Graduating ceremonies for the class of 2018 for senior-year students in academia will begin some time in May. Students are already prepping for their last act in school. Year book photos are being taken, cap and gown orders underway, and invitations to attend the ceremonies are mailed. On that big day, from kindergarten to college, graduands will don cap, gown and mortarboard, and march to the music of “Pomp and Circumstance” by the English composer Sir Edward Elgar. It is a proud moment in their lives.
Family, friends and invited guests will make the trek to celebrate with their loved one. Most likely, many people will drive to area high schools or distant university campuses to attend the one or two-day event. From here on I speak in reference to the young twenty-one year old college student. Specifically, in the case of universities,
some may spend several hours on the road to reach their destination. After all, it is the end of a long academic and financial journey. Their loved one has successfully completed all requirements needed to earn a diploma/degree. Now the time to transition from dorm life into the real world, that is, to find a job and start fending for themselves, has come. Before parents, family and friends arrive, on their minds must be this one question, “what kind of gift should I give to the graduate?” Let me give you a hint. The best gift would be an all-expenses paid vacation to anywhere far from home, school and probably out of the country. They would be ecstatic to receive such an unexpected treat.
Last year USA Today recommended 16 gifts for graduates, in my opinion, mostly suited to a school senior (not the alcohol decanter set). Only three of them hinted at travel. For the collegiate, a surprise ticket to a foreign land followed up with a customized itinerary would work wonders for the mentally tired, stressed student. Every scholar would love the opportunity to visit a different country (Barbados maybe?), sample a different cuisine, and experience a new culture. A holiday would be the icing on the cake for them. To start their new lives with total relaxation is not a bad idea. As they prepare to walk and throw their mortarboards into the air in celebration of their academic accomplishment, all the while relishing the idea of no more books, late night studies, or cramming for exams, a one or two-week respite would be a dream come true and certainly a good fix to re-energize them.
Currently proud moms and dads are busy sending out save-the-date notices. Have you gotten yours? While the proposal for international travel may be a financial hardship for some families, don’t forget a road trip could be an exciting alternative too. For sure, the extended family and friends could be included on the road adventure to help celebrate and defray costs. Either travel option does not have to start immediately but can be delayed for a few months or until the end of the year.
Whichever option is chosen, it will be the ideal gift for the graduand to unwind and loosen up. Serious talks of the future can come at the end of the vacation 😊. If you are interested in coordinating a customized itinerary, check me out.
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