LGBTQIA+ Resources

Gender Inclusivity at SAIC

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago is committed to an inclusive culture for all sex and gender identities. Over the last 5 years, SAIC has worked collaboratively across departments and students to effectively support the inclusion of our LGBTQ+ community. This site provides varied information, including ways to get involved to a listing of local resources. If you'd like to learn more, Multicultural Affairs in the Office of Student Affairs is a resource to you, and can connect you to other resources in our community.

Listed below are the many ways SAIC is committed to gender inclusion. This includes information on community education, gender inclusive campus-wide facilities, preferred name processes, getting involved in the community, and access to resources.

The language and terminology individuals and communities use to self identify is continues to evolve. Please use this resource or this resource as a foundation guide to understanding terminology and definitions. 

While terminology is important to be aware of, it's important to understand that an individual may choose to self-identify in other terms. It's an important practice to ask how someone would like to be identified.


Subject: 1 registered to vote. 
Object: They tried to convince 2 that giraffes could fly.
Possessive: 3 bike is unlocked.
Possessive Pronoun: That notebook is 4.
Reflexive: 1 spilled tea on 5.
1 2 3 4 5
e/ey em eir eirs emself
[name] [name] [name] [name]'s [name]'self
they them their theirs themself
she her her hers herself
sie hir hir hirs hirself
per per per pers perself
ve ver vis vers verself
he him his his himself
zie zir zir zirs zirself

SAIC community members may choose to display their pronouns.

Multicultural Affairs provides SAIC lanyards with pronouns. If you're interested in receiving one, please reach out to

You can include your pronouns on Canvas, Use this guide to set your pronouns on Canvas. 

Pronouns can also be added on your email signature, using this email-signature generator

Specifically, our campus staff have received updated trainings on inclusivity in the community. Through these workshops and trainings, staff continue to develop their understanding of how to support and be an ally for all sex and gender identities.

Staff in the Office of Student Affairs and members of the President's Cabinet have completed training by the TransLife Center at Chicago House and the Brave Space Alliance to help them better support trans and gender non-conforming community members. As community leaders, student employees including Residence Life Resident Advisors and Orientation Leaders complete an annual training on trans and gender inclusion, provided by Brave Space Alliance. 

During Orientation, SAIC community members complete a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion course. This online program provides individuals with language, and a deeper awareness about sex, gender identity, gender expression, and gender representation. For new incoming students, this course equips them with skills to engage in meaningful conversation and sustain an environment of inclusivity for all community members.

Throughout the year, Multicultural Affairs distributes a zine titled, Gender is Extraordinary. This zine, written and illustrated by an SAIC alum, prompts the community to consider gender in a new light and help the community to understand what respect, acceptance, and allyship can mean to trans and gender non-conforming people. If you'd like to receive another copy, please email

Students may choose the name to be referred by. Any community member may, at any time, change their first name through SAIC Self Service (the same application used to register for classes). If a name was provided on their SAIC application under the Preferred Name field, Students will automatically have this name used when they arrive on campus. 


Students, Staff, and Faculty can at any time, change their name on SAIC PeopleSoft Self Service by following this procedure.

  • Navigate to
  • Click "Self Service" under Quicklinks menu, on the left side of the page
  • Login with your SAIC username and password
  • Select the "Profile" tab
  • Under "Personal Details," select "Preferred Name"
  • Edit your Preferred Name to reflect your preference
  • Confirm your change by clicking "Save"

Changes to preferred name in Peoplesoft Self Service will automatically be reflected the following areas: ARTICard, scanning into buildings, class roster, residence hall housing database, Engage Event management site, graduation-related materials, course evaluations, media center checkouts, and library checkouts.


Students, Staff, and Faculty can at any time, change their name on Canvas by emailing

Graduation Materials:

Graduating students can indicate which name they would like to be displayed by submitting the Graduation Application. This name will appear on graduation materials, including the program, diploma, and slides. 

SAIC community members have options for specifying their pronouns, if they choose.

