WPI PERA Department Transgender Student Inclusion Policy

Transgender Policy Header Photo - WPI Athletics 2022

Introduction

WPI’s Department of Athletics and Recreation (PERA) is committed to maintaining a diverse community with an atmosphere of mutual respect and appreciation of differences, including supporting the gender identity, gender expression, and sex assigned at birth and other intersecting identities of WPI students. This policy facilitates and encourages the participation of students and student-athletes of all genders and gender identities, including transgender, gender expansive, and non-binary student athletes, in intercollegiate athletics, club sports, intramural sports, and physical education at WPI.     

This policy has been developed in conjunction with the members of the PERA Department, Dean of Students, Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Multicultural Education, Student Development and Counseling Center, General Counsel, and WPI students.    

WPI Varsity Athletics – NCAA Policy on Transgender Student-Athlete Participation1    

The NCAA transgender student-athlete participation policy aligns with the policies of the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee and International Olympic Committee (IOC) and takes a sport-by-sport approach.    

Specifically, transgender participation for each NCAA sport is determined by the policy for the national governing body (NGB) of that sport.  If there is no NGB policy for a sport, the policy of that sport's international federation policy is followed.  If there is no international federation policy, the  IOC policy criteria is followed.    

Effective for the 2022 Winter and Spring Championships – Transgender student-athletes must provide documentation within 4 weeks before the selection date for their championship that meets the criteria in the 2010 NCAA Policy.    

  • The NCAA’s dates, deadlines, and total serum testosterone thresholds are available here.  
  • Impacted student-athletes should contact Shannah Dalton, Associate Head Athletic Trainer at sldalton@wpi.edu.    

Effective August 1, 2022 – Transgender student-athletes must provide documentation that meets the criteria in the 2010 NCAA Policy,  plus meet the sport standard for documented testosterone levels at the beginning of their competition season and again six (6) months later.   

  • This means that student-athletes who have already been competing do not need to demonstrate the newly adapted sport-specific testosterone levels for the entire prior year if they are not available.  
  • For participation in NCAA championships, transgender student-athletes must additionally provide documentation of testosterone levels to the CSMAS with laboratory work completed within four weeks of the championship selections.  
  • Impacted student-athletes should contact Shannah Dalton, Associate Head Athletic Trainer at sldalton@wpi.edu.   

Effective August 1, 2023 – Transgender student-athletes must provide documentation that meets the sport-specific standard submitted twice annually (once at the beginning of competition season and the second six (6) months following) for one year.   

  • This process will continue annually for eligible student-athletes.  
  • For participation in NCAA championships, transgender student-athletes must additionally provide documentation of testosterone levels to the CSMAS with laboratory work completed within four weeks of the championship selections.  

Visit the NCAA Transgender Student-Athlete Participation Policy page for additional information.    

A WPI student-athlete who has completed, plans to initiate, or is in the process of taking testosterone-suppressing medications or hormones must submit the request to participate WPI’s NCAA varsity athletic teams in writing to the Shannah Dalton, Associate Head Athletic Trainer upon matriculation or when the decision to undergo hormonal treatment is made. This allows PERA to help facilitate the student-athlete’s participation in compliance with NCAA policy.    

Student-Athlete’s Responsibility:    

  1. Submit a request to Shannah Dalton, Associate Head Athletic Trainer at sldalton@wpi.edu to participate on a sports team in writing upon matriculation or when there is a decision to undergo hormonal treatment.  
  2. Obtain a letter from your treating physician documenting your intention to transition or transition status. The letter should include the prescribed hormone treatment and document your testosterone levels, if relevant.  
  3. Meet with the WPI representative (Shannah Dalton) to discuss the NCAA policy and eligibility requirements.    

Once the student-athlete submits the request, they can expect the following:    

  1. The Associate Head Athletic Trainer will meet with the student-athlete to discuss NCAA policy and eligibility requirements.  
  2. If hormone treatment is involved in the student-athlete’s transition, the Associate Head Athletic Trainer will notify the NCAA by completing required forms.  
  3. The NCAA, including the CSMAS Medical Review Panel will review the required forms and communicate its decision to WPI.  The Associate Head Athletic Trainer will discuss the decision with the student-athlete.  
  4. All information about a student-athlete’s compliance with NCAA policy, including their NCAA required forms and medical information, will remain confidential and only shared on a need-to-know basis.

Visit Transgender Student-Athlete Eligibility Review Process for more information.   

  

WPI Physical Education   

Anyone participating in WPI’s Physical Education courses may participate in accordance with their gender identity, should that be relevant, regardless of any medical treatment. WPI offers an array of PE courses for all activity levels. Students should contact Steph Riley-Schafer, Physical Education Director at sschafer@wpi.edu with any questions.  

  

WPI Club Sports    

Student-athletes who participate in club sports governed by a national governing body will follow the transgender athlete policy required by that national governing body. Student-athletes whose club sports are not governed by a national governing body will follow the WPI policy below for WPI intramural sports. Students should contact Ann McCarron, Associate Athletic Director at amccarron@wpi.edu with any questions.  

