Transgender Frequently Asked Questions

Gender identity, gender expression and transitioning is all new to me, can you provide some basic information?

Many people refrain from talking about sexual orientation and gender identity and expression because it feels taboo, or because they’re afraid of saying the wrong thing. Our Glossary 101 was developed for the University of Oregon Bridges Panel and was written to help give people the words and meanings to make conversations easier and more comfortable. In addition to reviewing this glossary, you may want to explore our main page to help you get informed and identify the resources on campus to help you become a LGBTQIA+ ally.

What is the best way to support and respect someone who is transgender?

  • Do not share their trans status unless the person specifically tells you that it is okay
  • Respect privacy
  • Learn pronouns and names
  • Refer to them how they wish to be addressed (this may differ from legal paperwork)
  • It is okay to ask about names/pronouns
  • If you aren’t comfortable asking, then keep it gender neutral until you know for sure

*Source: Trans Affirming Spaces

For more ways to support and respect someone who is transgender, review the Trans Etiquette list developed by the Division of Student Life.

How can I change my name or gender identification in Oregon?

We recommend that employees who wish to change their name or gender marker on state identification (birth certificate, driver's license, etc.) consult Lambda Legal, ResourcesPDX and the Oregon DMV website for more information. ResourcesPDX has a step by step guide to changing gender on legal identification documents in Oregon. Residents of Lane County can download the necessary gender and name change documents here..  Two other helpful resources are Transponder and Basic Rights Oregon.

Additionally, we encourage employees whose preferred name differs from their legal one to fill out the Preferred First Name form under "Personal Information" in DuckWeb.

I’m transitioning and need to speak with someone in Benefits about my current coverage; who should I contact? 

Contact the UO benefits office at or 541-346-3085

I’ve been planning my gender transition and would like support in the workplace. What kind of support can you offer?

If you are seeking additional support please contact Jen Mirabile, Sr. HR Programs Coordinator, at 541-346-2195 or to discuss your specific concerns and needs.