  • Multicultural Affairs provides SAIC lanyards with pronouns. If you're interested in receiving one, please reach out to or visit the Student Life office, Sullivan 1203.
  • Pronouns can be included to your user profile on Canvas. To access this feature, follow the steps below, or use this guide to set your pronouns in Canvas. (Pronouns display in the following areas: Comment Fields, Discussions, Inbox, People Page (Course and Groups), User Profile, and User Settings).
  1. In the Left Navigation bar, click Account, then click the Settings Link
  2. Click the Edit Settings button
  3. Select your personal Pronouns from the drop-down menu, after the Name fields
  4. Click the Update Settings button (It's Blue)

Please reach out to Katrina Valera, Director of Student Affairs for Diversity and Inclusion for any questions at

Students, Staff, and Faculty are able to change their Display Email Name on their SAIC google accounts by following the steps below.

  • Navigate to 
  • Login with your SAIC username and password
  • Click the Gear Icon in the upper right corner and select "Settings"
  • Select the "Accounts" tab from the top navigation bar 
  • Scroll down to "Send mail as" and you should see a list of all your email addresses
  • To the right of each email address select "Edit Info"
  • In the popup window, enter the name you want to appear when you send emails
  • Repeat for each email address

There are times when legal names must be used to meet current federal regulations. Official transcripts registration forms submitted to SAIC use legal name. This includes official registration forms, financial aid documents, admissions registration, and email alias use legal name.

If a student completes the legal-name change process, they should contact the registrar to provide documentation (court order, marriage certificate, divorce decree, etc.) of this change. Documents required for legal name change vary by state. Click here to learn more. 

Alums may submit this documentation to the Registrar's Office to process the legal-name change. Students will need appropriate legal documentation to change their last name with the Registrar.

Restroom Inclusion Policy

SAIC recognizes the human dignity of all its students, faculty, staff, and visitors and is committed to providing equitable access to campus restrooms. SAIC values gender as being broader than a female/male binary and is inclusive of multiple gender identities. Individuals are allowed to access restrooms in alignment with their gender identity. In addition, gender-neutral restrooms are open for people of all identities and expressions, as well as people who have ability, sensory, and privacy needs.

Gender-neutral restrooms are safe for transgender, gender non-conforming, genderqueer people, as well as people of all gender identities and expressions. Below is a list of gender-neutral restrooms at SAIC. Gender neutral restrooms are included in each residence hall.

The multi-stall gender inclusive restrooms offer floor to ceiling privacy in all individual stalls.

Location Floor Room
33 Building LL2
MacLean 1 115
  4 427
  13 1319
2 208
  8 810
  10 1016
  11 1118
  13 1319
  14 1430
  15 1501
162 N State Street Residencies 4  404 B
280 Building 2
Sullivan Center 12 1254
Sharp Building 2 250
  3 341
  10 1004
Jones Hall
3 309
  15 1502C

SAIC residence halls are gender inclusive, which ensures that living arrangements are welcoming for all members of our community. Housing applicants may choose to be identified and assigned to roommates by either their sex or gender identity.

For more information regarding Housing and Residence Life, visit:

The Student Health Insurance Plan made available to SAIC students includes Transgender coverage. These benefits include medical, psychological, and other counseling; surgery; and hormone therapy. 

More information regarding the Student Health Insurance Plan designed for students and their dependents, can be found at

Questions regarding benefits may be directed to the insurance plan administrator:
Academic HealthPlans

Student-led Groups are an opportunity to unite students who identify with the LGBTQ+  and allies. These student-led groups build community in programs, and organize around issues affecting them and their communities. 

If you're interested in starting a new group, contact to learn more about starting a student group.

The League works towards change at SAIC to make the school a safer and more comfortable place for transgender, gender nonconforming, and queer students. It aims to educate our community: students, faculty, staff, and administration, about the needs of trans* people and work to have those needs met.

Join now

There are many resources available to you that provide information on support, advocacy, and learning for LGBTQ+ people, their allies, and their families. Click on the resource title to be directed to their sites. 

The Howard Brown Health Center

Multiple sites

Sites all over the Chicagoland area - as North as Rogers Park, as South as Englewood. Howard Brown Health was founded in 1974 and is now one of the nation's largest LGBTQ organizations. HBH serves folks with flexibility around affordable care. Howard Brown Health serves both youths and adults, in its diverse health and social service delivery system focused around seven major programmatic divisions: primary medical care, behavioral health, research, HIV/STI prevention, youth services, elder services, and community initiatives. Howard Brown Health serves women, trans and nonbinary folks, men, infants, youth, and children.  

