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Chosen/Preferred Name Guidelines

State Center Community College District (SCCCD), which includes Fresno City College, Reedley College, Clovis Community College, Madera Community College, and Madera Community College at Oakhurst, recognizes that some students wish to identify themselves by a first name other than their legal first name.

To request a chosen/preferred name, current students can submit a chosen/preferred name request.  New or returning students can submit a chosen/preferred first name at the time of application through CCCApply.  It is important to understand that designating your chosen/preferred first name does not constitute a legal name change.  A students' legal name will continue to be used on certain college documents, such as transcripts and financial aid documents. A student's chosen/preferred first name will display in Canvas and Self-Service, including class rosters, and wait lists for use by instructors and departments. 

Please note it takes between 2-4 days to process chosen/preferred first name requests and for your chosen/preferred first name to appear in all systems that support a chosen/preferred first name.

Frequently Asked Questions

A chosen/preferred name is a name you can designate to be used in some systems, such as Canvas and Self-Service.  It is a name that you wish to be known or identified by and is different from your legal name.

There are two ways to submit a chosen/preferred first name depending on if you are a current, new, or returning student.

  1. Current students - Submit a chosen/preferred first name request.
    View the instructions
  2. New/returning students - Submit your chosen/preferred first name on your admission application.

Chosen/preferred names are limited to first name only. Chosen/preferred names are limited to alphabetical characters, a hyphen (-) and space. Generally, you can request any chosen/preferred name, but the colleges reserve the right to reject a chosen/preferred name if it is used inappropriately, such as misrepresentation or fraud or is deemed inappropriate.  Such usage will also subject the student to disciplinary action in accordance with college policy.

Examples of chosen/preferred first names that will not be approved:

  • Names containing foul or inappropriate language
  • Names used for the purpose of misrepresentation

Chosen/preferred first names will be used in Canvas and Self-Service, including class rosters and wait lists for use by instructors and departments.

Yes, your chosen/preferred first name will appear for all SCCCD colleges if you attend more than one college in the district. 

Chosen/preferred first names will not be used in cases where the legal name is required, including, but not limited to, financial aid documents, official transcripts, diplomas, payroll records, and federal immigration documents. In some cases, if you use a chosen/preferred name, it might be necessary to clarify that your chosen/preferred name is different from your legal name. Also, as the campus is engaged in several projects involving student information systems, some systems may not be able to accommodate the chosen/preferred name.

Your chosen/preferred first name can be changed only once per semester. However, it is recommended that changes to your chosen/preferred name remain minimal to avoid confusion by your instructors and fellow students.

Yes. If you have designated a chosen/preferred name and later decide that you would prefer to use only your legal name, contact the college Admissions and Records Office.​​

You can change your legal name by completing and submitting the Request for Name Change Form (available in the college Admissions and Records Office). You will need to present official documentation that your name was legally changed.