One part of their story is ending, but the other is just getting started. Help launch your graduate off to a good start with a gift they’ll truly appreciate in the long run.
Every student is going to be different. Some are going off to college, others are going straight into the work force. Others... Well, others are just trying to make it until graduation day. You know your graduate. You know what they like and what they don’t like. You know if they are ready for this new adventure in life, or if they are unsure of how to handle it all.
Each level of graduate is unique. Is your graduate leaving high school, college or grad school? Maybe they decided to go the trade school route. Their passion is their passion, and the choice they make is theirs. It’s important to support them and their choice. What better way to support them than with a gift to kick off their journey?
High School Graduate
Nothing ever happens after high school. At least that is the mentality of many. Because of this mentality, many people peak in their high school years. A breakup or high school clicks surround the world of a high schooler. Often, the pressure is overwhelming.
With high school graduation approaching, it is important to remind your graduate that there is so much life after graduation. All the drama, the fake friendships and insignificant clicks will go away, and life truly begins.
Money is always the preferred option... understandably so. The graduate is leaving high school in hopes of bigger and better things with little to no budget to work with. Gifting some cash to the graduate will help go toward moving expenses, dorm attire and all the costly tasks in between. Whether it is a gift card to Amazon or a written check, cash is always a winner in a graduate’s world.
Helping with a financial gift gives your graduate a step forward toward their future. Any support they can get will be one less loan they will have to pay back after school. If you choose to help your graduate financially after graduation, make sure to incorporate something sentimental to. Write a message of love and support in a card or incorporate a personalized message or photo into something they can carry with them in life. A blanket, a goal cork board or a photo album with memories will help remind your graduate they are loved. Show them they have support behind them along the way in this new journey.
The College Graduate
Once you graduate, you are going off the college. Point. Blank. Some students don't have the option on whether they are going to college. Regardless if your graduate chose to go to college or was pushed into it, graduating college is a huge milestone in their life.
Consider a milestone gift. Encourage their dreams. There are several more personal gifts than cash for a college graduation. Although they would appreciate some cash, here’s to college debt! If you are opposed to giving cash, a nice set of luggage is a great gift for a college graduate especially if they are graduating in the spring. Encourage them to take some time this summer to travel before settling roots. This time in their life is something money can’t buy back.
Give them a destination. A cruise ticket or a reservation to a hotel on the beach is one way to take away the excuses. If the destination is payed for, there is no excuse. Whether it Is for a weekend or just a night, the college graduate will truly appreciate the time away before jumping into to their new journey of adulting!
If you are thinking more practical, consider giving them a gift that will set them on a smooth path forward. Equip the new graduate with some essentials they’ll need post-graduation. A new laptop, a professional watch or a contribution toward a professional wardrobe will help kickstart your graduate’s professional career. Help your graduate make it through those job interviews with the tools they’ll need. Being able to walk in to an interview with confidence and the wardrobe to match is the ideal gift to give a college graduate. It is something they will be so grateful for in the wrong run.
The Trade School Graduate
For the student who chose the trade school route, consider what is going to be the most useful gift after graduation. They have their degree. Now, they are heading into the work force. For the cosmetologist, consider contributing to the hair tools they need to kickstart their career. It will not only show them you are investing in their dreams; it will show them that you are there every step of the way.
The nursing student who is eager and ready to help lives is in desperate need of scrubs and shoes. Talk with them about their preferences and the sizes they’ll need. Help them get started off right. It is hard to prepare yourself when you haven’t even started working yet. If they are working with kids, consider getting the nursing graduate some fun cartoon scrubs. The more creative the better. It is a practical gift, but personalizing it to the graduate makes it special.
If you aren’t sure what to get the electrician, dental hygienist or the welder graduate, don’t be reluctant to come out and ask them what they need. They will be more appreciative than you expect. It shows them that you are interested in what they do and want to help start their journey off right. They might need tools or clothes to get them going in the right direction.
The Unsure Graduate
There are plenty of young people who aren’t ready to move on to their next phase in life. Who are we kidding? Most people are afraid of change. These young graduates aren’t sure what they want to do, where to go or where life is going to take them. For the graduate walking across the stage with little to no idea where they want to go in life, their gift can be as personal or as practical as you want it to be.
A nice watch is both practical and personal. Nice watches can be a vital accessory to wear in a job interview and are a professional tool they’ll carry on them day-to-day. It really ties a professional look together. If you like the idea of getting your graduate a nice watch but are still wanting to incorporate a personal touch, consider getting it engraved.
