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What gift should I get my friend for graduation?

Finding the perfect graduation gift for your friend or relative isn't always easy. Its important to think about how the gift will be recieved as well as simply what you are giving. In this article we explore some different gift ideas for graduating students and offer some unique and different ideas. Read on to learn more about what you might give...

So after all those years of living together, drinking together, partying together and studying together its finally time to graduate and move on to (even) better things. Most people make some really great friends while they’re students and for most, graduation is an important occasion.

You book your gown (with your university’s colours of course) make sure your parents have got the camera (and know how to work it) and you’ve planned the after party. But there’s always the tricky question of whether or not to buy your closest friends presents. Maybe you just feel it would be a nice way to mark how you’ve appreciated how they’ve been there for you over the years or maybe you are being bullied into it because everyone else is getting you something! Whatever the reason it’s important to get the right graduation gift.

So its time to start thinking through the different possibilities… What should you get? After doing a quick search for “popular graduation gifts” the items that turned up included money, trips to Europe, small stock account, a watch, a camera and a desk?! It soon became clear that these were suggestions exclusively for parents rather than for college friends. So if we’re looking for a graduation present for our friends at university we should find it easier to choose for them than their parents because we are the same age right? Firstly you might want to consider getting something that will last for some time (so that’s the crate of beer idea out). Try thinking what you would like to receive as a graduation gift from your friends? Perhaps something that is clearly specific to graduating and is at least usable if not useful!

We’ve considered what it would be like to your friend who is receiving the gift but how about what it will feel for you giving it? Most of us would agree that we give at least partly because it makes us feel good to give something which is appreciated. We have agreed that buying something that is usable is good so how about getting something that can be used as soon as it’s given? Something that can be used at your after graduation party for example? Imagine which is best, you give your best friend their graduation gift and they open it say “oh that’s coolArticle Search, thanks” and then put it in their bag or they actually wear it or take it with them to your final graduation celebration. You can see that your gift is appreciated and when people give compliments you will be pointed out as the one who bought it.

Now we’re getting somewhere! So we want something that can be worn at the party which is a going to get some attention. If you’ve still got a load of cash left at the end of university (not likely) you could go and buy a watch but you might find that you will do better buying a cool T-shirt with some kind of relevant design. One place which is worth having a look is on Cafepress. Cafepress is a website featuring thousands of different T-shirt designs by thousands of different designers. Different designers tend to design around a theme so depending on what your friend is into; you should be able to find the perfect design. There is a search function which works very well although often you have to go through a few pages of results before you find what you’re looking for.

I hope you find what you’re looking for and I wish you the best of luck with your graduation and a successful life as a graduate!

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Laurie Heynes is a designer and serial entrepreneur living in the UK. You can see Laurie's newest T-shirt designs for graduates in his online shop: teesforgradsIf you're looking for a unique graduation gift...look no further!

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