12 Gift Ideas for Graduates

From practical to unique, here are some graduation gifts that are sure to put a smile on any student’s face.

It’s that time of year, as students throughout the country are graduating from high school and college and preparing for their next big challenge in life. But how do you commemorate this special milestone? Sure, cash and gift cards are always acceptable—but if you need help coming up with something else, check out our list below.

College grads

Photo via UncommonGoods

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Perhaps the graduate hasn’t had any luck with his or her post-graduation job search. “That’s OK,” they say. “I’m going to travel a little bit.” Sounds like they need a little cork globe to determine which foreign nation they will be “finding themselves” in, and track their travels with a thumbtack and some yarn. This one from UncommonGoods is fairly priced.

Photo via Flickr//Wikimedia
 (license here)

Subscriptions are a big part of life now, especially with the explosion of streaming services. The problem of course, is they can be expensive and slightly addictive. Treat your grad to a yearly subscription to Netflix, Amazon Prime, ESPN Insider or HBOGO—they provide endless entertainment (and plenty of procrastination opportunities).

The mobile charging case is the natural next step in the evolution from traditional wired wall charger to totally portable power. The best thing about the case is that it doesn’t take up valuable pocket-space like some other clumsier portable chargers. This is just a cool thing, and as a general rule, graduates love cool things. You can buy them at any Best Buy, Staples, Target, Walmart, or anywhere you pick up your normal technological needs.

Perfect for the grad heading to a big city. Look out for a MetroCard for the New York City Subway, a fare card for the L in Chicago, a Charlie Card for the MBTA in Boston, a SmarTrip card for the DC Metro, or even just a bus card for Wilmington.

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They might be graduating, but that does not mean they have to leave all their partying back on campus. Plus, flasks are great for a nice, classy engraving.

Everybody needs a little luxury, especially after four years of presumably hard work. What better way to unwind than a massage? And for the male graduates, maybe a nice beard trimmer or a fancy shave lotion to help them look their best for that big job interview.

The Art of Shaving
132 Christiana Mall, Newark

Massage Envy
5615 Concord Pike, Wilmington

An Ocean Retreat Day Spa
210 Savannah Road, Lewes

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You can’t go wrong with a pretty picture frame. There’s no doubt a recent graduate is going to desperately want to display a sentimental photo of friends. You can find them at A.C. Moore in Dover and Wilmington, You’ve Been Framed in Newark, and many arts and crafts stores throughout the state.

Photo courtesy of Richard Hanel OF 
You’ve Been Framed 

A student is certainly going to be all weepy and nostalgic when he or she graduates. A comfy hoodie, a blanket or even a pair of socks will cheer them up.

Delaware State Bookstore
1200 N. Dupont Hwy., Dover

Barnes & Noble UD Bookstore
83 E. Main St., Newark

Wesley College Book Store
120 N. State St., Dover

Delaware Technical Community College Wilmington Campus Bookstore
333 N. Shipley St., Wilmington

A perfect way to help a graduate adapt to the real world. Even better, make them cook for you. Good beginner’s cookbooks include “Delia’s Complete How to Cook” by Delia Smith, “Jamie’s Comfort Food” by Jamie Oliver and “Gluten-Free on a Shoestring” by Nicole Hunn.

High school grads


This may be the single most important thing for a freshman in college. The average Windows notebook sells for around $700 while an Apple laptop is usually about twice that. You can find laptops at any tech store, such as Best Buy, HH Gregg or Target.


There aren’t many things that get more use on a college campus than a solid pair of headphones. Students walk a lot and music helps with the monotony. Also, studying in the library is nearly impossible without headphones. There’s a wide range of headphone choices, and you can pick them up at pretty much any place that sells music. Just watch out for quality, because nothing is more frustrating than a busted pair of headphones that you just paid for.

Photo via Robert Couse-Baker (license here)

A bike is an extremely efficient way to get around campus, especially during the confusion of the first month or so.

Lewes Cycle Sports
526 E. Savannah Road, Lewes

Pedal Works Cyclery
38613 Benro Drive, Unit 4, Delmar

Mimi’s Toys & Bicycles
110 N. Dupont Hwy., New Castle

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