10 Graduation Essentials To Avoid Commencement Boredom

All Justin Timberlake memes aside, May brings one of the most important events of every student’s life: graduation. After years of waking up early for that 8:00 A.M. lab and getting locked out of your dorm, you’re finally ready to say goodbye! All that’s left is to get through miles of traffic and find your seat with your fellow graduates. Sounds easy enough, right?


No one tells you that you’re going to sit in your chair for hours listening to speeches about accomplishments and future careers. Need to use the bathroom? Good luck getting past your whole graduating class.

Here are 10 essential items you can bring to your college graduation in order to avoid commencement and for ceremony survival.

Small Bag


This one is easy for the ladies, but guys can do this too. You’re going to need something to hold the things on this list, after all. If you’re really on top of your game, you can even try sewing pockets into your graduation gown (as long as it’s not rented!). Now you’re ready for the rest of the list.



Don’t pull out a bag of chips. You want the quiet snacks, like gummies, trail mix, or chocolate. No one wants to hear the tell-tale sounds of a bag of chips and the crunching that follows. Regardless of how bored you may be, it’s still an important event. Be polite and try to bring extra. Or you could do a last “f*ck you” to the classmates that woke you up at 2:00 A.M. to bang by not sharing. Either way!

Portable Charger


Your phone will die. I repeat. Your phone will die. Between taking selfies with your classmates, checking the time, and posting on social media, your phone battery is bound to suffer. Most portable chargers are affordable and are small enough to hide under your grad gown. See if you can get one before the big day.



Even if your university says they’ll provide water, bring some anyway. Chances are, they’ll run out faster than you can say “free.” Personally, I wanted to bring coffee but I would have finished it within the first ten minutes. If you’re seated next to your friends, you can even make a drinking game out of commencement. Sure, it’s less fun without alcohol, but it’s better than nothing.

Bobby Pins


A graduation cap’s best friend. It doesn’t matter if you’re  a girl or a guy. These suckers will make sure your cap stays in place until it’s time to toss it in the air. During my graduation, there were two girls next to me who desperately tried keeping their caps on while it hailed. Yes. It hailed in May. Keep some extras with you in case some fall out. It’s a nightmare trying to find them once you lose them.



I’m starting to see these more often lately. These are a great way to keep yourself occupied if you don’t want to constantly use your phone. Fidget cubes are also pretty handy if you want to stop checking the time every ten minutes.



I kid you not. Someone was watching YouTube during my graduation without headphones. I know you’re bored, but be considerate. If you’re going to listen to music or watch videos, use headphones. Better yet, use the small ones. People will know you’re listening to music, but it won’t be as obnoxious as wearing the large ones. It’s still a ceremony after all. There are some people that really look forward to hearing their names during graduation. Respect your classmates today of all days. They’ve earned it.

Handheld Games


I’ll be the first to shamefully admit that I brought my 3DS to my graduation. What? I was so close to beating Pokemon at the time and I couldn’t wait. If you know you’ll be bored, download some cellphone games that don’t need the internet in advance (or bring a 3DS like I did). Just remember to use those headphones I talked about earlier and try not to let the professors see. I got lucky and sat smack dab in the middle of my class. Those in the aisle seats aren’t so lucky.



For you ladies wearing five-inch heels to graduation (how do you walk?), I recommend bringing some flats. No one wants to trip on their graduation, but I’ve seen at least four girls do it in front of the Dean. In their defense, it was a really windy day. If you have to walk on grass, bring flats. Heels and turf never mix.



The old pen and paper is a classic way to kill time. Bring a small notebook where you can doodle or maybe even write some numbers down. If you have a friend a couple seats down, paper is a must for passing notes (in case your phone really died by now).

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