8 gift ideas for high school graduates

Originally printed in the pages of Simply Family Magazine’s May 2017 issue. Never miss an issue, check out SFM’s digital editions, here

article by Pam Molnar

The sounds of Pomp & Circumstance fill the air as we approach graduation season. When your graduate closes the door to childhood, you want to give him a gift that reflects that milestone. Stuck for ideas? No matter what your budget, you are sure to find a great gift for your graduate here:

Spirit wear – Help your recent grad blend in at their new school by getting them some college spirit wear. Contact the school directly or go online to: PrepSportsWear.com. You will find an amazing database of colleges in the U.S and Canada.

Luggage – Maybe your grad is taking a year off and plans to travel. Whether they are traveling first class or backpacking across the country, they will need something to hold their things. For daily use, consider purchasing a book bag for walking around campus or a duffle bag for the gym.

Toolkit – If your grad is planning to move out of Mom and Dad’s house they won’t have access to Dad’s toolbox. A basic toolkit includes screwdrivers, pliers, a hammer, measuring tape, and other handy tools. You can find a ready-made toolkit at your local hardware store.

Gift cards – Gift cards are a one-size-fits-all type of gift. New college students might appreciate a gas card or a gift card to Target, where they can pick up food, toiletries or household items. IKEA (if there’s one nearby the graduate’s school) sells inexpensive furniture for small spaces – perfect for a dorm setting.

A Basket of Goodies – Whether your grad is starting out in his first apartment or headed to the dorm, he will appreciate a basket full of essentials. Fill a laundry basket with snack foods, toiletries, a sewing kit, and a roll of quarters for the Laundromat.

Books – A classic graduation book is, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” by Dr. Seuss. It’s an inspirational graduation sendoff for all ages. For practical college advice, “The Secrets of College Success” by Lynn F. Jacobs is a great choice. To record their college experiences consider buying a 5-year journal.

Money - The most popular gift for grads is cash. The question is always, “How much should I spend?” Check out: Simchabucks.com for a cash gift calculator. Fill in your relationship to grad; state the event takes place, who the gift is from, and your household income to receive a dollar amount suggestion.

Homemade gift If you have the time to make it, a homemade gift is a heartfelt one. Make a pillow or quilt out of high school and sports t-shirts. Put together a scrapbook of high school memories and include theatre programs, sports medals, and football programs. Create a photomontage of pictures from Kindergarten to graduation and present it at their graduation party.

about the author...Pam Molnar is a freelance writer and mother of three. She takes pleasure in finding the perfect gift for the graduates in her life.