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It’s been a rough couple of years for the graduating class of 2021. Graduating from high school has always been filled with anticipation of the unknown and that’s even more true this year. Maybe they’re entering the workforce or pursuing a higher education; if they’re heading off to college, it’s hard to say whether that’ll be from a computer at home or actually moving into a dorm. In any case, we’ve rounded up the best high school graduation gifts that will please any grad, no matter where they’re headed next.
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1. Herschel Supply Co. Novel Duffle Bag
A good weekender bag is something that will last them a long time. It’s sure to come in handy for weekends home from college or getaways with friends. This classic duffle is just the right one. It’s made with sturdy fabric that’ll even hold up on a luggage carousel, while the contrasting faux leather trim adds sophistication. There’s an interior zip pocket, two-way zipper closure, top carry handles, an adjustable and removable shoulder strap and an interior mesh storage sleeve that’s makes for a handy shoe compartment.
2. Cowin E7 Active Noise Cancelling Headphones
Trying to study in a loud dorm room can be almost impossible at times. The same goes for plenty of workplaces, which is why noise cancelling headphones are a must. This pair by Cowin has advanced active noise-reduction technology to bring a bit of peace and quiet wherever you wear them, and it works in both wire and wireless mode. They deliver crisp, clear sound and have a built-in microphone and NFC technology, as well as comfortable earpads and 90° swiveling earcups. A single charge delivers 30 hours of playtime in Bluetooth mode.
3. Supernova Electric Aromatherapy Diffuser
You definitely don’t want to write this in the card, but dorm rooms can sometimes smell a little… funky. This aroma diffuser takes care of the problem in an elegant and subtle way, and lasts a lot longer than a spray. The striking yet simple design only needs water and the essential oil of your choice. Then a ceramic resonator uses ultrasonic vibrations to turn the scented water into a mist, which it releases into the air. There’s no need to worry about leaving it on for too long, since it has a built-in timer with 60-, 90- or 120-minute options, along with automatic shut-off.
4. Apple AirTag
Does your graduate struggle with keeping tabs on certain things say their keys, umbrella, bike, luggage, purse or backpack? Stop fretting and gift them the Apple AirTag. This simple tracking device connects to the “Find My” app (which can identify multiple tags if you have more than one). Once activated, the fob can be instructed to play a little sound to help you locate it. If your missing item is even further away the tag will appear on a map and use precision finding to help you locate whatever it is you lost. Available on a leather key ring or without. And if your graduate doesn’t have an Apple phone, no worries, there’s always the classic bluetooth tracker Tile.
5. Echo Dot Alarm Clock With Smart Plug
Just because your graduate is staying in a cement block of a dorm room, that doesn’t mean they can’t install their domain with the latest and greatest tech. The fourth generation of the Amazon Echo Dot has come a long way from simple speaker. Compatible with Alexa, this alarm clock is a tiny smart home all rolled into one esthetically pleasing ball. The plug allows your voice-controlled Echo to turn on lights, adjust thermostats, and lock doors with bluetooth compatible devices. Set reminders and timers via your phone or just ask Echo to set it out loud, and don’t worry there’s a snooze button right on top. The latest generation is also enabled with privacy protections and controls, including a microphone off button that will disconnect all microphones connected.
6. Vogek Five-Port Charging Station
Between a phone, laptop and tablet, being a student requires a lot of battery power — and so does life in general. Make sure your grad’s devices always have a full battery with a charging station. This five-slot USB charging station keeps it all tidy and organized, too. It comes with four lightning cables, two micro USB cables, two USB C cables and can juice up as many as five smartphones and tablets at the same time. This little guy is speedy at replenishing the batteries too, thanks to a 50W 10A powerful output.
7. Ugg Coastline Plush Throw Blanket
Whether your fresh grad is moving into a dorm in the fall or their first home on their own, you never know what to expect from those thermostats – or aggressive air conditioners! That’s why a cozy blanket is a must. This one is equally perfect for curling up on a couch or bed. The super plush flannel blanket is incredibly soft. Even better, it’s machine washable, making it practical, too.
8. Mancio Slim Vintage Laptop Backpack
No matter if they’re going to class, work, the gym or even an overnight getaway, everyone could use a fresh backpack. This unisex style is sleek and chic, plus functional. Made from sturdy yet lightweight Oxford nylon material that’s tear-resistant, it has plenty of pockets to stash all the necessities, with five compartments total. The laptop sleeve holds up to a 15.6-inch laptop, plus there’s an external USB charging port and built-in charging cable inside so you don’t have to worry about your phone dying. Padded and adjustable shoulder straps ease the load no matter how much you’re lugging around.
9. Bodum Brazil French Press
Coffee and college go hand-in-hand. When your grad is up all night studying, long after the coffee shops have closed, this French press will be their best friend. It only takes four minutes to make coffee or tea. It doesn’t require an outlet, making it dorm-safe, and it’s equipment-free, since no paper filters or capsules are necessary. The base and handle are made of BPA-free polypropylene, the carafe is made of German heat-resistant borosilicate glass and the plunger is made of stainless steel, so it’s built to last.
10. Mavogel Cotton Sleep Eye Mask
Grads are at the age when their sleeping schedule tends to be anything but regular, and just wait until they get to college. Help them catch more zzz’s with a top-notch sleeping mask. This unisex sleeping mask is ergonomically designed to deliver a comfy fit while blocking out light from every angle. It’s handmade from five layers of extra breathable materials — including cotton, elastic sponge and modaire — to feel soft on the skin, delivering an ultra soft and fresh touch on the eyes.
11. Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop
No matter where they’re learning from — a campus or the home couch — a new laptop will always be a welcome gift. This one checks all the boxes without breaking the bank. It has a MD Ryzen 3 3200U dual core processor (up to 3.5GHz), 4GB DDR4 memory and 128GB PCIe NVMe SSD. The 15.6” screen is in full HD with a LED backlit IPS display and AMD Radeon Vega 3 Mobile Graphics. It has a 1 USB 3.1 Gen 1 Port, two USB 2.0 ports and one HDMI port with HDCP support. It comes with Windows 10 in S mode, a backlit keyboard and the battery lasts for up to 7.5 hours.