Broadway Youth Center

4009 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL 60613

The Broadway Youth Center of Howard Brown Health, is a resource for LGBTQ youth and young people experiencing homelessness of housing instability. Here, people can seek refuge and community, as well as medical, social, and mental health care services. 

The Center on Halsted

3656 N. Halsted St. Chicago, IL 60613

Center on Halsted in Boystown/Lakeview neighborhood is a comprehensive community center dedicated to advancing community and securing the health and well-being of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) people of Chicagoland. The Center on Halsted is open daily, 8:00am - 9:00pm.
The Center is a welcoming environment that provides programs and services that include volleyball, dance performances and cooking classes, rapid HIV testing, group therapy and vocational training.  
Center on Halsted also serves as an incubator for a number of smaller LGBTQ non-profit organizations, called Resident Partners. To Resident Partners, the Center provide operational support, space, and resources for organizations that may otherwise find it difficult to interact and grow.

Genderqueer Chicago

This is a free and open community group and blog that brings people together through discussion that invites people to talk and think about gender in different ways. Genderqueer Chicago increases the visibility of gender-variant people, and educates the larger city of Chicago on issues of importance to the gender-variant community. Genderqueer holds peer-facilitated weekly meetings and city-wide activities. Meetings are held at the Center on Halsted.

The Chicago Freedom School

719 S. State St, Floor 4. Chicago, IL 60605

The Chicago Freedom School is innovative in it's approach to civic engagement, leadership development, and movement building. Their anti-oppression trainings, resources, and programs invite young people and allies to deepen their understanding and develop strategies for social change.

Chicago Women's Health Center

1025 W. Sunnyside, Suite 201. Chicago, IL 60640

Chicago Women's Health Center facilitates the empowerment of women and trans people by providing access to health care and health education in a respectful environment. 

TransLife Center at the Chicago House

1925 N. Clybourn Ave. Chicago, IL 60614

TransLife Center and the Chicago House provides comprehensive programming and support to transgender individuals. Their resources include health, housing, legal, employment, and HIV services. TransLife returns to SAIC to lead workshops for student leaders, faculty, and staff. 

GLAAD: We Happy Trans

GLAAD works toward social change through the use of media. GLAAD accelerates acceptance for LGBTQ people by shaping the media narrative and provoking dialogue.  

Intersex Society of America

The Intersex Society of North America (ISNA) is devoted to systemic change to end shame, secrecy, and unwanted genital surgeries for people born with an anatomy that someone decided is not standard for either male or female. ISNA includes information and resources about disorders of sex development, health care, and overall well-being for intersex people, their families, and clinicians.  

The National LGBTQ Task Force

The Task Force is committed to building a future where everyone is free to be themselves in every aspect of their lives. LGBTQ people face barriers in every aspect of their lives: in housing, employment, healthcare, retirement, and basic human rights. That the Task Force is training and mobilizing activists across the nation to deliver a world where there are no barriers.



Scarleteen is a queer-founded and queer-led organization and web clearinghouse that provides inclusive, comprehensive, and progressive sexuality, relationships, and health education, and information for teens and emerging adults. Scarleteen provides thoughts of pages of online content, interactive services, and referrals to sexual/reproductive healthcare services.


With 400 chapters across the United States and Puerto Rico, this national network is committed to advancing equality through support, education, and advocacy in the federal, state, and local levels. PFLAG has been a source of information for LGBTQ+ youth, their families, and their allies. Through their advocacy work, PFLAG reinforces the importance of learning in supportive environments.

Refuge Restrooms

A searchable web application that can locate accessible restrooms for transgender, intersex, and gender nonconforming individuals. Users can search for restrooms within their proximity.

Trans Student Educational Resource

Trans Student Educational Resource is a youth-led organization dedicated to transforming the educational environment for trans and gender nonconforming students through advocacy and empowerment. The Trans Student Educational Resource provides source material to educate the public and teach trans activists how to be effective organizers. Dependent on an intersectional framework of activism, the Trans Student Educational Resource seeks to use collaborative action to end oppression.

The Trevor Project

The Trevor Project is a national organization that provides crisis intervention for LGBTQ young adults. The Trevor Project includes a support center where LGBTQ youth and allies can find answers to commonly-asked questions.