Columbia College University Senators Jared Odessky, Marc Heinrich, and Ramis Wadood sent out the below email regarding the new email aliases sent out to students this morning, and they’re not happy.
They’d previously been in contact with CUIT about creating new email aliases “especially for trans* identified students who wanted to display a name different from the one on their official documents” and to “create a more public-friendly alias.” CUIT told them it couldn’t happen this summer, then shocked us all with our new aliases this morning. Check your inbox, but we don’t see how the new aliases are any better than what we currently have (as most seem to follow a first initial, middle initial, last name, 4-digit UNI number format), and students have no choice in the matter.
If you’d like to give feedback to your senators as they continue to
pester communicate with CUIT, you can do that.
Dear Columbia College,
You may have received an email from CUIT this morning indicating that an email alias was created to better reflect your name.
We brought the email alias issue to the attention of CUIT last year on several occasions, through the Senate Information and Communications Technology Committee as well as informal avenues. They had told us that providing email aliases wasn’t within their bandwidth for this summer, but it looks like that changed, and we certainly applaud their efforts at innovation and thank them for working with us.
One of our top concerns all along was the option to request a specific name, especially for trans* identified students who wanted to display a name different from the one on their official documents. Another goal was to create a more public-friendly alias that would work well in external communications, such as when reaching out to potential employers. Ultimately, however, students were not notified that CUIT was moving forward with rolling out aliases until this morning, and we were not consulted on what format this would take. We are worried that a change was made without achieving either of these aims.
While we are in contact with CUIT about these concerns, we also want to hear from you and ensure that your opinions are being communicated directly to CUIT. We set up a Google form (on the new LionMail Drive!) to record your responses. You will not be required to log in to LionMail to fill out the form, and leaving your UNI is strictly optional. If you would prefer for us not to use your response in communications with CUIT, please indicate this in the text box.
The form is available at this link: https://docs.google.com/a/columbia.edu/forms/d/1nXklV1zIdYGojpkqgfSdwnMhWzYXB1xhkt948w6mymw/viewform
Hope you’re enjoying your summer, and see you in the fall!
All the best,
Jared Odessky, CC’15
Marc Heinrich CC’16
Ramis Wadood, CC’16
University Senators imagined as United States Senators reading an email via Shutterstock