Now that spring break season is coming to an end, it’s time to start thinking about graduation! Ahhhhh! I know this time last year I was silently freaking out about the long list of things I needed to do before the big day (or days in my case). Grad photo shoots, sending announcements, planning for a grad party, figuring out what to wear underneath your cap and gown, coordinating family dinners, etc. Thinking about all of this can be very stressful on top of trying to pass your classes to actually graduate!
Coming from someone who did it all and then some, here is my Graduation Season Checklist for all of you college seniors out there. This should help give you a general time frame to work with, but feel free to make this checklist your own! Most importantly, remember that this is the most celebratory time of your college career. Enjoy it!
Late March/Early April
______ Buy your cap and gown OR start planning who you’re going to borrow your gown from.
Helpful Hint: Borrow your gown if you can and splurge on a nice diploma frame instead!
______ Book your photographer for your grad pictures. You should probably take your photos no later than mid-April so that you have enough time to send them out to family in the form of an announcement or grad party invitation.
Helpful Hint: This is also a great time to take those professional LinkedIn head shots, so remember to take a few photos with no cap in a professional top!
______ If you or your family haven’t already, book the hotel room for any visiting family members coming for graduation! Hotels book quickly around this time and you want to make sure your visiting family has a nice place to stay that’s centrally located to your school.
______ This is a great time to start looking for graduation outfits before the stress of finals hit in May. Depending on how many graduations you have and your budget you may need a couple of options.
Helpful Hint: You’ll be standing up, sitting down, and possibly in a rush day of! Make sure to get a dress (and heels) that you know you can really move in and be comfortable.
______ Send out your announcements and graduation party invites! This is super important to do because often times family and friends send back graduation money (yaaaasss!). By now you should have your grad photos back. You should send out your announcements or any grad party invites no later than two – three weeks before the graduation or event.
______ If you didn’t already decorate your cap and you still plan on doing so, now would be a good time to do it!
Helpful Hint: Think about having a grad cap decorating party with your friends! This is a fun way to get excited about graduation and get some creative ideas.
One Week Before Graduation
______ Make your after graduation dinning reservations in advance. It’s better to get this out of the way ahead of time so that you aren’t with the rush of graduates waiting in line day of.
Helpful Hint: If your family plans on paying for the entire bill, ask the restaurant if they do pre-set menus for large parties. This can really help with cost control!
______ Plan a girls night out or girls night in with your friends! You might not have as much time to hang out with friends once families start coming into town. Make sure to plan girl time before the chaos of graduation hits.
Night Before Graduation
______ Try on your outfit to make sure everything works and you’re ready for the big day!
Helpful Hint: See if you have a friend or family member that would want to come help you get ready. It’s always nice to have an extra hand for putting on that grad cap!
______ Relax and soak in those last moments of being a college student!
Let me know in the comments what has been helpful for you when navigating graduation season! I hope this was helpful for you all.
Thanks for reading,