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Smartest Baby Names

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Do you think your baby has what it takes to be the next Steve Jobs or Sheryl Sandberg? Start them on their path of intellect by giving them one of these smart baby names!

Boys Names:

Dean

Origin: Old English; Meaning: valley, presiding official over cathedral, university or group
If you want your little boy to begin leading at a young age, try this delightfully academic name that could also be an homage to actor Dean Martin. Plus, it’s a lot catchier than “Headmaster.”

Oxford

Origin: English; Meaning: ford of the oxen
An esteemed center of learning and the second-oldest university in the world, Oxford University is a solid foundation for a baby who seems wise beyond his peach-fuzz head and frequent diaper changes. Perhaps young Oxford will go into medicine when he’s older, as this is also the name of a health insurance provider.

Cornell

Origin: Latin; Meaning: horn, horned
This name may derive from the Latin “cornu,” meaning “horned,” but today, most parents would associate it with the Ivy-league university in Ithaca, NY. Although it’s hard to say whether naming your son after it would give him a leg up on the 19 percent admission rate, at least there’s Dr. Cornel West to look up to.

Stanford

Origin: English; Meaning: stone ford
If you’re not sure what a “stone ford” was before, now you do: it’s a crossing over wet areas of land made out of crushed stones that allow continuous water to flow through. Most will link this name to prestigious Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA, and the railroad tycoon who founded it — both astute inspirations for a baby boy.

Regis

Origin: Latin; Meaning: kingly
Perhaps more recognizable for TV host Regis Philbin than the midsized Regis University in Colorado, this name is a short alternative to Reginald. With ties to TV, academia, and roots meaning “kingly,” it seems young Regis would thrive in a multitude of environments.

Duke

Origin: Latin; Meaning: leader
At least baby Duke will have tons of already-personalized clothing options from Duke University (think Blue Devils onesies)! This boy would have a ton of other great namesakes, such as Jazz musician Duke Ellington, Western star John Wayne (Duke was his nickname), and — somewhat more playfully — iconic cartoon dog Marmaduke.

Art

Origin: diminutive of Arthur; Meaning: stone, bear
Maybe young Art has a successful pottery, drawing, or design career in his future? This nickname for Arthur has a lot of famous friends: musician Art Garfunkel, Honeymooners actor Art Carney, and graphic novelist Art Spiegelman — great foundations for a creative soul, we think!

Trig

Origin: Norse; Meaning: true
If you don’t like the math-class implications of Trig, you could try the Norse spellings of Tryg or Trygg, which is purportedly where the Palin family got inspiration for naming their youngest son, Tripp.

Penn

Origin: Old English; Meaning: enclosure, hill
Pick your favorite Pennsylvania college as your son’s namesake: either U of Penn or Penn State, both longstanding centers of learning. If you think this is too rah-rah of a tribute to these schools, consider actor Penn Badgley and Las Vegas superstar Penn Jillette — they both pull it off.

Princeton

Origin: Latin; Meaning: prince
Go Tigers! This name is perfect for parents who hope their baby will act regally (well, as regal as one can act while bald and toothless) or grow up with as respectable a reputation as the New Jersey university that inspires this moniker.

Bard

Origin: Irish; Meaning: minstrel, singer-poet
A great choice for literary parents; this variant of the Gaelic name Baird could refer to that high-school English class standby William Shakespeare or the private liberal-arts university in New York’s Hudson River Valley.

Drake

Origin: Middle English; Meaning: dragon
A kid named Drake will probably grow up to be a great debater; like a true dragon, he’ll spit fire to burn his opponents’ arguments to pieces. Drake is also known for the Canadian rapper Drake, Elizabethan-era sea captain Sir Francis Drake, and the private university in Iowa of the same name.

Emerson

Origin: Old English; Meaning: Emery’s son
Little Emerson will most likely see his name in print during his school career — that is, American author Ralph Waldo Emerson’s. And if you’re anywhere near Boston, you’ll probably associate this moniker with the private school, Emerson College.

Parson

Origin: Old English; Meaning: clergyman
Most famous in pop culture for starring in the reality show where Tim Gunn continually tells budding fashion designers to “Make it work,” New York City’s Parsons The New School for Design is a great choice for fashion-minded, artistic parents.

