What Do You Give a Doctoral Student?

You give them three wishes – the degree, the degree, and the degree.  In case Christmas arrives and the degree is not completed, there are some other doctorate student gift items.  


A paid DropBox subscription will maximize your space for all the data you can hold and you won’t have to worry about backing up your work.  Save as many copies as you like of your dissertation under different dates that you submit…. Just try not to be depressed looking back at the number of drafts.


Ergonomic products will help with the pain of sitting and writing for long periods of time.  These can include pads for the keyboard and mouse, a cushion for the chair, or a better chair.  


On that note, a posture corrective brace or shoulder supports are very helpful to ease discomfort from slouching at the keys.  For the really special student, a massage will also help here!  


Paperweights are extremely handy.  When books are open on a desk and stacks of articles are scattered about, you can’t have too many of these.  My favorite is a gift from a wedding party long before I dreamed of beginning a doctoral program.  It is a brightly colored Italian Murano piece of domed glass that reminds me of a close friend.


I know I’ll be going on a limb here, but what I would give a fellow sojourner… a dog.  My girl Lucy sits by my desk for every keystroke, gets me out walking, and even follows me into the kitchen for coffee.  If I were going to shift topics, (never!  I will finish!), I might hypothesize that students with dogs are more likely to graduate.  “Loneliness on the dissertation journey is recognized as a problem” might begin my introduction.  Followed by a lit review on all things Lucy.  A committee somewhere might be interested in that, maybe?


What do you want as a gift or plan to give?         

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