Popular names are often not gender specific


Alex, Morgan, Quinn, Taylor – all of these names could belong to either a male or a female.

Many K-Staters know a girl with the same name as a guy they know, or vice versa. Gender neutral names are becoming more and more common, according to AssociatedContent.com.

For example, Taylor Winn, sophomore in kinesiology, and Taylor Boles, freshman in animal sciences and industry and pre-veterinary medicine, both said they have encountered confusion based on their names. Taylor is the 24th most popular name in the United States for girls and the 224th most popular name for boys, according to YeahBaby.com.

Boles said her parents named her Taylor because they thought it would be an original name. However, it was not. She said there were six children named Taylor in her kindergarten class.

Despite this, Boles said she still likes her name. As far as it being gender neutral, she said the only time it has affected her life was here at K-State.

Boles said she decided to participate in Wildcat Warm-up after her freshman orientation. The program allows incoming freshmen to familiarize themselves with campus, residence halls and dining centers. Students have to fill out an application before they can attend the event, and Boles said her gender somehow was switched on the form. Consequently, she was assigned a room in Haymaker — the male dorm for the weekend.

“Although I would have not minded [staying in Haymaker], they made me switch to Ford,” Boles said

Over the years, Winn said he has been involved in numerous mix-ups as well. When teachers perform roll call, Winn said they often look for a girl to respond to “Taylor Winn” and sometimes have a difficult time accepting his name. However, Winn said he has gotten used to this and thinks his name is a little “weird,” too.

“I have never met a man over the age of 30 with this name,” he said. “I think it started being popular for guys in this generation. Until this year, I never met anyone with my name. A guy on my floor is named Taylor — the only other guy I know [with this name] — and he deals with the same thing.”

Winn also said he once dated a girl named Jordan, and even she did not have to deal with as many confusing mix-ups as he does. And unlike Boles, who said she does not deal with name confusion often, Winn jokingly said he wishes he had a different name.

“But really, something just average and general in this day and age for a guy,” Winn said.