Graduation is a time when you'll get a lot of support and encouragement from friends and family, not to mention plenty of gifts. Seeing a few thank you note examples for graduation can help you get inspired to create your own.
Ultimately, it's all about showing how much the cash or gift means to you and communicating your appreciation to the person who gave it. There's a simple formula for writing the perfect thank you note, so you're all set once you get the basics down.
How to Write a Graduation Thank You Note
There's definitely an art to writing the perfect thank you note, but it also follows a basic pattern. Here's how to do it with minimal stress.
1. Keep a Record of the Gift When You Receive It
Graduation can come with a ton of gifts, so you need to keep records to avoid confusing who gave you what. Do this as you're opening cards and presents. A simple list with the person's name and what they gave you is plenty. For cash gifts, make a note of the amount.
2. Start the Thank You Note With a Simple Statement
Start off with a sentence that simply says "thank you for the gift of [fill in the blank]." Think of this as the topic sentence for your note.
3. Talk About How You Will Use the Gift
Next, add a sentence or two about how you'll put this gift to use or why you like it. This can be practical, such as putting the money toward college, or it can be sentimental, such as the gift reminding you of your time in school.
4. Say Something About Your Relationship
Finally, say something that shows you value the relationship. This can be about the support the person has given you, the way they showed up at your open house or graduation, or anything else. Sign the note, and you're done.
How long do you have to write a thank you note after graduation? Figure on a max of two weeks, but try to get them out sooner if you can.
Thank You Note Examples for Graduation Gifts
Use the sample text in these examples to create thank you notes or just inspire you. The best notes are personalized with the giver's name, a mention of what the gift was, such as a monetary graduation gift, and how you plan to use it. For example, if the gift was a dorm fridge, you might write: "I love my new fridge and plan to use it to keep my soda cold when I attend Indiana University in the fall." Even the most generic note can be personalized when you mention a specific gift.
Example Graduation Thank You Messages for Family and Friends
These are perfect starting points if you're writing a note to your grandparents, good friends, aunts and uncles, or anyone else:
- I am so glad that you were able to come to my graduation. I wanted to thank you for your support of me throughout my high school years and for the wonderful gift card, which I plan to use toward the purchase of a mini fridge for my dorm room. Your thoughtfulness is greatly appreciated.
- Thank you so much for the gift card, which is going toward picking up the dorm room basics I really need. I really appreciate your support, not just today, but throughout my life. You're a big part of the reason I'm graduating today, and I'll never stop being grateful.
- I wouldn't be the person I am today if it weren't for your love and example. Although I greatly appreciate the graduation gift, the legacy you've given me of a loving family is worth more than all the laptop computers in the world. As I head off to Harvard University in the fall, I am going to miss you so much. However, I take with me the lessons you've taught me over the last 18 years. I love you and plan to make you proud.
- Thank you for the new bedspread. It's going to look amazing on my bed at school, and the cheerful colors will always remind me of you. Be ready for me to call a lot because I'm going to miss you a ton.
- I appreciate the Visa gift card you gave me at my open house last weekend. I plan to use the gift card toward some of the essentials I need for my dorm room, such as a bedspread, sheets, and a trash can. While I am away at Old Miss, I will think of you fondly every time I use these items. I have enjoyed having you as neighbors for the last ten years and thank you for not telling my parents that time that I left your hose on when I was little. Ha ha!
- Throughout my life, you've known the exact gift I need, even when I didn't know I needed it. Well, you've done it again. Your graduation gift of that crazy zebra-striped rug was exactly what I needed for my dorm room. I can't wait to get to school and decorate my room with it. I'm sure I'll be the envy of the entire floor, not to mention that in the winter I will be thrilled to have something soft and warm to put my feet on when I get out of bed in the mornings. Thank you for supporting me in so many ways.
- Your support has always been important to me, and I know that your lovely card and gift are an extension of that. I'll put the money toward things I need for my dorm room. Thank you so, so much.
- Thank you for the thoughtful card and check, but I'm just as grateful for the advice you've given me over the years. I am going to miss you so much! Your advice helped me stay sane through my teen years. I know you're only a phone call away, but it just won't be the same. I love you very much.
- Thanks for stopping by my open house and for the generous check. It means a lot to have your support, just as it always has. I'm putting the gift toward my tuition next year, and I really appreciate it.
- I can't tell you how much it meant to me to have you at graduation and to receive your card and the generous cash gift. I'm putting it toward my college textbook fund, and it's going to help so much. Thank you, not only for the gift, but all your help with the graduation party and getting me through my teen years.
Examples of Graduation Thank You Notes for Money
It can be a little tricky to think about how to thank someone for money, since it's not something we talk about a lot. Still, acknowledging the gift is important. Here are a few ways to phrase it:
- Thank you for your generous check, but even more for your graduation wishes.
- I can't tell you how much I appreciate your card and the cash gift.
- Thank you for the love, endless encouragement, and thoughtful cash gift.
- I am so grateful for your gift, which I will put toward my college fund.
- Thank you for your card and generous gift.
- I really appreciate the sweet note and gift card you sent for my graduation.