Trey

Origin: Middle English; Meaning: three
Ok, we had a little fun with this one. Hopefully young Trey will be spared the fate of dropping his, well, lunch tray in front of the whole cafeteria, but we think this nickname-free choice is so cool, he’ll have no problem shaking any typical embarrassments off. (This name’s an especially cool pick for your third child, considering its meaning.)

Girl Names:

Ivy

Origin: Old English; Meaning: climbing ivy plant, represents fidelity
If you think naming a baby after a school is a bit silly, Ivy is a pretty, less obvious nod to institutions of higher learning. Iva is a similarly sounding name to try out — and it’s so short and sweet, you won’t have to worry about fitting her name on her lunchbox or notebooks.

Berkeley

Origin: English; Meaning: birch clearing
This unisex name is a cute choice for parents who are expecting a girl and like the sound of surnames as first names. Also not too shabby to name your little one after one of California’s most respected universities.

Belle

Origin: English; Meaning: birch clearing
This unisex name is a cute choice for parents who are expecting a girl and like the sound of surnames as first names. Also not too shabby to name your little one after one of California’s most respected universities.

Ithica

Origin: English; Meaning: birch clearing
This unisex name is a cute choice for parents who are expecting a girl and like the sound of surnames as first names. Also not too shabby to name your little one after one of California’s most respected universities.

Alma

Origin: Hebrew, Latin; Meaning: maiden, nourishing
If your daughter is worried she’s not important, you can always remind her: Alma Mat(t)ers! (We had to.)

Magna

Origin: Latin, Scandinavian; Meaning: Large, strength (respectively)
A baby name with high honors! If you want your baby to go far in her education, name her after the popular degree distinction magna cum laude, Latin for “with highest honor” — just make sure you don’t compare her to her higher-ranking sister, Summa!

Bryn

Origin: Welsh; Meaning: hill
Will naming your daughter after this prestigious, all-women’s liberal arts college in Pennsylvania guarantee her admission? Probably not, but it may forecast strong friendships with the women around her.

Columbia

Origin: Latin; Meaning: dove
She’s an uptown girl! This Latin name has a sweet meaning of “dove” but could also be a nod to the Ivy League that’s located on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Hey, the school colors are a good excuse to go against the traditional girly décor schemes and do everything in baby blue.

Auburn

Origin: Latin; Meaning: persisting
This name has a number of possible connections to a brand-new baby: perhaps she has a tuft of auburn hair or has parents that love the Alabama university. Just make sure no one at your baby shower attended Auburn’s longtime football rival, University of Alabama.

Arcadia

Origin: Greek; Meaning: place name for mountainous region in Greece that symbolizes paradise
Arcadia is a beautiful name with geographical and academic roots, whether it reminds you of the Greek province or the private Pennsylvanian university.

Rowan

Origin: Gaelic, Norse; Meaning: Little red one, Rowan tree
A pretty name meaning “little red one,” Rowan could be a great name for a family of redheads — or alums of the small, public New Jersey university.

Madison

Origin: English; Meaning: Son of Maud, Matthew’s son
University of Wisconsin alumni may love this subtle nod to their alma mater (it’s the town where the college is located), but let’s hope baby Madison has a unique middle name; this name cracked the top 10 in popularity for the U.S. in 1997 and has stayed there ever since.

Trinity

Origin: Latin; Meaning: Threefold
If you’ve got family from Ireland or just hope your baby studies abroad there (and invites you to visit!), why not name her after Ireland’s oldest university, Trinity College?

Yael

Origin: Hebrew; Meaning: mountain goat, strength of God
A not-obvious homophone of the New Haven, Connecticut college, Yael originated in the Book of Judges in the Hebrew Bible. More currently, the name is associated with Israeli-French singer Yael Naim, who wrote the song to one of those impossibly catchy iPod commercials.

Siena

Origin: Latin; Meaning: from Siena, a reddish-brown color
Another great name for a family who values travel and learning equally: this name is linked to an Italian city in Tuscany and the private college located near Albany, New York. Similar names include Sienna or Sierra.

Article Posted 4 years Ago
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