32 Great Graduation Gifts That Are Thoughtful and Useful

32 Great Graduation Gifts That Are Thoughtful and Useful

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Somehow, incredibly, it’s graduation season again. You might be scrambling to find the perfect graduation gifts for the young adult or kiddo in your life who’s growing up way too fast. No matter their age or level of education, accomplishing years of education amid a global pandemic is anything but easy. That’s why your daughter, son, sister, brother, or friend celebrating this major milestone deserves the very best, exceptionally thoughtful grad gifts.

Whether they’re leaving middle school, high school, college, or even graduating with a professional degree, they’ll have many new responsibilities and challenges to navigate, from learning to drive or picking up more chores, to cooking for themselves and building a career. The best graduation gifts are reminders of what they’ve accomplished, and they’re also items and services that help them transition into the future.

Below, we’ve broken down the best grad gifts by type: gifts for college grads, gifts for high school grads, gifts for nursing or medical school grads, gifts for law school grads, gifts for elementary and middle school grads, and gifts for preschool grads. From meaningful presents that mark their achievements to best sellers that will be useful in their next steps, we’ve rounded up a variety of traditional, creative, and practical graduation gift ideas for all types of graduates. And we found them, conveniently, from brands and retailers like Target, Amazon, Etsy, Nordstrom, Minted, and subscription services.

Best College Graduation Gifts

When thinking about the perfect gift for young adults graduating college, look for things that will make their life easier as they navigate post-grad life. A meal kit or meal delivery service like Home Chef is an excellent way for them to sharpen their culinary skills, try new recipes, and save time on grocery shopping. If they already have the cooking skills, handy cookware like Our Place’s cult-favorite Always Pan or the Instant Pot is supremely helpful for prepping food after a long day in the real world. 

Clothing subscription boxes like eco-conscious Frank and Oak make shopping for office-ready clothes (or work from home clothes) seamless. Amazon’s Echo Dot combines the benefits of an alarm clock and a speaker, plus everyone’s favorite, Alexa. For a more unique graduation gift that’s still useful for college grads, look to custom photo art they can display in their new apartment. A big blanket for movie nights or cuddling with their pet is perfect for their night-ins. And speaking of blankets, upgrading to a high-quality duvet set will help make their bedroom an oasis.

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Echo Dot (4th Gen) Smart Speaker with Clock

Image may contain: Cooker, Appliance, Bottle, Shaker, and Slow Cooker

Instant Pot Ultra 10-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker

Black picture frame


Minted Quintet Custom Photo Art

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Big Blanket Co. Original Stretch Blanket

Ivory West Elm Cooling Down Alternative Duvet Insert (Full/Queen Size)

West Elm

West Elm Cooling Down Alternative Duvet Insert (Full/Queen Size)

Best High School Graduation Gifts

For the high school graduate who may be on their way to college, technical school, or taking a gap year, say congrats with thoughtful items that recognize their responsibility as young adults. A coffee maker, air fryer, or other small home appliances are excellent ideas for soon-to-be college students gathering supplies for their dorm room. You could also go the route of an Amazon Prime subscription which provides a time-saving way for them to order everything from desk and office supplies t

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