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Gift suggestions for new Ph.D.?
Old 04-20-2017, 07:17 PM   #1
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Gift suggestions for new Ph.D.?

DD will be finishing her Ph.D. work by the end of May, and already has a j*b lined up to start in June.

DH and I would like to get her a gift to mark the occasion, but can't seem to think of anything special. She will probably need to improve her wardrobe, but will be making plenty of money to afford to do her own shopping once she sees what's typical at her site. She will likely want a new car within a year, but that's beyond our budget.

Her sister is going to get her a nice watch. (The new Ph.D. typically wears her running watch to the lab, and fashion-plate sister is appalled.) I think the watch is a good idea -- something nice that will likely last a long time. But she certainly doesn't need two new watches.

Any ideas?
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Old 04-20-2017, 07:24 PM   #2
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What is her field and age? That will help with suggestions.
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:29 PM   #3
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What is her field and age? That will help with suggestions.


Biochemistry, age 27. Lives with her BF (engineer with a good job); their hobbies are biking, running, climbing, and backpacking.
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:39 PM   #4
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Biochemistry and biking.

How about a gift certificate for the Kreb Cycle shop?

The Kreb Cycle—your full-service bike shop serving professional racers and cyclists for over 25 years

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citric_acid_cycle
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:50 PM   #5
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What about buying the couple an 'experience' such as a guided rock climbing trip to somewhere different than where they would normally visit with a guide to teach them skills they can use on future excursions. I have a 27 year old step daughter and experiential trips are high on her list of wants.

Congrats on your daughter's accomplishments!
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:56 PM   #6
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What about buying the couple an 'experience' such as a guided rock climbing trip to somewhere different than where they would normally visit with a guide to teach them skills they can use on future excursions. I have a 27 year old step daughter and experiential trips are high on her list of wants.

Congrats on your daughter's accomplishments!
+1. Experiences are awesome
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Old 04-20-2017, 09:58 PM   #7
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If you are thinking about something related to her area of study I would ask Kathy Spindler, a bioscientist at U Michigan Medical School. She is a host at this week in virology. The best contact I could find is twiv@microbe.tv
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Old 04-21-2017, 05:09 AM   #8
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+1. Experiences are awesome


+++ Experiences are great - lifetime memories and nothing but photos to store!
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Old 04-21-2017, 05:48 AM   #9
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THIS! Very inventive/creative.... It would show her you understand the foundation of her PHD.
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Old 04-21-2017, 05:51 AM   #10
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How about a silver business card holder to go with that new Ph.D. after her name.
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:08 AM   #11
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Old 04-21-2017, 11:27 AM   #12
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Interesting topic as I also have a daughter who is graduating with a PhD next week (in the humanities so no job yet).

Its a PhD so allow yourself to go a little crazy. A few years ago I purchased a Honda Fit for her to use while in school with the understanding that I would finance it and make the payments while she was in school and she would keep the car and finish paying off the loan after graduation.

I paid the loan off a year or so ago without telling her and the car is hers or soon will be. We also plan to purchase a nice pair of earrings for her. We are paying for her sister and her nieces hotel room so they can attend the graduation (her sister is a stay at home mom so they have limited funds) and we will fund a picnic lunch for our family.

Should be a nice get together.
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Old 04-21-2017, 11:45 AM   #13
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Go to her commencement, and afterwards look her in the eye and tell her you are proud of her and why.

My guess is that will mean more to her than any present.

When I got my PhD, nobody went to my commencement since they all had the flu. I got no presents from my family; my professor/mentor gave me a mantel clock with a sweet, nicely crafted note about our time on earth being limited, and to make the best of mine, or some such thing.

I knew I had reached my goal, and that is a great feeling.
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Old 04-21-2017, 11:49 AM   #14
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my sister became a PhD in 1975, my father had said if any of us kids become a doctor. he would buy us a new Cadillac, he owned a delicatessen and had an 8th grade education, i think this was his motivation to make us stay in school. It took some convincing my father that she was a doctor just a different kind, he said ok, and when he wanted to take her to the dealership she told him no thank you, she had just l;landed an apt in Manhattan, and a car wasnt needed. They bought her the bedroom set, she died at age 49 from cancer, but when ever anyone would visit her home and compliment her bedroom furniture, she would tell them her parents bought it for her.So after that trip down memeory lane how about asking her what she might like?
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Old 04-21-2017, 02:17 PM   #15
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Thanks for the ideas...some options for DH and I to consider.

She has invited us to her oral defense and we will attend (not that we will understand it). She will not be walking at graduation because she and BF will be out of town for a race. It was her decision; as she said "I'm awarded my Ph.D. when I defend, walking at graduation doesn't mean anything""
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Old 04-21-2017, 02:22 PM   #16
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I still have pieces of jewelry that I received as gifts on significant occasions. Maybe a gold or silver bracelet or necklace that could be engraved? Something classic that would still be in style years from now? I don't wear much jewelry, but I like the pieces that have some emotional significance to me.
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:10 PM   #17
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In addition to whatever you give, maybe add a desk set like this: https://www.amazon.com/Bey-Berk-D428...y+set+scissors

Someone gave me a set like this a long time ago. It lives on my desk and I've always been reminded of that person whenever I use it.
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:11 PM   #18
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Thanks for the ideas...some options for DH and I to consider.

She has invited us to her oral defense and we will attend (not that we will understand it). She will not be walking at graduation because she and BF will be out of town for a race. It was her decision; as she said "I'm awarded my Ph.D. when I defend, walking at graduation doesn't mean anything""
I didn't attend my graduation, either. I defended my thesis (also in biochemistry, also at age 27!) in August, and the commencement ceremony was not until the following May. By that time I was settled into my postdoc across the country in Berkeley and I saw no reason to go back to MA for the ceremony. As far as I know, only a couple of my classmates actually attended commencement. Your daughter is correct, the defense is the main event.

That's great that you're attending her defense! In my department it was only attended by the defense committee, it wasn't open to guests. I don't know if I would have invited my family if that option existed for me.
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Old 04-22-2017, 05:34 PM   #19
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DD will be finishing her Ph.D. work by the end of May, and already has a j*b lined up to start in June.

DH and I would like to get her a gift to mark the occasion, but can't seem to think of anything special. She will probably need to improve her wardrobe, but will be making plenty of money to afford to do her own shopping once she sees what's typical at her site. She will likely want a new car within a year, but that's beyond our budget.

Her sister is going to get her a nice watch. (The new Ph.D. typically wears her running watch to the lab, and fashion-plate sister is appalled.) I think the watch is a good idea -- something nice that will likely last a long time. But she certainly doesn't need two new watches.

Any ideas?

https://boxology.com/collections/hobbies-careers
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