...if I'm trans or genderqueer?

Transitioning is a personal experience that means something different to every individual. There are no number of changes, nor a type of change, that a person needs to go through in order to be considered trans. Additionally, our office does not function as a gatekeeper for different communities or identities—we will neither assign an identity label onto you, nor will we prevent you from using a term that is meaningful to you. If you are exploring what gender means to you, and you think you might benefit from chatting with someone in our office, you're warmly encouraged to reach out.

The following information may be helpful to those who identify as trans, genderfluid, gender non-binary, or who are considering a gender transition. 

Some questions you might have:

Is gender inclusive housing available to me?

Yes! Gender inclusive housing is now available as a housing option to anyone at the College. Visit our page on gender inclusive housing to learn more.

Which restrooms may I use?

Harvard University includes gender identity in our non-discrimination statement, so people who use restrooms aligned with their gender identity are protected by the university. Furthermore, there is an ordinance in Cambridge and Boston that requires businesses to allow a person to use a bathroom aligned with their gender identity. If you face any hostility on campus related to your gender identity or expression and need immediate support or want to report the incident, you can reach out to HUPD at (617) 495-1212.

How do I access gender-affirming healthcare?

Health Insurance: Harvard's Blue Cross Blue Shield Plan covers gender-affirming surgeries (upper and lower). Details about the requirements for this coverage can be found at Harvard Student Transgender Health Policy. We acknowledge that this is a dense and technical document, so please feel free to reach out to us with any questions.

Hormones: Healthcare providers at University Health Services (UHS) are familiar with hormone therapy and have experience working with trans students. After speaking with a provider about your desire to pursue hormones, they will go over a consent form detailing the effects hormones may have on your body and will discuss necessary testing and follow-up appointments. Generally a referral to an endocrinologist is not needed, but the provider will discuss your specific needs based on your medical history.

How do I change my name or gender on Harvard documentation?

At this time only your official name can appear on your HUID card. However your official name can be a derivative of your legal name (e.g. your initials as opposed to your full legal name). Contact the Registrar's Office for this option. The Harvard Campus Services requires your legal name because they need to verify your legal identity when issuing an HUID, and the card must reflect this legal identity.

If you have legally changed your name or gender, you may change your official name or gender on the student record by completing this form and attaching supporting documentation. You may update your preferred name at any time via my.harvard.edu. If you need a diploma or transcript showing your preferred name, please visit the Registrar's office on the 4th floor of the Smith Campus Center or email them at transcript@fas.harvard.edu. If you have concerns about your name or gender matching your credentials but have not legally changed either, contact the Registrar's Office for assistance.

Is there a support group for trans students?

Support and Education Group for Trans Students

Thursdays, February 8 - April 26 (5:00-6:30pm)
Contact: Brandin Dear, MSW, LICSW (bdear@huhs.harvard.edu)

This is a confidential support and psycho-education group for undergraduate and graduate students who identify as transgender, gender queer, non-binary, gender non-conforming, or are questioning their gender identity. This group will provide a safe and affirming space to build community, share stories, process experiences, and learn strategies for navigating challenging situations. Topics include social and legal aspects of gender transition, coming out to family and friends, finding support, medical interventions, physical and mental health, safety issues, relationships, coming out in internships/job settings, and more.

This is a confidential group. If you are interested, please email Brandin Dear, MSW, LICSW (bdear@huhs.harvard.edu) for further details.

Is there a student organization for trans students?

Trans Task Force (TTF)

TTF is a community that centers trans and gender non-conforming people. Come to our Sunday meetings to hang out and have a nice time, and come take the streets with TTF at actions and protests. All are welcome; no identities assumed!

Subscribe to the TTF listserv at https://lists.hcs.harvard.edu/mailman/listinfo/transtaskforce.

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Who do I talk to if I've been discriminated against based on my sex or gender?

There are a number of possible resources you can turn to if you feel you've been harassed or discriminated against based on your gender and/or sex. You are, of course, welcome to come to us at the Office of BGLTQ Student Life—we are happy to talk to you about your experiences, and to help connect you with resources that can meet your needs. Additionally, the staff at the Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response, the Title IX Office, Counseling and Mental Health Services, the Bureau of Study Counsel, and the peer counseling groups are available to speak with you, and to help you process your experiences.

Some additional resources include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Your Proctor, Tutor, Resident Dean, Faculty Dean, or other residential staff
  • The BGLTQ Specialty Proctors and Tutors, which can be found here
  • The CARE (Consent Advocacy & Relationship Education) Proctors and Tutors, which can be found here

After speaking to any of the advisors mentioned before, you can continue to pursue the matter through informal mediation and conflict resolution in conjuction with the Title IX Office or the Office for Dispute Resolution, or through filing a formal complaint and involving the administrative board. Additionally, you might consider pursuing a No-Contact Order, a Cease-and-Desist Order, a No Trespassing Order, or an Abuse or Harassment Prevention Order from HUPD or the Middlesex County courts.

Please know that we at the Office of BGLTQ Student Life are a resource in situations where you feel threatened or discriminated against. Additionally, we can connect you with appropriate resources or help you through the process.