Every time I send a card to a graduate, I think about a humorous essay I read years ago by Mary Schmich titled “Advice, like youth, probably just wasted on the young.” You might know it by another name, because Baz Luhrmann turned into a song that should be a staple on graduation party playlists, “Everybody’s Free to Wear Sunscreen.” The song leaves out the first few lines of the essay, which begins:
“Inside every adult lurks a graduation speaker dying to get out, some world-weary pundit eager to pontificate on life to young people who’d rather be Rollerblading.”
So I laughed with joy the first time I got to fill out a graduation advice card because Mary is right. I was more than happy to share a few words of wisdom. I sent back “Typos matter.” It’s not profound, personal or inspirational, but it’s sound advice and I stand by it. Also, I’d proofread a couple of assignments for the grad and knew he’d get a kick out of it.
Now you can give friends and family a chance to share their hard-won wisdom by adding graduation advice cards to your celebration! You can ask them to fill out advice cards at the reception, or give them a chance to come up with the right words by sending advice cards along with the invitation. Asking them to fill out and return the cards in advance will allow you to use them in the displays honoring your grad. The cards shown above come with return envelopes, and below we have a postcard complete with a return address.
And if you’re planning a graduation party, that means you may need to come up with your own words of wisdom. Here are a few graduation advice wording ideas to get you started.
Share a memory – Maybe you witnessed a moment when the grad showed they have what it takes to succeed. Did the grad behave graciously in victory, show character in defeat or persevere to overcome an obstacle?
Write something inspirational, like “Have faith in how far you can go.”, “If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done” or “Wherever you go, go with all your heart.”
And you can always keep it brief – Call your parents. Try new things. Always keep learning. Find work you love. Get enough sleep. Enjoy the ride. Typos matter.
Featured Items: Celebrate the Grad – Graduation Advice Card, Graduation Tassel – Graduation Advice Card, Advice for the Grad – Graduation Advice Postcard, Destined for a Bright Future – Graduation Announcement