Ease your student supervision speed bumps.

What is in a name?

Your name.  The identification source of introductions, signatures and mailing envelopes.  While you legally can change both your first and last name, most people keep their given first name.  Despite nature vs nurture arguments, in nearly all occasions  your family will dictate both your first and last name.
Many parents find much excitement in picking out baby names.  Names can territorial, either keeping the baby’s name a secret so others do not use it or quickly claiming it publicly so again it is not used by other friends or family.
Numerous websites can be explored, assessing name popularity, origins and true meanings.  One must also keep in mind how that name goes with the middle and last name.  In addition, (sadly) what hurtful nicknames might come with certain names.
Interested in learning more about your name, check out:
Baby Names: https://www.babynamewizard.com/
Urban Dictionary: https://www.urbandictionary.com/names.php
Numerology: https://www.paulsadowski.com/Numbers.asp
My name, Josie is both Hebrew and French, and means ‘God will add.’  While it comes from Josephine, my legal name is just Josie.
My parents needed to negotiate a bit in settling on my name.  My mom loved the name Rosie, but my dad had reservations.  With a close friend named Josie, it was a good compromise.  At the time, it was a very uncommon and still remains in the ‘unique’ category.  To this day, I get a little caught off guard when I meet another ‘Josie’ but also immediately feel connected to them.  Like we are in a cool Josie-only club.
As a child, my name was extremely frustrating.  At souvenir shops I have never been able to find my name on a magnet, t-shirt or mug.  It is funny as kids what can frustrate us.  One time my mom went so far as negotiating with a t-shirt shop to make me a special shirt, and finally I had it.  After that point I loved my name.
While parents do their best to ensure they do not select a name that would bring a child harm, sometimes music, movies and pop culture do otherwise.  I feel for those individuals whose full names are the same with other celebrities or figures.  For me, there were a number of sayings/characters that people joke with me about.  Luckily all of these are more fun than hurtful.  I am sure you could come up with your own list too.
#1  Archie Comics and 2000 movie, Josie and Pussy Cats
#2: The movie, The Outlaw Josey Wales 
#3 Joe C., the late Kid Rock sidekick 

#4: The most recent, “Josie Grossie” from the movie Never Been Kissed

Even with these layers to my name, I claim it.  My name has become more than identification.  Almost like my brand.  What it means to me be.
At my going away party at LMU my boss gave me a hard time, as the fist couple weeks of work I was correcting everyone on how to pronounce my name.  I pronounce it Jo-C not Jo-Z.  Maybe that came across bossy and of course he was just having fun, but it was another reminder that my name means a lot to me.
Research and books have documented how important a person’s name is to them.  Most notably, How to Win Friends and Influence People author Dale Carnegie wrote:

Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.

Do you know what your name means?  The story of how you were named?  Do you embrace it or take it as is?

About Josie

I’m Dr. Josie Ahlquist—a digital engagement and leadership consultant, researcher, educator, and author. I’m passionate about helping people and organizations find purposeful ways to connect, engage, and tell their unique story. I provide consulting, executive coaching, and training for campuses, companies, and organizations that want to learn how to humanize technology tools and build effective and authentic online communities.

My blog and podcast have been recognized by EdTech Magazine, Inside Higher Ed and the Chronicle of Higher Education. My book, Digital Leadership in Higher Education, was published in 2020 and was listed as a #1 new release for college and university student life. I have been growing my consultancy since 2013 and am based in Los Angeles. When I’m not helping clients lead online, you might find me training for a triathlon, spoiling my nieces and nephews, or exploring with my husband and our rescue dogs in our new RV called Lady Hawk.

I’d love to connect! Find me on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

Share this post!

You may also like...


From Book Proposal to Publication: Starting Where You Are

There are two primary questions that I’ve received since publishing my first book in 2020, Digital Leadership in Higher Education: Purpose-Driven Social Media in a Connected World.  When is the next book? How did you do it? At first, the answers to both these questions were pretty fuzzy. I’m finally writing an answer to the second …

Read More »
You are essential blog header - photo of Josie

You are Essential

You are Essential. I’ve been thinking a lot about energy since I returned from a month-long RV trip that my husband and I coined #AhlQuest.  Away from my computer, far from Los Angeles, each day was a blank page instead of an always full to-do list.  I’m writing to you, attempting not to sound too “woo-woo” or …

Read More »

Technology is Personal

Think about your own personal technology timeline. Think back as early as you can to your very first experience with technology. Mine happened when I was two, so I start my story there and fast-forward to the tools I now use every day.

Read More »

Subscribe to my newsletter

For the latest on digital engagement and leadership and everywhere they intersect.

Rebekah Tilley

Assistant Vice President, University of Iowa Center for Advancement

Rebekah Tilley is the assistant vice president of communication and marketing for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement (UICA). In that role she supports fundraising and alumni engagement efforts for the university, including its CASE Gold winning Iowa Magazine, and serves UICA in a variety of strategic communication efforts.

Previously she was the director of strategic communication for the University of Iowa Tippie College of Business, and the director of communication for the University of Kentucky College of Law. She is a Kentucky native and a proud alum of the University of Kentucky.

Connect with Rebekah

Spark your mission on social media

Sign up for the Digital Leadership Download

The newsletter that brings the latest in digital engagement and leadership right to your inbox

Unsubscribe anytime. Read our Privacy Policy.

Sign up for the Digital Leadership Download

The newsletter that brings the latest in digital engagement and leadership right to your inbox

Unsubscribe anytime. Read our Privacy Policy.