Alphabetical Entries: N
names For individuals, use only last names on second reference in most cases. When it is necessary to distinguish between two people who use the same last name, generally use the first and last name on subsequent references. Always use the name a person prefers. Use middle initials in only the most formal situations or to avoid confusion. Nicknames should be contained within quotation marks: Julius “Dr. J.” Erving. A nickname should be used in place of a person’s name only when it is the way the individual prefers to be known: Jay-Z. A person who changed their name at marriage may opt to use their spouse’s name or their “birth name” or “former name” (these terms are preferable to “maiden name”). Always use the name a person prefers.
For campus departments and units, capitalize formal names and lowercase informal references (an exception to AP style): Department of History; My department is sponsoring the event. Also see the academic majors entry.
For college and university names, capitalize "college" and "university and other similar terms when part of a formal name, but lowercase otherwise: Radcliffe College, Stanford University, Massachusetts Maritime Academy, the university, the academy, the institute. Capitalize when using "the college" to refer to SUNY New Paltz: The swim team represented the College well vs. New Paltz is a great place to go to college. On first reference, spell out the proper name of an institution in full: Syracuse University, not just Syracuse; University of Massachusetts at Amherst, not Umass Amherst. See the State University of New York and State University of New York at New Paltz entries. Second and subsequent references to institutions may incorporate abbreviated forms.
nationalities and races Capitalize the proper names of nationalities, peoples, races, tribes, etc.: Arab, Arabic, African, American, Chinese, Jewish, Swede, etc. Do not hyphenate compound nationalities such as African American and Asian American even when used as an adjective: He is a Mexican American; she is a prominent African American author. Consult the race entry for guidelines on when racial identificaiton is pertinent.
Native American See the American Indian, Native American entry.
newspaper names See the BOOKS AND PERIODICALS heading under the composition titles entry.
non In general, no hyphen when used as a prefix (see AP Stylebook): nonprofit
noon See time entry.
numbers Follow guidelines under AP's numerals, roman numerals, arabic numerals, fractions, decimal units, percent and percentages entries.