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Gifts for the Class of 2005
June, 2005 - Issue #8
Sure, everyone can write a check, but these gifts say, "I'm sending you off into the world a little more prepared." Hold on to that card with the money slot and start thinking about how you're going to wrap these oddly shaped, but just as appreciated, gifts.

For the High School Grad Going Away to College
- Laundry Service
Head to your local retailer and purchase a laundry basket, detergent, dryer sheets and a couple rolls of quarters. Nothing says "self-sufficient" like doing your own laundry.
- Alma Mater Goodies
Depending on the size of your graduate's future school, sweatshirts, mugs, license plate holders, t-shirts, and more are available with their university's logo, and it's probably online. For smaller schools, contact the campus bookstore and purchase over the phone.
- Bookstore Cash
How do you guarantee that your "Happy Graduation" check doesn't get spent on beer at their first frat party? Purchase gift certificates to the campus bookstore, where they will be able to buy logo-wear, snacks, music and (surprise, surprise) books.

For the High School Grad Heading to a Trade School
- The Best Money can Buy
So they're going to be a hairstylist/mechanic/Maytag repairman? They'll probably need their own set of profession-specific tools. Buy them one "best" product for their field (get tips from an established pro if necessary). Good scissors can cost more than $100; she'll be happy that she didn't have to spend her hair-washing tip money on cutting tools.
- Experience their Craft
Get the future mechanic tickets to a car show. Buy that fashion-designer front-row catwalk seats. Giving them an opportunity to witness the best their profession has to offer will not only be inspirational, it will be an experience they're sure to enjoy.

For the Junior College Grad Off to a University
- Social Time
Transfer students only have half the time to experience true "college life," and that's why many join sororities, fraternities or service organizations. Offer to pay for a year of membership dues to their social group of choice - it may help them make friends, and build memories, faster.
- Got Gas?
Kids that may be leaving established college friendships/relationships behind are going to struggle, especially if they can't afford $3 a gallon for gas so that they can visit regularly. Purchasing a gas card for your grad says, "I wouldn't mind seein' ya every once in a while!"

For the College Graduate
- Job Interviews in Style
Don't make them go to their first interview with their resume in a backpack. Buy the best soft-sided (aka not "dorky") briefcase you can afford and know that they'll think of you every time they take it to their job at a law firm/PR firm/McDonalds.
- What a Trip
We aren't fans of sending high schoolers on senior trips without adult supervision (We say this because we were high schoolers on senior trips without supervision - trust us.). That being said, college grads are different. If you have the funds, pay for airfare to some exotic locale (if you're short on funds, buy them train fare to a more domestic location). Most new-on-the-job kids won't see vacation time for at least a year, and the process of graduating from college isn't a cakewalk - they'll need time to recoup. Give them their last "hurrah" before they have to enter the dreaded "real world."
- Break the Rules
Every rule is made to be broken. Bust out the checkbook and add a few extra zeros to the end of that number - this kid's probably strapped with student loans and could use the cash.
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