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The Best Gifts for College Graduates

Three girls in graduation gowns, caps, and holding their diplomas

Graduation is a massive milestone for students and parents alike. And such a special occasion calls for a nice gift. But coming up with a good graduation gift idea can be easier said than done. The best graduation gifts are meaningful, useful, and thoughtful. Need some help coming up with a unique gift? At Collegeboxes, we’re here to help you come up with some ideas!

How Much Should I Give for a Graduation Gift?

At the end of the day, graduation gifts are nice, but totally optional. Don’t feel pressured to spend a bunch of money. What’s important is that you’re taking the time to celebrate your graduate! When you put a lot of thought and care into your gift, they are sure to appreciate it. 

But if you have some extra money and are looking for the perfect gift, here are 12 ideas that are always sure to impress!

Meaningful Gifts

Graduating from college is a huge transitional period in a student’s life. In times like this, it’s important to reflect on how far they’ve come. That means you can prioritize gifts that celebrate their accomplishments, frame some fond memories, or get personalized graduation gifts that are made specially for them!

ASU diploma, cap, and tassels

Framed Diploma and Tassel

A diploma is an important piece of paper, so you’ll want to protect it. You can get a diploma framed for a reasonable price. You can either get a nice frame online, or even pay a professional to frame it for you. If you want some extra dazzle, consider getting their tassel framed with it! It will be the perfect display piece for your college student’s future office!

Alma Mater Gear

Many people look back on their college years fondly, so it’s always a safe bet to buy something centered around a graduate’s alma mater. Cute sweaters, comfy sweatpants, or even just a fun keychain can be a sweet memento to remember their time at school.

5 boys in college shirts
Messenger bag with initials embroidered on

Personalized Graduation Gifts

No one knows your student better than you do, so try and think of some gifts that you know they’ll love. Then, you can take it to the next level by making it personalized! Add some unique flair to any gift by having your student’s initials embroidered onto it. This can elevate any gift, from blankets, to planners, or even bags and luggage! 

College Graduate Necessities


Look, it’s not a personal gift, but it sure is a useful gift. Money is a great gift because it gives the recipient the freedom to spend it however they wish. Even $50 can be a total lifesaver to recent college graduates, and anything more is sure to impress. When in doubt, pull out that wallet! 

Woman's hands holding multiple hundred dollar bills
A man and woman preparing dinner on a counter

Meal Kits

It can be difficult to find time to cook a meal, but eating out can really take a toll on a person’s wallet. This is where a deliverable meal kit comes in.  

Instead of going to the store, planning your meals, and going through all the prep work, meal delivery kits will send out portioned meals that only require 15-30 minutes to whip up.

Kitchen Necessities

In college, you can survive with a few forks and a dream; but adulthood is another story! Save your student the stress by getting them some dishes and cookware of their own.   

It doesn’t need to be anything too fancy. You can get shatterproof dishware for an affordable price, as well as nonstick pots and pans.

Pots and pans sitting on a stove
Three collared shirts on a rack

Workplace Essentials

Now that your student is graduating from college, they’re going to need clothes for the workplace. You don’t need to fill their entire closet, but a few essential pieces can help them build a unique and professional wardrobe.  

Try to steer away from powerful patterns and prioritize some elevated basics.

A Toolbox

Hey, we all know that adulthood isn’t very glamorous! That’s why it’s important to make sure your graduate is prepared for any unexpected hiccups or repairs. Toolkits (and even first aid kits) are one of those things that you didn’t know you need until you need it. So, while this isn’t a fun gift, your graduate is sure to thank you once they need to crack it open for the first time.

Hand placing a tool back in a toolbox

Luxury Gifts

A camera, notebook, bag, and book ontop a map

A Trip

Why buy a physical item when you can help fund a whole trip? Investing in a trip is a great way to give your graduate a cherished memory that they’ll hold onto for life. While international trips can be super pricey once you factor in all the costs, even traveling a few states away can be an unforgettable experience.

Watches or Jewelry

Nothing says maturity and class quite like some bling! If your student is the type that enjoys the finer things in life, consider splurging on a nice watch or jewelry. The great thing about luxury purchases like this is that the value of the item can increase over time, making it a treasured gift and solid investment at the same time.

Hand holding a wrist watch
An apple computer, laptop, and other tech on a desk

Upgrading Their Technology

Does your student live on their phone? Or maybe their laptop holds years of assignments, pictures, and other memories. No matter what piece of tech they prefer, graduating college is a great excuse to get them a much-needed upgrade!

Gaming Consoles

Many parents roll their eyes at video games, but it’s a great way for people to decompress after a stressful day. And every few years, companies will come out with brand new consoles and games, which is always a huge event. If you are celebrating a video game lover, you’ll be their favorite person in the world if you get them the hottest new gaming console as a gift.

Hand holding an X-Box controller

Moving on from college is a big deal! But have you thought about how you’re going to literally move from college? Well, Collegeboxes is here to help! We can safely store your belongings while you move, and even deliver them to any address in the world. So, no matter where your journey is taking you next, Collegeboxes can help you get there.

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