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Preferred Name Identification Cards: FAQs

What is a preferred first name?
A preferred first name is a name a student wishes to be known by that is different from a student’s legal name. Carthage students are able to request a college ID with their preferred first name and legal last name.

What is a legal name?
A legal name is a name that appears on your driver’s license, passport, birth certificate, or U.S. Social Security Card.

Am I required to use my preferred first name on my Carthage ID?
No. A preferred first name on your Carthage ID is optional. It is in no way a requirement. You may choose to have your legal first name on your ID.

Where will my preferred first name appear?
Your preferred first name will only appear on your Carthage ID card if requested.

Will my preferred first name appear in the online Carthage College directory?
No. Your legal name will appear in the Carthage College directory.

Where will my legal name be used?
Your legal name will be used in business and other College processes and systems including, but not limited to:

  • My.Carthage Portal
  • Schoology
  • Workday
  • Carthage online directory
  • Carthage email account
  • Voter ID cards
  • Transcripts
  • Academic certifications
  • Diplomas
  • Athletics rosters
  • Public Safety reports
  • Maxient Conduct System

Are there any preferred first name ID restrictions?
A preferred first name ID may not be used for purposes of fraud or misrepresentation. The College reserves the right to remove a preferred first name if it contains inappropriate or offensive language.

Does a preferred first name affect my legal name?
No. Requesting a preferred first name for your Carthage ID does not change your legal name.

Who will have access to my legal name?
College administrators, faculty, the Office of Public Safety, and your supervisor (if you are employed in a campus job) will have access to your legal name.

May I have a new photograph taken for my new Carthage ID?
Yes. When submitting the request form, you will have the option to submit a new photo to be printed on your preferred first name ID. A new photo is optional, and you may choose to keep your current ID photo. Your old photograph may still appear in other College systems, such as My.Carthage and Schoology.

Is my Carthage ID card a form of identification accepted off campus?
It is advisable to carry a government-issued form of ID such as a driver’s license or passport with you in order to access resources that are not on the Carthage campus.

How do I request a preferred first name ID?
Students can request a preferred first name ID by completing the request form. The Division of Student Affairs reviews all requests. After submitting the form, students can come to the Division of Student Affairs during office hours, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Friday, to have their new ID printed. Students must turn in their current Carthage ID to receive the new one.

What does a new ID card with my preferred name cost? 
A $30 fee for a new ID card will be assessed to the student’s account.

For more information

If you have more questions about requesting a preferred first name ID, please contact the Division of Student Affairs at or 262-551-5800.

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2021), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • More than 90% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit The Aspire Center.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. More than 90% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has ranked as a top Fulbright producer for four of the past five years. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors, and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from marketing to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from $25,000 up to full tuition. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about Intellectual Foundations.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 13:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked in the Top 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …