gift ideas for the high school graduate

Posted : May 6, 2008
Last Updated : April 19, 2018

gift ideas for the high school graduate

Need gift ideas for your graduating senior? Here are some ideas to help you select the best graduation gift for your son or daughter.


The most popular high school graduation gift is money. As long as you don't care how it gets spent, feel free to write a check and stick it in a graduation card. It may not seem very heartfelt to you, but it is usually the most wanted gift of graduates.

Gift Cards

If you worry that your graduate may not make the best financial decisions, you may want to give gift cards instead of cash. These can range from gas cards to grocery store gift cards. These are great gifts because you know that your child will have the necessary expenses taken care of for the first few months of college.

Laptop Computer

A new computer is a great gift for any college bound student. Whether to get a desktop or a laptop computer will depend on user preference, but keep in mind that the laptop will offer more convenience. Your child would be able to take it with him to lectures to type notes and to group meetings around campus. With a laptop, he would also be able to work on papers or projects if he has a little downtime between classes.


A tablet makes a wonderful gift for a high school grad because it will help condense her load in college. Instead of carrying multiple notebooks and textbooks to each class, the student can use a device that incorporates everything into one. Your college bound student can take notes, study for tests, download digital textbooks, and more all on the tablet.


A watch is a great graduation present because it can be engraved with a special message to show your child how proud you are of him. Plus, your college bound student will need it to keep him on time for class and other campus activities.

Dorm Room Decorations

Getting your child decorations for her dorm room now will help save her money when she is getting ready to move. You can get engraved picture frames, posters, a bulletin board, a small bookcase, a trunk, or anything else that your child might want for her dorm room d├ęcor.

College Gift Basket

Give your child a basket of small items that he will need once he moves away for college. Include items such as laundry detergent, dryer sheets, shampoo/conditioner, soaps, toothpaste, dental floss, disposable razors, lotion, etc.

Instant Camera

Your child will want to remember all the good times that she has at college and looking at pictures of her college life will be a great way for her to reminisce. While most students nowadays take pictures using their phones, instant cameras are becoming very popular again among teens.


Your incoming college freshman may appreciate a new bike as a graduation gift. Biking on campus is a great way for students to exercise, get to class quickly, and run short errands.


Studies show that listening to classical music puts students in a heightened emotional state, making them more receptive to information. Help your child with college studies by gifting him a pair of quality headphones so he can tune out any distractions while studying on campus.

Prepaid Cell Phone Cards

Help your child stay in touch with family members and friends across the country by giving him prepaid cell phone cards.

If you think of anything else that would be beneficial for a college bound student to have, don't be afraid to buy it. Your child will appreciate anything that you give him.

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