Education is the best provision for old age.
After years and years of hard work, my very own little sister is about to graduate from medical school. This is a big event not only for her, but also for our whole family. Shopping for her graduation gift has not been easy. Like other gift giving occasions, the perfect present is something the person would like, but would not necessarily buy for him/herself. In addition, the graduation gift should help mark the individual's transition from campus to career. Here are some hints to help you choose the perfect gift for your graduate.
The Grand Tour ~ Back when only the incredibly rich attended college, they would celebrate their graduation by being sent on a grand tour of Europe. While a summer in Paris would be lovely, any travel helps to broaden one's mind. A weekend in a big city with a fancy dinner, a show and a day in a museum is a fun alternative.
- Mannersmith favorites: A gift certificate to an elegant restaurant or tickets to a show.
- Mannersmith favorites: For gradates entering the business arena - Fortune, Newsweek, and Working Woman (when appropriate!).
- Mannersmith favorites: Coach leather portfolio, Disney's Mickey Mouse portfolio and the mini portfolio from Levenger's.
- Mannersmith favorites: Cross Pens and Mont Blanc Pens - depending on your budget.
- Mannersmith favorite: Crane's Stationery.
- Mannersmith favorite: cases with Frank Lloyd Wright designs and, at the high end, a Tiffany's business card case.
- Mannersmith favorite: as with the portfolio, Coach comes quickly to mind.
- Mannersmith favorite: a Movado Museum watch is a classic graduation gift.
Q: Dear Mannersmith ~ My neighbor's daughter just sent me a graduation announcement. Am I obligated to send a gift?
A: A graduation announcement is just that, to let you know about this special event. As with other announcements and invitations, you are not obligated to give a gift. However, if you are so moved, or feel close enough to the individual, a gift would be appropriate. If you decided not to send a gift, a thoughtful card or letter should be sent.
Q: Dear Mannersmith ~ I was invited to attend my brother-in-law's college graduation. There are actually two graduation ceremonies, one for the
entire university and one for his college. I could barely sit through my graduation; do I have to go to his?
A: Without knowing your family history, I would have to say that for the sake of family peace, my answer would be yes. And you should do so with a smile on your face.
Q: Dear Mannersmith ~ I am graduating this year and want to invite my friends and family out for dinner afterwards. How do I word the invitation so that they know they will have to pay for their own meal?
A: There really is no tactful way for you to do the inviting and then insist on them doing the paying. You have a few options. 1. Host a cake and punch fete after the ceremony that would be within your budget. 2. Enlist the cooperation of a friend or family member who would be willing to loan you the money until after your first paycheck. Or 3. Ask a close relative to coordinate a dinner in your honor, with everyone chipping in to cover the cost of his or her meal as well as yours. Good luck!