Gender Identity Initiative

Our Goal

The Gender Identity Initiative (GII) aims to identify and implement changes to MIT systems that will improve inclusive representation of gender identities while protecting individual privacy, enabling greater autonomy, and meeting legal requirements. This includes legal sex, gender identity, name, and pronouns.

Who We Are

The Gender Identity Initiative consists of a Working Group and a Steering Committee. The GII Working Group includes staff with a wide range of perspectives and expertise along with student representatives.The Working Group presents recommendations for feedback and approval to the GII Steering Committee. The current membership of both groups is listed on this page.

Our Guiding Principles

The work of the GII is guided by six important principles, the first five of which were drawn from a 2022 NASEM report. These principles are:

  1. Inclusiveness: People deserve to count and be counted.
  2. Precision: Use precise terminology that reflects the constructs of interest. 
  3. Autonomy: Respect identity and autonomy. 
  4. Parsimony: Collect only necessary data.
  5. Privacy: Use data in a manner that benefits respondents and respects their privacy and confidentiality.
  6. Transparency: Share relevant information in a clear, accessible, and timely manner.

Project Phases

Given the complexity of MIT’s student and staff systems and the sensitivity of gender identity information, the GII is approaching the project in phases.

  • Phase One (summer 2022) focused on how the Institute collects, stores, uses, and protects gender and sex data.
  • Phase Two (fall 2022 – spring 2023) gathered community input and made recommendations related to personal pronouns, forms of address, and legal/directory names.
  • Phase Three (summer 2023 – present) is working to implement those recommendations in the main systems of record for students (WebSIS) and employees (SAP).

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I report a gender-related issue with an MIT system? 

If you experience an issue or problem with an MIT system that is related to gender identity, you can email us at

What do I do if I have experienced or witnessed gender-based discrimination or harassment at MIT? 

Report the incident to the Institute Discrimination & Harassment Response Office (IDHR).

GII Steering Team

  • Ramona Allen, Vice President for Human Resources
  • Dan Hastings, Interim Vice Chancellor
  • Lauryn McNair, Assistant Dean of Intercultural Engagement for LBGTQ+, Women and Gender Services
  • Karl Reid, Vice President for Equity and Inclusion
  • Mark Silis, Vice President IS&T

GII Working Group

  • Bill Brids: IS&T
  • Gabe Campos: Human Resources
  • Liz Cerrato: Human Resources
  • Meg Churhan: Institute Discrimination and Harassment Response
  • Kyle Filipe: IS&T
  • Chad Galts: Institute Community and Equity Office
  • Sucharita Ghosh: Atlas Service Center
  • Cal Gunnarson: Graduate student (Biological Engineering)
  • Peter Hayes: Registrar’s Office
  • Sarah Hendrick: Alumni Association
  • Ariel Leitao Leonelli: Admissions Office
  • John McDonald: Division of Student Life
  • Lauryn McNair: Intercultural Engagement/ LBGTQ+ Services, Women and Gender Services
  • Meaghan Murray: Human Resources
  • Beth Milnes: Institute for Data, Systems, and Society
  • Rachel Ornitz: AeroAstro; LBGTQ+ Employee Resource Group
  • Allison Romantz: Office of General Counsel
  • Jon Schwarz: MIT Institutional Research
  • Brian Schuetz: MIT Health
  • Kate Trimble: Office of the Vice Chancellor
  • Undergraduate student representative

Other Resources

  • LBGTQ+ Services ensures a safe and supportive campus-wide community where students of diverse gender, romantic, and sexual identities are all welcomed as equals. Check out the Trans resource page that compiles information from across MIT for trans students to better navigate resources and systems. Sign up for the LBGTQ+ Office’s weekly emails or monthly newsletter for services, programs, and events. You can also follow the office on Instagram @rainbow_lounge_mit.
  • Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay, Transgender, Queer (LBGTQ) Employee Resource Group promotes an inclusive community for lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, and queer employees. Subscribe to the QStaff mailing list or contact the ERG co-leads.
  • MIT’s Nondiscrimination Policy: The Institute prohibits discrimination against individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, or national or ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, employment policies, scholarship and loan programs, and other Institute administered programs and activities.