Gifts for Jewish Graduates

Some suggestions beyond the fountain pen and briefcase.


Every year in May and June graduates from middle school, high school, college, and various graduate programs don their caps and gowns and march to accept their diplomas . Later, they gather in restaurants and backyards for graduation parties, where they expect to be plied with gifts that will aid them on their journey toward further accomplishments and success. But what to get those Jewish grads? Here are some gift ideas for all kinds of graduates and all kinds of budgets. Skip the fountain pen and the briefcase–we’ve got you covered Whether you’re looking for gifts for graduates heading off to college or gifts for all kinds of grads

For Graduates Heading off to College

Snarky T-Shirts
Aside from being funny and comfy, Logo T-Shirts are practically a required uniform on many college campuses, so you can be sure your gift will be in heavy rotation. Check out the fun Jewish-themed offerings at Rotem Gear (Burekas, Not Bagels $29), and Ella Klara (Blessed to be a Woman $25, Repairing the World $28).


Jewish T-shirts

Shabbat Away From Home Kit
Celebrating Shabbat away from home requires a few ritual items. Ensure your graduate has an opportunity to light candles and say Kiddush on Friday night with a kit that includes travel candlesticks, candles, a Kiddush cup, a plastic bottle for wine, and a laminated prayer card. (Shabbat to Go, $31.95) There’s a no-frills version that also includes a havdalah candle and a spice sack (Mini-Shabbos Kit, $7) and a fancier painted wood version if you want to spend a little more. (Zion Judaica, $82)


Travel Shabbat Kits


Hebrew-English Word Processor
If your graduate is moving on to another school, consider investing in Hebrew word processing software for their computer. A vital tool for those who study and write about Judaism or the Hebrew Bible, it’s a practical gift with a Jewish theme. Just make sure to find out if your user has a Mac or a PC. (Davkawriter Platinum 6, $159)


Davka Writer

Mezuzah for a Dorm Room

Moving to a new place means new doorways, and new doorways need mezuzot. Mezuzot come in all shapes, sizes, and price ranges, but the handmade varieties on are particularly beautiful.

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Tamar Fox is an associate editor at She has an MFA in fiction writing from Vanderbilt University, and a BA from the University of Iowa. She has worked as the editor of the religion blog at, and is on the Editorial Board at The Jew and the Carrot. She spent a summer as a fellow at Yeshivat Hadar, and was a Senior Apprentice Artist for four years at Gallery 37 in Chicago.

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