18 Unique & Useful Gifts For The Recent Graduate

18 Unique & Useful Gifts For The Recent Graduate

(Or at least gifts for your favorite college student)

Tis graduation season, and with graduation season comes graduation parties. While not always expected, recent graduates are often given gifts to help them as they embark on their journey as college students. Whether you know only one or several graduates, it can be hard to think of unique gifts that will be useful and appreciated by the new college students.

As a rising college junior and having been to many high school graduate parties, I have compiled a list of gifts that I have loved receiving or wished I received at my graduation party. May these inspire you!

1. A hammock

Whether or inflatable, a hammock is the best for setting up shop and staying cozy anywhere. These are awesome for your adventurers or those who like to take naps in the sun (like me!).

Hanging hammocks like these from ENO are super cute and bright! A single nest hammock is $59.95 and a double nester is $69.95!

You can get inflatable hammocks like this Ecotek hammock from Amazon for $38.95!

2. A foldable chair

These are perfect for those living with limited space because they can set up the chair when they want to use it and stow it away to free up space when it’s not in use. I found it worked well whenever I had friends over or even when I wanted to go hang out at my friends’ room down the hall!

This chair can be found at Walmart for only $18!

3. A toolkit or multitool

A tool-kit or multitool is a must-have for college students or D.I.Y.ers to make sure they can be independent and fix or put together anything that they need to.

This standard toolset has 18 different basic and essential tools. Found at Lowe's for $24.98, this toolset can be found in both yellow and pink!

4. Pepper spray

Although I have never had to use it, having pepper spray with me gives me (and my parents back home) peace of mind as I walk around campus.

5. Lanyard & ID case

Most college students will have to carry around their ID and housing key, so consider getting them a lanyard and or a keychain wallet that they can keep their ID and key on to ensure it doesn’t get lost. You can even add a pepper spray keychain on it!

This cute zip ID case from Vera Bradley for $14 is perfect for keeping your ID accessible while also protected.

6. Travel goodies

If your college student is going to school far away, chances are they will have to do a fair amount of traveling back and forth between school and home. Although they may have a suitcase, they may appreciate some other travel goodies like a neck pillow, luggage packing cubes, makeup case or a toiletry bag that will last for years of travel.

7. A travel mug

Whether they like tea or coffee, a good insulated travel mug that is leak-proof or at least sealable is crucial for enjoying your favorite hot beverage. These mugs keep liquids hot for longer and help protect against leaks and spills so you can grab your drink and go!

8. A cookbook

What college student doesn’t love to eat? While I may love to eat, I find it so much more rewarding to be able to eat food that I have worked hard to prepare myself. Many students heading to college may already know how to cook, but a cookbook or recipe cards with directions for how to make some of their favorite foods can help them to create a taste of home while away at school. Personally, I find it so meaningful when someone gives me a handwritten recipe like for their grandma’s apple pie.

9. A soup mug

From warming up soup to your favorite beverage, mugs like these with ventable lids are key for cooking in a dorm microwave. These mugs can even be used to make a tiny cake!

These bright and fun mugs can be found at Bed, Bath, & Beyond for just $5.99!

10. A book or two to help continue learning

Even if your grad is not a bookworm, many college students will struggle sometimes to transition into adulthood and may appreciate a book filled with advice or one that will help to take the edge off. An inscribed note in the cover conveying why this book made you think of them and wishing them the best is really meaningful and something that they will treasure.

This funny cartoon is from Sarah Anderson's Adulthood Is A Myth available

11. Spotify gift card

If your college student uses Spotify, a gift card is a wonderful gift that can potentially give them months of downloading and listening to music. Another great reason to use Spotify premium is that with your college discount you also have access to Hulu so that your Spotify premium account doubles as a Hulu account! What a steal at $5 per month!

12. Gas cards

Gas is expensive, so your college student will appreciate that they no longer need to budget for gas. Whether your college student has a car or not, a gas card is great because they can also use it to help pay back their friends or family who may drive them to the store or back and forth from home.

13. A power bank

A compact power bank is essential for students that are on-the-go every day. The multiple USB ports allow you to charge multiple devices at once, so you should never have a dead phone!

I love my KMASHI power bank that Amazon carries for $11.99!

14. Art & picture frames

To help college students to decorate their space and bring a bit of home with them, consider giving them some unique art or picture frames. If you are creative, consider making your own art like a painted canvas or filling the frames with photos of you and your college student. If your college student is going far from home, consider giving them art or frames that are about their hometown or home state so they show off where they are from!

Here is a canvas that I made for a friend's dorm!

