Practical Gifts for New Graduates

University Graduation

Graduation is equal parts exciting and, well, down-right scary. It marks the end of an era, and the beginning of … the rest of life. No biggie! Well, actually, it is kind of a big deal, and most new graduates will have more “big deal” life moments coming up, starting with that rite of passage that is the search for one’s first “real job”. Here are some practical gifts that will not only help commemorate their academic achievements, but will also come in handy when they take their next, big steps into the world.

Interview Bag

Guess what most new graduates’ top priority will be, once they get the celebrating out of the way? That’s right: finding a job. The job search itself can be difficult and frustrating at times, but it’s only the beginning. Its goal is the often dreaded “first serious job interview”. Help your giftee make a good first impression with a professional-looking bag. Ideally, an interview bag should be functional and look polished – no ratty messenger bags or trendy logo-ed totes need apply.





A watch is a great graduation gift – both as a symbol of a special moment in the giftee’s life, but also on a more practical level. These days, people might not rely on watches for their primary function as much as in the past – after all, it’s just as easy to check one’s smart-phone for the time – but they are still very much a stylish accessory. This is especially true in interview situations, where the “less is more” adage is particularly applicable and in-your-face jewelry and accessories are generally frowned upon. A classic watch, on the other hand? Always in style.




Financial Advice Book

One of the things many young adults struggle with is making sense of their personal finances. While there are plenty of opinions out there on the subject, there is a universal consensus that starting early is one of the most important keys to success. Help your giftee get started with a book that provides a no-nonsense approach to taking control of personal finances.

And, while you’re at it, why not add  a book that will help them in their job search, with advice on everything from resume-writing to networking and more.

Netflix Subscription

It’s a safe bet that, for budget-conscious graduates, making their first job income stretch to cover their necessities can be … well, a stretch at times. This might involve a few sacrifices, such as foregoing the cable subscription and movie theatre dates. The gift of a Netflix subscription can ease the sting of such austerity measures.

Coffee Machine

Want to give your new graduate’s budget a little further boost? How about giving them a home coffee-brewing system? Not only will they save a little time and money, but they can still enjoy their usual Starbucks favourites.


About Adina

Adina is a 30-something professional, wife, and mother of two, living the suburban dream in Edmonton, Alberta. She loves designer bags, collecting books, and balancing her family's budget (not necessarily in that order). In her spare time, she is a freelance writer and personal style blogger at Blue Collar / Red Lipstick.

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