With less than a week to go until Christmas and with Hanukkah wrapping up its eight-day long festivities, law students are heading home for the holiday season to spend time with family and loved ones. When asked what gifts they’d like, students’ responses usually consist of a good night’s sleep or passing grades. Since those wishes are a bit more difficult to grant, here is a list compiled by Before the Bar with practical requests from students around the nation.
The big guns
If you’re able to drop a bit of cash on your favorite law student, electronic needs topped the list of a lot of students.
An oft-overlooked law student need is a wireless printer, reams of printer paper and ink cartridges. Students use a ton of ink and paper, printing out notes, outlines, papers, memos, and resumes. Consider Best Buy, with its hundreds of wireless printers, which has price points beginning at just $20 for the printer itself.
The newest phones hitting the market are making most headphones obsolete — wireless headphones are the new now. Beats by Dre now offers wireless headphones that can block out background noise, or provide that perfect mix of study music.
And speaking of study music, subscriptions to music services can hit all the right notes (yes, pun intended) for even the pickiest of students. Consider giving the gift of a yearly Spotify or Pandora music so students can create their own playlists for whichever situation or mood hits. Apple and Amazon also have impressive music subscription options!
Additional gift ideas from current law students in the electronics/gadgets category include:
- Flash drives with lots of memory (and show your school spirit!)
- Keurig coffee maker/pods
- Portable cell phone chargers
- Book light
- Book holder
- Lumbar support for library chairs
- Keypad cover for laptop to prevent spills
Microwave your notebook
A last-minute addition to our last-minute gift guide is the Rocketbook Wave Smart Notebook. This gadget promises to upload your notes to your favorite cloud-based storage service. And provided you’re using a special pen you can then … microwave the whole notebook clean. It’s 80 pages and reusable up to 5 times. Just don’t confuse it with a reheated slice of pizza.
Subscriptions are a failsafe gift, because a) they’re instant, if you’re in a time crunch, b) they show you’ve thought about the student’s needs, and c) they last all year, so your student will think of you every time they get a new one in the mail!
In addition to the music subscriptions referenced above, other ideas include meal subscriptions. What busy, overstressed and pressed-for-time student wouldn’t love to come home to a meal that’s ready to prepare and has all the ingredients included and measured out? Blue Apron, Hello Fresh and Home Fresh are three of the big contenders out there. Their items are fresh, their recipes easy to follow, and they all allow for different subscription types based on dietary needs and needed frequency. If you want to send healthy snacks via subscription, check out Nature Box.
Yes, it’s true, you can purchase a subscription to a clothing line! Boxes show up monthly, so your law student would always have a fresh outfit to wear for a networking event, a day in court, or an important interview. Check out Stitch Fix, which chooses wardrobes based on the person’s size and style, or a surprise box subscription like Sprezza Box, a men’s box that contains things like ties and tie clips, sunglasses, pocket squares, dress socks and more. Gwynnie Bee caters to women sizes 10-23 with its monthly subscription service and its dresses are definitely courtroom worthy.
A package of study aids
It’s never too early (or too late!) to start studying for the bar exam. To really help out your favorite law student, give them $25 to Go Premium in the Law Student Division. That gets them exclusive savings on bar review courses.
The $25 Premium membership also gets students:
- Up to $50 off on West Academic textbooks and casebooks
- Study aids and ethics outlines from Quimbee
- The Legal Ethics Bundle, which includes a free Ebook of the Model Rules of Professional Conduct;
- Access to the Law Student Division’s mentoring platform, featuring resume reviews and the opportunity to grab a coffee with attorneys.
Practical and priced right
When it’s time to just sit back and relax, these gifts do the trick. From tailgating supplies to office must-haves, these items work for any law student.
Tailgate chairs work for tailgating, sure, but also when there is an extra guest at study session, or when the campus is crazy busy and there aren’t any open seats for studying or relaxing. They’re great on trips, like camping getaways, and store easily in the trunk of most any car. Find one with some school spirit and show your student you’re on her team!
Law school books are HEAVY. Super heavy. Back-breaking heavy. So why not relieve that pressure with a rolling backpack? There are tons of styles and sizes to fit any preference, and you can pick one up at your local Target or other nearby superstore.
A padfolio is a unique gift that works for any year of law school — it can be used for resumes, meeting notes or even in court. It’s priced right with quick shipping over at Amazon and it’s a thoughtful gift for any student to open. Adding a bouquet of pens and some nice highlighters to this gift rounds it out.
Additional gift ideas from current law students in the must-have items category include:
- Post-It flags or tabs
- Travel coffee mugs (Tervis offers collegiate designs)
- Instant Pot for easy cooking
- Pet supplies (consider treats, grooming or other helpful gifts)
- Adhesive whiteboard sticker/dry erase pens/erasers
Let’s get personal
Personalization is a wonderful and simple way to show your law student they’re special to you.
All students need business cards for networking and job hunting, so why not help them out with a fun and personal design? Companies like Moo have fun shapes and designs, while Vistaprint offers incredibly inexpensive options and impeccable customer service. For an endless sea of unique designs, visit Etsy to see what a variety of artists have to offer. Additionally, many of these companies offer matching personalized thank-you notes for post-interview, post-networking and post-marketing courtesy. A portable business card holder is a nice touch to this gift.
Eventually, your law student will graduate, and she will want to frame her diploma. What a treat to offer this professional service as a nice surprise gift! Stores like Hobby Lobby, JoAnn Fabrics and Michael’s offer custom framing, and most have online coupons and other promotions so the services are a fraction of the listed price.
What law student doesn’t need a professional headshot? Find a local photographer and arrange a photo shoot with your law student. This is the type of gift that is personal, practical and will last throughout law school. Professional photos can go on resumes, business cards, web sites, social media pages, and be used when he is in the news, speaking at an engagement or working as a club or organization member. Be sure to include a package that has digital prints so your student can easily share online.
When all else fails, give your student a gift card and it’s a safe bet it’ll be appreciated, used and enjoyed. Some great places to score a gift card are grocery stores, restaurants, delivery services (midnight studying, anyone?), coffee, office supply stores, a spa, a paid vacation, clothing (professional or study/comfort), a local scavenger hunt, tickets to a local play or concert, or a local coupon site like Groupon or Living Social.
We wish you all Happy Holidays, however you celebrate!