  

WPI Intramural Sports   

Student-athletes who participate in WPI intramural sports may participate in accordance with their gender identity, should that be relevant, regardless of any medical treatment. Students should contact Joe Nichols, Recreation Coordinator at jmnichols@wpi.edu.  

  

Team Uniforms    

All transgender student-athletes will have access to uniforms that are appropriate for their sport and that they feel comfortable wearing. No student-athlete will be required to wear a gender uniform that conflicts with their gender identity.    

Separate rules may apply for Varsity Swimming and Diving.  Please contact Shannah Dalton, Associate Head Athletic Trainer at sldalton@wpi.edu.  

  

WPI Facilities – Changing Areas, Toilets, Showers    

All transgender student-athletes will have access to WPI locker room, shower, and toilet facilities consistent with their gender identity.     

In addition, at WPI, gender inclusive locker room facilities are available at the following locations:  

  • Harrington Auditorium First Floor, near Forkey Meeting Room (single stall shower, private restroom and changing area).  
  • Harrington Auditorium Mezzanine Floor Locker Room 7 (lockers, single stall shower, private restroom and changing area). May be unavailable during Athletic contests.  
  • Sports & Recreation Center Third Floor between Recreation Locker Rooms (includes private, single use restroom, shower and changing area, no lockers)  
  • Sports & Recreation Center Pool, First Floor (includes private, single use restroom, shower and changing area, no lockers)  

  

Travel    

All student-athletes will be assigned to share hotel rooms based on their gender identity, with a recognition that any student who needs extra privacy will be accommodated whenever possible.    

Prior to traveling, WPI coaches and administrators will work with student-athletes, regardless of gender identity, to determine their preferences regarding locker room and training accommodations.     

WPI administrators will work with the host institution to ensure it has safe and reasonable accommodations and that student-athletes' needs are met. WPI will not identify the gender identity of any student-athlete to the host institution unless the student-athlete prefers to be identified.     

If a student-athlete would like announcers/coaches/officials/etc. to use specific pronouns, WPI will notify the host institution prior to the team’s arrival to ensure this occurs. Prior to the start of competition, WPI coaches should confirm with game management staff that a student’s desired pronouns will be used.  

  

Education within PERA  

All members of the WPI PERA department will receive information and education about transgender identities, institutional and conference non-discrimination policies, the use of chosen names and pronouns, and expectations for creating a respectful climate for all students, regardless of their gender identity.  

  

Names & Pronouns  

In all cases, teammates, coaches, game management personnel, and all other staff in PERA should refer to all student-athletes by the student-athlete’s stated or preferred name and pronouns. This applies regardless of whether the student-athlete has formally changed their name on any identity documents or obtained a court order changing their name.   

Media - All publicized sports information, such as programs, announcements, and press releases, about student-athletes should also use the student-athlete’s stated or preferred name and pronouns.  

According to the NCAA, all PERA staff authorized and will interact with the media should be provided education regarding proper terminology, use of names and pronouns, and school and athletics conference policies regarding the participation of transgender student-athletes. PERA will undergo annual training during departmental workshops, staff meetings, and educational emails.    

During media sessions, medical information and gender identity will remain private. WPI will promote the visibility of transgender student-athletes only when approved by the student-athlete. WPI will continue to promote, provide resources, and support the LGBTQ+ community within the media (Instagram, Athletic website, etc.).  

  

Enforcement and Non-Retaliation    

Any member of the WPI Athletics community who has been found to have violated this policy by threatening to withhold athletic opportunity or harassing any student on the basis of their gender identity or expression or transgender or gender non-binary status, or by sharing private medical information, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including discharge or expulsion from the university. Any member of the WPI Athletic community who becomes aware of conduct that violates this policy should report the conduct to the Director of Athletics.    

Student/Employee inquiries concerning retaliation or discrimination, or harassment based on sex, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, or pregnancy should be referred to the WPI Title IX Office

  

Additional WPI Resources         

Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Multicultural Education (ODIME)  

Contact: Mia-Kay Fuller  

  • Assistant Director Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Multicultural Education  
  • Email: mfuller@wpi.edu  
  • Phone: (508) 831-5819  
  • Office Email Alias (for any questions): diversity@wpi.edu   

LGBTQ+ Support at WPI  

  • Legal Name or Gender Change and Preferred Name: Information regarding this process can be found here.  

The Alliance  

  • Gender-Inclusive Housing: For more information on housing options click here.  
  • Gender Inclusive Restrooms: There are numerous gender-inclusive restrooms available on campus. A full listing of the locations can be found on WPI’s Interactive Map.  

Title IX Office  

Student Development and Counseling Center  

  • Open Monday-Friday 8:00 am-5:00 pm  
  • Location: 16 Einhorn Road  
  • Phone: 508-831-554  
  • Email: sdcc@wpi.edu 


More information on Definitions and Terminology

Outside WPI Resources:

The Trevor Project