12. Hobby supplies

If your college student has a hobby, they may appreciate receiving or getting the funds to buy new supplies. It may not only allow them to advance their craft but also serve as a great stress reliever during the semester. You could buy them canvases, paints, pencils, paper etc. Who knows, you may even get a little gift later on!

16. Professional clothes

Whether or not it’s on their radar yet, many college students will at some point be in need of some business casual and professional clothes to wear for job interviews, job shadowing or observations and actually working at a job or internship. Consider getting them some closet staples or giving them gift cards to retailers that they can use to find professional clothes that are their style.

17. Stationery

Your college student may be in need of some nice stationery, especially as they start interviewing or working and need to write thank-you notes. Plus they can use it to write thank-you notes for all of the great gifts they’ve received!

18. Any gift that comes from the heart!

While it may sound cliche, honestly the best gifts are those that show you care. You can make a gift meaningful by making it based off an inside joke or a memory you have of the graduate. Anything that will make your college student feel loved and valued is a worthy gift!

Cover Image Credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/accomplishment-ceremony-education-graduation-267885/

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Let's Talk More About Lori Laughlin Facing Up To 20 Years In Prison When Brock Turner Got 6 Months

And he was released three months early for 'good behavior'... after sexually assaulting an unconscious girl behind a dumpster.


To start, Lori Laughlin messed up royally, and I don't condone her actions.

If you live under a rock and are unaware of what happened to the "Full House" star, here's the tea:

Lori Laughlin and husband Mossimo Giannulli — and like 50 other celebrity parents — were found guilty of conspiracy to commit fraud, and paid a $1 million bail on conspiracy to commit mail fraud, and honest services fraud. You don't need to know what these mean except that she paid $500,000 to get her two daughters, Bella and Olivia Jade Giannulli.

I know you're wondering why they did it — tbh I am too — however, these parents paid the University of Southern California to give admission to her daughters in through the rowing team on campus, despite neither one of them actually playing the sport ever in their life.

Yeah, Aunt Becky messed up and should face punishment, but why is she facing up 20 years when men like Brock Turner are sentenced only six months for raping an unconscious woman behind a dumpster at Stanford?

I hate to bring up the gender card, but I'm pulling it: Why is Lori Laughlin — a woman who with bad judgement who used money to give an upper-hand to her entitled daughters — face more prison time than a man who willingly raped a woman who wasn't in a right state of mine (or any at all!) behind a dumpster of all places.

The answer? Because the system is a mess.

Yeah, Aunt Becky paid for her daughters to get into a school, giving disadvantages to students actually deserving and wanting to attend a college. Her act was immoral, and ultimately selfish, but it doesn't even compare to what Brock Turner did, and it doesn't even effect others as much his rape survivor.

The most that will happen to the Giannulli girls is an expulsion and a temporary poor reputation, however, Emily Doe (the alias of the survivor) will feel the consequences of the attack forever.

There should have been a switch:

Lori Laughlin and the Target guy should have had to pay other students tuition/student debt while facing prison time, while Brock Turner should have had to face over 20 years with more consequences.

But, that'll never happen because our system sucks and society is rigged. I guess our society would prefer a rapist walking around more so a woman who made a poor choice by paying for her daughters to go to a college.

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Being A #GirlBoss Isn't Easy

I enjoy the satisfaction that comes after finishing a project with which I struggled.


I never anticipated college would be as busy as it is. I always thought that I would have plenty of free time in college to party it up and truly enjoy myself. While that time does exist, the majority of my time is spent either in class, doing homework, working (at either of my two jobs), or working on my Weedtube account. I'm one busy #GirlBoss, that's for sure.

I don't find that I have much free time in college, so I try to budget my time wisely. Making sure there is enough time in the day for me to complete everything I need to while having some downtime is difficult! But, it is vital.

Being a college student means managing tons of deadlines all at once, which can be really overwhelming so being well-prepared is key. For me, this means ALWAYS having my planner on me. I write down everything from upcoming assignments to hangouts with my friends to make sure I don't miss anything. I've been making an effort to procrastinate less this term in hopes that the quality of my work improves, as well, in which my planner has been really helpful.

While I kind of wish I had more free time, I do enjoy being busy. I enjoy the satisfaction that comes after finishing a project with which I struggled. I enjoy going from one activity right into the next one and I feel like I'm always juggling a ton of things at once. This term, I'm working at the downtown Theater, while working as the Editor-In-Chief for my Odyssey community and writing articles myself. I'm still going to school full-time and I'm trying to upload weekly videos. I've been busier in past terms, but there truly is something so satisfying about the grind. I can't wait to graduate next year and begin the next step of my life, so until then, I'll continue getting that bread.

let us get that bread

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