Gift-giving has become easier and more convenient thanks to the modern college student’s fondness for items of trendy weirdness. Walking into stores like Urban Outfitters, you are barraged with a cornucopia of fun gift ideas: “vintage” vinyl records, pastel colored polaroid cameras, or a cookbook with 100 creative ways to use Nutella. There’s also the dependable option of creatively wrapped gift cards (because if it’s wrapped in a unique way, people will forget that a gift card says: “you can go buy your own gift”). While gifts like these are convenient and fun, there are other things that college students will find much more useful in the long-run.
1. Vacuums are an under-appreciated necessity that students won’t appreciate until they try to clean their dorm room with the limited suction of the vacuum they got for $30.00 on Ebay. The investment of a quality vacuum cleaner will be a gift that college students will benefit from for years.
•Shark® Rocket® Complete with DuoClean™ and TruePet™: $299.70
2. There are three basic baking pans that are always taken for granted at home: the muffin pan, the cookie sheet, and the square cake pan. These three pans can be used for multiple forms of food preparation that can help college kids eat healthier and battle the Freshman Fifteen. These pans can also be found on a wide variety of price ranges.
•Trudeau Silicone 12-Well Muffin Pan from William Sonoma: $27.95
•Goldtouch® Nonstick Quarter Sheet, Set of 2 from William Sonoma: $36.95
•Calphalon Gourmet Square Cake Pan from William Sonoma: $18.95
3. Depending on friends' generosity to iron your clothes before an interview is a fate that college students should avoid at all costs. Even a travel-sized iron and ironing board will be invaluable when college students begin to enter the workforce.
•Honey-Can-Do® Tabletop Ironing Board from Bed Bath and Beyond: $9.99
•Sunbeam® Steam Master® Iron from Bed Bath and Beyond: $19.99
4. From endless group projects in classes, to quick-fixes around a dorm room, a hot glue gun is an invaluable tool for college students.
•Elmer's® CraftBond® Enhanced Safety High Temp Glue Gun from Michael’s: $14.99
5. The relationship between college students and coffee may be overplayed in pop culture, but it is pretty accurate. Rather than having to make the trek to the dining hall, a coffee maker in the dorm room can make college students' mornings much smoother. Keurig® makes single-serve coffee makers that are both convenient and economically designed for dorm rooms.
•Keurig® K15 Coffee Maker: $99.99
•The Original Donut Shop Keurig Single-Serve K-Cup Pods, Regular Medium Roast Coffee, 72 Count on Amazon: $33.83
6. The days of Tupperware ladies going door-to-door are long gone, but quality Tupperware is still a necessity, especially for college students who have a hazy understanding of what “microwave-safe” means.
•Tupperware® Impressions Classic Bowl Set: $42.00
7. High-quality rain boots can be a student’s greatest defense on campus. Depending on the size of college campus, students often walk to their classes from their dormitories, and can easily get stranded during a sudden downpour. No one is happy in wet socks, and rain boots are the perfect defense against a ruined day.
•Hunter® Women's Original Tall Gloss Rain Boots: $104.95
8. String lights in dorm rooms are both extremely trendy and extremely useful. For the sake of cost efficiency, most dorm rooms are lit with fluorescent bulbs. Unfortunately, fluorescent lighting is extremely harsh, and can cause eye strain and headaches. The softer light of string lights is a much more comfortable and attractive lighting alternative for college dorm rooms.
•10-Foot 60-Count LED String Lights in Warm White/Copper from Bed Bath and Beyond: $14.99