Including your name(s)

Bow Valley College honors three categories of name identity within the student profile for our systems:

  Legal and/or assigned name Preferred first name Traditional Indigenous name(s)
Description: The name on government-issued IDs (birth certificate, passport, driver’s license). A name that one commonly uses that is different from their legal name.    
The names given to individuals at different stages of life, can be inherited, transferred and/or chosen for them. The individual may or may not have Canadian Indigenous Ancestry to hold a traditional Indigenous name.
Used on:
  • Transcripts
  • T2202 tax receipts
  • Confirmation of enrolment and graduation letters
  • Mybvc, Brightspace and other BVC systems
  • Class lists
  • Student ID card
  • Student email
  •  As determined by student
Rationale: Legal names are required on these documents to ensure it matches the legal name that will appear on the recipient’s side and because it is a formal, procedural document. These day-to-day documents ensure students are addressed as they would normally prefer. Used at students’ discretion in respect of the inherent and legal rights of Indigenous Nations as sovereign peoples.


It is important that students be respected in their identity and in a matter that allows for choice throughout their student experience.

Your legal name is the name used in government records, and is used at BVC on official college documents and records such as:

  • Confirmation of enrolment and graduation letters
  • Parchments (diplomas and certificates), unless otherwise specified
  • Transcripts
  • T2202 tax receipts

Students are required to have both a Legal First Name and Legal Surname. We recognize that in some cultures, students do not have surnames on their official government ID. In these cases, a period (“.”) is used in our student system as a placeholder.

To change your legal name within our system, please use this form. Legal Photo Documentation must be included for change of name requests (ie: passport, driver’s license, permanent residency card).

Bow Valley College recognizes that some students prefer to be addressed by names other than their legal and/or assigned first names. For this reason, we invite those with preferred first names to identify it to be used wherever possible throughout your study period. A preferred first name is one by which you are primarily addressed, that is not your legal first name.

For example: 

  • Students who are called their legal middle name or other name, they may designate that name for their preferred name.
  • Students whose legal first name does not align with their expression and identity may designate a different and more suitable name as their preferred name.
  • Students can also use a nickname, or a traditional name given at birth as their preferred name.

If you declare a preferred first name, it will be used on:

  • MyBVC, Brightspace and other BVC systems
  • class lists
  • student ID card
  • your student email display name

Preferred first names will not appear on your official transcript.

You may request to have your preferred first name used on your parchment and printed in the convocation booklet when you apply to graduate.

Apply to Graduate

You may add, delete, or change your preferred first name at any time throughout your study period by using this form or by updating it through your MyBVC account. You do not need to provide any proof/identity documents to support this.

The intent of this option is to support principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion. Students’ preferred name updates must be made in support of this. The college reserves the right to remove or deny, with or without notice, the use of a preferred name if it is used for inappropriate purposes including, but not limited to, misrepresentation, avoiding legal obligation, or the use of offensive or derogatory language. Misuse may also result in response under the Learner Code of Conduct Policy.


The College respects the inherent and legal rights of Indigenous Nations as sovereign peoples recognizing that students of Canadian Indigenous Ancestry, and those with kinship and extended relations may hold/carry a traditional name in an Indigenous language which may or may not have an English translation. With respect to these ways of being and knowing, we invite you to include these name(s) in your declaration and exercise choice within the current system.

Students can use their names several ways:

  • Traditional names may be used for regular college interactions. Their traditional name is also listed as their preferred name in this case.
  • Those who identify as two-spirit students can share a preferred name aligned with expressions of gender identity which may be different from a legal name for day-to-day usage, as well as a traditional name for display on the final parchment. The preferred name is distinct from the traditional name in this example.
  • Traditional names may be included for limited uses such as inclusion on parchments and in the convocation booklet.

You may add, delete, or change traditional name at any time throughout your study period by updating this information through your MyBVC account.
Traditional Indigenous names will not appear on your official transcript.

You may request to have your traditional indigenous name used on your parchment and printed in the convocation booklet when you apply to graduate.

Apply to Graduate

Note: due to limitations within our Student Information System, names with some accents and diacritics may not be fully accommodated; staff in the Iniikokaan Centre will work with you to identify the most appropriate way to ensure your name is recorded. We are currently working on a major upgrade to a new student system that will more fully allow for names with accents and diacritics.


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  • If you are currently studying in a post-secondary program at BVC, please register for your courses via mybvc to ensure your enrolments and fees are processed appropriately.
  • Cart total based on domestic tuition rates. For information about International Tuition rates please see Additional Fees Apply
  • If you anticipate applying for a student loan, your payment will be refunded to you based on your loan award once your funding has been received by BVC.

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