Emailing Professors

Coming out to your professors can be an emotional transition.  

Sending a simple email explaining your situation to professors or classmates could make transitioning much easier. Emails can be useful in explaining your situation to professors that previously knew you by a different name. They can also be useful in informing professors that you go by a different name and gender than the one they have on the class roster.

Some general ideas of what to say in an email are:

  • Statement of the name/gender they have on class roster.
  • State chosen name and gender ("I would like to be referred to by ____ pronouns").
  • Brief explanation ("I identify as trans, which means _____ to me.").
  • "I prefer for no one to know about my trans status" vs. "I would be willing to talk about being trans as it related to class discussion" (depending on class and personal preference).
  • Thank them for being understanding.
  • Say they can email you if they have questions.
  • Provide your contact information.
  • Provide them with relevant websites for more information.

A sample email might look like this:

Professor ___________,

 I am a student in your (insert class name here). I am getting in contact with you to let you know that I identify as (insert identity here). My name will probably show up on your roster as (insert legal name here), but I actually go by (insert chosen name here) and (insert chosen pronouns) pronouns. I will be putting (insert chosen name here) on my assignments and would appreciate it if you called me that in class. If you have any questions for me regarding this, please don't hesitate to contact me. My email address is (insert email address here) and my phone number is (insert phone number here).

 Thank you very much for your understanding,

 (sign with chosen name)