender that is not always the same. Individuals who identify as non-binary may or may not also identify as trans.


    • Gendered pronouns specifically reference someone’s gender: he/him/his or she/her/hers.
    • Non-gendered or nonbinary pronouns are not gendered specific and are most often used by people who identify outside of a gender binary. The most common set of nonbinary pronouns is they/them/their used in the singular (e.g., Jadzia identifies as genderqueer; they do not see themselves as either a woman or a man). Other nonbinary pronouns include ze (pronounced “zee”) in place of she/he, and hir (pronounced “here”) in place of his/him/her (e.g., Jadzia runs hir own business, but ze is more well-known as an author). The terms “it” or “he-she” are slurs used against transgender and gender-nonconforming individuals, and should not be used.
    • Other approaches to pronouns may include going simply by one’s name, not having a preference, or wanting to avoid pronouns altogether.

    QTPOC: Initialisms that stand for queer people of color and queer and/or trans people of color.

    Sacred Spaces: Loyola Marymount University is home to six spaces designed for Catholic worship on campus. From the Spanish gothic Chapel of the Sacred Heart to architect Frank Gehry's post-modern Chapel of the Advocate at the Law School, the university boasts some of the most beautiful and diverse worship spaces in all of Los Angeles.

    Examen: The examen is a prayerful reflection from the Spiritual Exercises which has become a key part of Jesuit life and which can have a powerful impact on the lives of those who use it. It consists of setting time aside each day (for Ignatius twice a day, at midday and the end of the day) to reflect prayerfully on the events of the day and where God has been in those events. 

    Gender Expression: The external display of one’s gender, through a combination of clothing, grooming, demeanor, social behavior, and other factors, generally made sense of on scales of masculinity, femininity, or another gender. Also referred to as “gender presentation.”