- I appreciate your emotional support, as well as the generous cash gift.
- Thank you for the check, which I'll be putting toward outfitting my dorm room.
- Your generosity means so much - both in the cash gift you sent and in your love over the years.
- I can't tell you how much I appreciate your graduation wishes and generous check.
High School Graduation Thank You Note Examples
High school graduation is about more than just finishing high school. It's also a rite of passage or turning point in your life between childhood and adulthood. You can touch on this in your thank you note:
- Thank you for your thoughtful gift of the picture frame. It's going to be perfect for displaying photos of my family when I'm away next year. This is such an important moment, and I really appreciation you sharing it with me.
- Thanks for coming to my open house and for the check! I can't believe high school is over already and we're moving on to new adventures. Thanks for sharing this moment.
- Even though high school is ending, I know it's just the beginning for our friendship. Thanks for everything you've done for me over the years and for your super generous gift.
- Thank you for making this important milestone even more special. Your gift was so kind, and it meant a lot to me to have you there for the moment I officially became an adult.
- It's not every day someone so important to me is part of a such a big moment in my life. Thank you for coming to my high school graduation and for the generous gift.
Example College Graduation Thank You Messages
While you might not have an open house for your college graduation, you will likely still get cards and a few gifts. You can thank people for these gestures with a few well-chosen words:
- After four years, this was a big day for me. Thank you so much for being a part of it and for your thoughtful card and check.
- I can't tell you how much I appreciate all the support you've given me as I've gotten my degree. Thanks for the gift card! I'll use it to set up my new place!
- I couldn't have gotten this degree without your help. Thanks for always taking my calls when I really needed reminders of how I could do this.
- Thank you for the lovely graduation card and for your generous gift. I'm setting up my first post-college apartment, and it's going to come in handy.
- I can't really express how much it has meant to me to have you cheering me on - both through the years of college and also in the audience today. It means so much.
Graduation Thank You Notes for Teachers
Your teachers and professors have been a huge part of your life and education, and you can thank them with a special message at graduation. Write it in a card or send it as an email. Either way, words like these mean a lot:
- Thank you for taking the extra time to meet with me after class. It made a huge difference, and so did your support. I'm graduating today because of teachers like you.
- Being in your class was my favorite part of high school (well, my favorite in-school part anyway). Thank you for the amazing life lessons you mixed in with the regular lessons.
- It's been such an honor to be in your class. As I graduate, I know a part of this moment is because of you. Thank you.
- Being your student has been an amazing thing. Thank you for supporting me as a teacher and a friend. I'm planning to stay in touch after graduation!
- It really means a lot that you came to my open house. Thanks for all the amazing conversations before and after class and for the lessons I'm never going to forget.
Graduation Messages to Say Thank You for Non-Gift Support
There are times when a person doesn't give you an actual gift or monetary reward, but you still want to thank them for their support. Not all graduation gifts are about money or a present you can unwrap. These messages can help you express your appreciation for other types of support:
- I am thankful that you took the time to think of me and to come to my open house.
- Thank you for coming to my graduation and for the love you've shared with me all these years.
- I am so thrilled to have you as my friend. I know we agreed not to exchange gifts since we were both graduating, but I want to thank you anyway. You came to my house and spent six hours helping me and my mom put together snacks and decorations for my open house. That was one of the best gifts anyone could give me. Having you as a friend means more than any other gift that I could ever receive. I can't wait until we get to room together in the fall.
- It means so much to me that came to my open house. Thank you for being there for this important moment.
- Just wanted to send a quick note to thank you for everything you did to make my open house a success and for your support over the last few years. It really means a lot.
- I feel so lucky you could come to my college graduation. Thanks for being a part of this day that's so important to me; sharing it with you made it even better.
- Having you at graduation was such a gift. Thank you for being there and for supporting me for all these years.
- Looking out at you in the audience as I accepted my diploma just meant so much. Thank you for coming to my graduation.
- My graduation felt like such a major milestone, and I feel really lucky to have shared it with you.
- Thanks for all your support over the years, both in my education and just as my friend. Having you at my graduation was the culmination of so much work for both of us, and I can't tell you how grateful I am.
Graduation Thank You Etiquette Tips
Promptly writing your thank you notes is important, but there are a few other simple graduation thank you etiquette tips to keep in mind:
- Write a note for every gift you receive, even if it's not worth a lot in terms of money. Consider help with planning your open house or other forms of support a gift.
- It's better if thank you notes are handwritten. In this age of digital communication, a handwritten thank you note is unusual and will be noticed and appreciated by the recipient.
- However, if you are unable to send out a handwritten note through the mail, a text or email thank you is better than no thank you at all.
- While it's nice to send a thank you note if you get a personal message or thoughtful card for graduation, don't send a thank you note for someone else's thank you note.
Thank You Notes Are a Simple Gesture That Means a Lot
Your graduation thank you notes serves an important purpose: it lets people know how much you appreciate them. This is not small thing, since relationships are important in your future education and career (plus in life in general). Taking the time to write a note is a simple gesture that means a lot.