The time leading up to college is nothing if not suffocating, and sometimes, it is easy to feel completely isolated. After all, much of the decision-making is completely up to you––what schools you look at, whether or not you put in the work to apply to those schools, and where you ultimately end up choosing to go.
This makes it easy to forget about all of the people that helped you along your senior year and even earlier in your life. Advisers, teachers, employers and tutors are just a few of the people that likely had a huge impact on your life leading up to and during your college process. Her Campus is here to help you show them a little appreciation with 11 gifts for anyone who helped you in your college process!
1. Baggu Bag
These cute totes ($5.50-$36) are super durable and come in various colors, patterns, sizes and fabrics. They’re also trendy and good for the environment, and can be put to tons of different uses, like book and grocery carrying.
2. Cute and geeky mugs
Why not make a statement with your drink container? These trendy mugs ($12-$16) are perfect for any tutor or English teacher (or anyone who loves coffee or tea). You could even use mugs for small plants or as pen and pencil holders––the possibilities are endless!
3. Rifle Paper Co. stationery
Stationery is adorable to begin with. So, personalized stationery just adds a sweet touch. This is a great gift for college guidance counselors who are writing notes all the time. Rifle Paper Co. has tons of different pre-made designs for stationery ($15-$22) and other office items, as well as the option to add monograms and names!
Related: The Truth About Counselor Recommendation Letters
4. Writer’s journal
Full of prompts and ideas for new and veteran writers, 642 Things to Write About ($16.95) is bound to appeal to teachers, tutors and advisers alike! There’s also 642 Tiny Things to Write About or 642 Tiny Things to Draw, both for $9.95! Any of these will provide teachers and tutors with a fun, creative break from the droves of papers (and college essays) they are constantly correcting!
5. Counselor lunch bag
This little canvas lunch pail ($16.99) is practical and darling. Better yet, it is machine washable and can replace plastic bags or other waste someone might use for his or her lunch—good for the environment! This is the perfect gift for anyone you know who is trying to be more eco-friendly.
6. Zen garden
Somehow, playing in this little Zen garden ($21.99) while on the brink of a college-related mental breakdown in your guidance counselor’s office always manages to calm you down. This gift is beneficial for you, the gift receiver and future students!
7. Mason jar organizers
These desk organizers ($29) are well suited for the alternative, hippy teacher we have all had at some point. They work for pencils, pens, flowers and other office supplies. This would even be a fun craft to do on your own!
8. Wine-scented candles
While alcohol is generally looked down upon in work settings (and where there are individuals under the drinking age), these wine-scented candles ($28-29) might not be! Candles don’t necessarily need to be lit to emit their fragrances, so the potential fire hazard can be avoided altogether!
9. Math formulas tie
While it is a little on the pricey side, this awesome tie ($49) will give your favorite math teacher a story to tell each time he or she wears it. Additionally, as stated in the description, “putting on this tie might just make you smarter!” Alternatively, try this math mug, which is much cheaper at $15.95.
10. Bulletin board organizer
This awesome bulletin board is expensive at $75, so it might either have to be for a super special adviser or teacher, or perhaps something you split up with a few friends and gift as a group! This bulletin board is not only practical, but also customizable and just generally cool looking.
11. Flowers or baked goods
If these don’t float your boat, flowers, plants and baked goods are reliably great gifts for anyone. Orchids or succulents work perfectly—they’re very low maintenance and, if taken care of, can last a really long time! These are easy to find at your local grocery store, and if you’d like to go for the fancier flowers and plant arrangements, hit up your nearest florist. Baked goods are easy, fun to make and a great alternative to some of these pricier options. Try to figure out your teacher’s favorite dessert for that extra bit of thoughtfulness!
Don’t forget to add a personal note to each of these gifts to add an extra touch of gratitude. Just like the adults in your life likely say all the time, everyone loves a handwritten note!
As long as your gift is heartfelt, the size or price of the gift itself likely matters little (but keep in mind it might be a little awkward to get a teacher a particularly expensive or extravagant gift). Graduate knowing that you’ve expressed your appreciation for all those who helped you along the way and take comfort knowing they’ll be there for you if ever you need them again in the future.
If you’re like many high school seniors, the end is in sight. You’ve spent four years working hard, seeking help when needed and applying yourself to the fullest of your abilities. It’s been a wild ride, and with college application deadlines either passed or in your immediate future, odds are that most of the work is now behind you.
With the hardest parts out of the way, have you paused to consider how you’ll thank the people who helped to make it possible? Whether they’re teachers, guidance counselors, mentors, friends, or siblings, they were a part of your journey and where you are today is at least in some small way due to their assistance.
Thanking people can sometimes seem like an overwhelming task when their role in your future is so big. Your debt might seem unpayable, but odds are that even the smallest of thank you’s will lend credence to their role in your high school years. It doesn’t take an over-the-top display of gratitude to express your thanks. In this post, we offer five gift suggestions for all the people who’ve made a difference.
For the person who is always nursing a mug of tea or a cup of coffee:
We all know someone who seems attached to their warm beverages. Whether it’s about a morning caffeine hit or a warm cup of afternoon comfort, these warm drink aficionados are rarely without a mug in their reach. What can you possibly give them to show your thanks?
A high quality travel mug such as a Yeti is one great option. Alternatively, try a personalized mug with a photo of your class or of you and your mentor together. You could even purchase a mug that’s of personal relevance to them, such as a favorite sports team or a local artist’s print. Complete your gift with an enclosed beverage. This could be a box of your teacher’s favorite tea, if you happen to know it, or a gift card to a local cafe or coffee shop.
For the person who raves about culture and the arts:
Is your mentor someone who can’t pass up a local art show and never stops raving about the latest local theater presentation? Is his or her office plastered in fine art prints or homemade canvas work?
If so, consider museum pass or membsership, depending on cost. If no local art museums seem convenient enough, think about a print from a local artist. If possible, find one with some personal relevance such as a a subject that you know your mentor loves or a landscape that’s familiar.
If you’re giving a museum pass, be certain that it’s for general admission and can be used on any day. Sometimes, passes to special events and displays will be good for limited periods and you risk your mentor not being able to attend. Try a general admission pass to increase his or her options.
For the person who nurtures classroom or household plants:
Do you need to thank someone who seems to have a green thumb? Does one of your mentors proudly dote on plants the way some do on pets or children? Is his or her classroom a veritable greenhouse of vegetation?
For these mentors, consider creating your own green thumb gift bag. Some options to include could be a gift card to a local gardening store, a set of glass blown self-watering stakes, and a small garden ornament, like a fairy or gnome. Pack your gift items into a quality planting pot
(bonus points for something hand painted or locally made) and write your note on an extra-large gardening stake for a special touch.