Engraving the inside section of the watch doesn’t take away from the overall look. No one will see it but the recipient or whomever (s)he shows it off to. It does incorporate a whole lot of meaning. A sweet message or the name of a loved one engraved on the interior will mean the world to the graduate. It is a reminder that no matter what happens or how busy life gets, you are there for them- any time of the day, every step of the way.
Books are always a great graduation gift option. Motivate the graduate with something inspirational or cater to their preference with a book from their favorite author’s collection of new releases. Add to their personal library and encourage them to expand how they view the world. It will help better prep them for school, life and the future ahead.
A gym membership is one practical gift for an unsure graduate. Spending some time at the gym will help the graduate learn how to detach from their new-found stress and reconnect with themselves. A healthy lifestyle along with an open mindset should be a part of every person’s daily goals, especially a young graduate planning for their future. Exercise is a healthy way of realizing what is negative in one’s life. Encourage the unsure graduate to take in this new-found lifestyle change and embrace all the positives it will bring to their life.
There is a lot of drama that goes on in high school. Encourage a young graduate to take some time to get away from it all after graduation. Consider funding a little getaway. Surprise them with a plane ticket for a weekend getaway or invest in a three-day cruise. This gift will give an unsure graduate a week or a long weekend to truly dive deep into where they see their future going. Consider splurging a little extra for the unsure graduate. Memories are priceless, and time is one thing that can’t be returned or exchanged.
Every graduate is different, but how you invest in them will be a contributing factor in where they choose to go in life.
Gifts for Any Graduate
Practicality. Practicality is key. If buying a practical gift for your graduate is the goal, consider a few factors. Can they use it long term? Is it something they can get use out of daily?
A coffee maker is a smart option. Get the graduate a nice, condensed coffee maker for their journey off to college or for those early mornings on the job. When the morning is lagging or the late nights are more normal than not, the graduate will be ever so thankful for this gift as it gets them through the day.
Crock pots are another very practical graduation gift. They are a lifesaver for the college student living in a dorm with little to no space to cook or time to prepare. It is also perfect for the graduate leaving college and joining the work force. Days get busy and eating takeout gets both old and expensive. Crock pots are great for those long days. After work, they’ll walk through the door with dinner prepared- a true gift.
Crock pots are a gift that keeps on giving. For the graduate with kids or the one expecting one soon, a crock pot becomes a lifesaving tool... or at least a dinner saving one. Both coffee makers and crock pots are some of the most practical graduation gifts because they will be used long term and daily. You can’t do much better than that.
In this day in age, you get everything you need, all-in-one in a smart phone. The smart phone phenomenon has caused the sale of cameras to decrease- drastically. Consider gifting a graduate with a new camera after graduation. Push your graduate to pursue new things and capture the moments along the way. Time can’t be returned, and those captured memories are priceless.
Let’s talk gifts. Let’s talk graduates. It is important to celebrate milestones in life. Graduation is not the end. It is the kickstart to a new beginning in life. The only way to get something you never had is to be willing to do things you have never done. After graduation, be there for the graduate. Remind them to search for something they love, and make a living doing it. Offer your experience to guide an eager soul.
Life after school can feel like the most daunting leap of faith. There is no longer the safety net known as school. Not sure where life is going? That’s fine. You are in school. When school is over, and the diploma is in your hand, reality hits. Adulting hits. You have a choice to make. There’s a new level of hope... hoping you made the right choice in life. The new graduate does not want to start over.
Encourage the graduate in your life. Encourage that no matter what happens you will be there to support them. Sure, life can be scary, but without that first leap, there is no way to fly. Encourage your graduate to soar to new levels. Remind them of all they have accomplished and show them the possibilities for a bright future ahead.
They are going to be seeking guidance. Remind them to listen to others who have been there before them. Learn from other people’s mistakes, so you don’t repeat them. Same goes for their successes. Ask them how they got there and the steps towards pursuing the right path.
If you are still unsure what to get your graduate this summer, let our florists at Wild Strawberry & More in East Lansing, MI, help you make your graduate feel loved with a reminder of why life is beautiful. A beautiful flower arrangement or a fresh plant Is a representation of life. They can be sent as a graduation gift or as a reminder throughout the year to keep pushing toward bigger and better things. Remember, your graduate is going to need all the support they can get. Be there for them when they need it most.