University of Notre Dame
University of Notre Dame


Top 3 Names in the Class of 2021

Everyone knows Notre Dame is a Catholic insitution, and the most common names certainly live up to this legacy. We all know a Katie, a Pat, or an Annie, but what really are the most common names at ND?

3. Mary (19) and Michael (30)

In third place we find Mary for girls and Michael for boys. Both of these are great Roman Catholic names, with Mary the mother of God and St. Michael the Archangel. If you’re wondering why Mary was not higher on this list, if you factor in the 11 Marias also in the class of 2021 you would find Mary/Maria tied with first place. Many do not realize the plethora of Marys around campus as they are often disguised as “Molly,” or part of a compound name such as “Mary Kate,” “Mary Ellen,” etc.

2. Matthew (40) and Elizabeth (23)

Securing second place are the names Matthew and Elizabeth. There are 23 first-year Elizabeths, and a whopping 39 Matthews, and well as one Mathew! Again, with St. Matthew and St. Elizabeth as prominent figures in the Catholic faith, even our students’ names embody the school’s Catholic identity.

1. John (40) and Katherine/Kathryn (30)

And the winners for most common Notre Dame names for the class of 2021 are John and Katherine/Kathryn! You may be thinking, 40 Johns means John is tied with Matthew. However, we know many of these Johns go by “Jack”, and there are 15 more Jacks in the freshmen class, bringing the John/Jack combo up to 55. With John the Baptist and John the Evangelist in the New Testament, it makes sense that the name would be strongly represented in our first-year class. Katherine is actually the only name on the leaderboard that is not directly plucked from the Bible. Never fear, St. Catherine of Alexandria was one of the church’s early martyrs and a very deserving namesake.

Honorable Mentions: For girls we have Caroline (17), Emily (17), and 14 Emmas, Graces, Sarahs, and Abigails (Abby, etc.). For boys there are Patrick and Thomas at 28 each, Ryan (27), Joseph (26), Andrew (24), and Daniel (22).

Although we have mentioned the most popular names for students, there are 314 unique/unrepeated girl names and 227 for boys. There are also several sets of two. For example, there are only two Maxes and Jills in the class of 2021, so go out and find your name doppelgänger!