Graduation card from Greenvelope

Graduation is such a momentous occasion that’s worth celebrating. For the new grad, it’s a time to think about the next steps in their career or life journey. For you, it’s a chance to encourage them and congratulate them on a job well done. With this list of graduation card ideas, you’ll find inspiration for wording and quotes, plus some of our favorite online card designs that you can personalize and send in moments. 

When to Send a Graduation Card

Graduations can take place for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the most common occasions to send a graduation card to someone you care about. 

High School Graduation

Graduating high school is an exciting moment. It’s when teenagers truly begin to forge their own path in life — by heading off to college, entering the workforce, or embarking on something entirely different. Celebrate your senior’s graduation by sending a heartfelt graduation card. You can wish them well on the next step of their journey, or recount some of your favorite memories of their high school years. 

College Graduation

College graduation is perhaps the occasion when most people send graduation cards. With a college degree earned, your grad is about to take some exciting new steps into their career or towards their goals. 

You might get a graduation announcement through the mail or by email from the grad or their parents. You might also receive a digital invitation to their graduation ceremony — especially if it’s being held remotely or there’s a virtual version this year. Once you receive the announcement or invitation, prepare a sweet college graduation card to congratulate the college graduate.

Other Types of Graduation

High school and college aren’t the only graduation moments. Get creative and create an adorable graduation card for a little one who’s finishing preschool, or send a congratulations card to a friend who’s at the end of their vocational training program. You can even send a congratulatory card to someone who has “graduated” from the workforce and is retiring. Some of the best graduation card ideas are the ones that celebrate those non-traditional milestones. 

Graduation Card Ideas: Graduation Messages and Wording Inspiration

graduation card ideas: Smiling new graduate hugging her mother while holding her diploma

Looking for inspiration on what to say inside your graduation card? Here are some of our favorite graduation card ideas when it comes to wording and quotes. 

Celebrate Their Achievement

Send your congratulations to the new grad with a short but sweet message like these. 

“Congratulations on graduating, ______! We’re so excited to watch what you do next.”

“Sending our congratulations to you, ______. We know how challenging the ______ program can be and we’re so proud of everything you’ve achieved.”

“You’re a new grad — It’s time to celebrate!”

“Congratulations on completing your degree, ______! You’ve made so much progress and we’re delighted to hear you’re now off to ______ to ______.”

“Graduation caps off to you! Here’s to the shiniest new grad in ______.”

Share Words of Wisdom

Give your grad a little of your hard-earned wisdom in your greeting card to help them feel prepared for the journey ahead.

“Life is full of exciting adventures, and we’re so happy a new one is about to begin for you.” 

“It’s the end of one chapter, but another begins. Keep your spirit of learning and curiosity wherever you go.”

“Congratulations on your graduation, ______! May this mark not the end of something, but the point of transformation where you bloom and grow.”

“Go into the world and explore it to its fullest. Live life with passion, love, and a never-ending sense of wonder.”

“What you’ve learned so far will prepare you for what’s ahead, but never stop learning.”

Share Inspiration for the Future

Encourage your graduate to go out and face the world with confidence with these inspirational words and messages. 

“With your ______ degree, you’ll go on to do great things. Remember all that you’ve learned and use your energy to inspire a new generation of ______.”

“The future looks bright for you, ______! Best wishes from all of us on your special day.”

“Congratulations on graduating from ______. We know you’ll go on to do great things.”

“The world is about to meet one of the most promising young ______ they’ve ever seen. Go and show them what you can do!”

“College is over! Those late nights were worth it! Time to work on those exciting plans you had to ______, ______, and ______.”

Offer Support and Encouragement

Give your grad some extra love and support with these messages that are perfect after a challenging year. 

“We know it’s been a challenging year for you, ______. That’s why we’re so proud of everything you’ve achieved and all your hard work. Congratulations on graduating from ______!”

“Graduation can feel like you’re leaving something behind, but know that we’re always here to love and support you — whatever step you take next.”

“Congratulations, new grad! We know some people have their life planned out already, but figuring things out is the exciting part — so don’t feel any pressure!”

“We’re so proud of you, ______. Things might feel strange now, but you’ll soon find your feet and know exactly where you’re meant to be.”

“Congrats on graduating from ______! That degree program is so challenging, and with everything you’ve faced this year your results were amazing.”

Recount a Memory

Share some fond memories as the new grad embarks on their next steps after graduation.

“Remember when you said you wanted to be a ______ when you were ______? Now you’re almost there! Congratulations!”

“I remember my own graduation and how it was the start of something exciting. I hope this moment is the same for you.”

“Happy graduation day! It feels like only yesterday you said you’d be starting ______.”

“Remember junior year when you said ______? Feels like a lifetime ago! Congrats on starting your journey to become a ______.”

“Congrats on your big day, ______! From ______ to ______ just like that.”

Add a Famous Quote

Quotes are among the best graduation card ideas. Offer up an inspiring quote from one of the greats. 

“Your life is your story, and the adventure ahead of you is the journey to fulfill your own purpose and potential.” — Kerry Washington

“Follow your fear.” — Tina Fey

“Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” — Steve Jobs

“Intelligence plus character — that is the goal of true education.” — Martin Luther King Jr.

“Always aim high, work hard, and care deeply about what you believe in.” — Hillary Clinton

Celebration From Afar

Send your congratulations to a family member or friend from wherever you are in the world, or if you can’t make it to their graduation ceremony. 

“We’re sad that we can’t be with you today as you graduate, but you’re always in our hearts. Congratulations on your graduation.”

“We’re so proud of you graduating, ______! Even though we can’t join you in ______ to celebrate, know that we’re toasting you from over here.”

“Cheers to our favorite grad in ______! Wear your cap and tassel with pride for us.”

“Graduation might look a little different than how you expected, but the amount of pride we feel for you is just the same. Congratulations on your graduation. We can’t wait to see you again soon.”

“Sending you huge congratulations and good wishes, all the way from ______!”

Graduation Card Ideas: Designs We Love

Ready to create an amazing grad card for someone special? Here are some of our favorite graduation card ideas.

There are plenty of templates for you to customize, so you can DIY your own and even re-style one of these designs or a birthday card design if you like. Plus, you can add a gift card as a graduation present!

Big Congrats! Card

graduation card ideas: BIG Congrats! Card by Greenvelope

Design: Signature Greenvelope

How fun is this big congrats card? We love the color gradient and how easy it is to fit a personalized message on the front of the design. It’s a perfectly simple option that’ll make your loved one smile.

Sending Positive Vibes Card

graduation card ideas: Sending Positive Vibes Card by Greenvelope

Design: Signature Greenvelope

Send those positive vibes with this fun, retro-inspired card that feels fresh and modern. Keep this pastel version or try it with bolder hues. You can also customize it with your own color options for something truly personalized. 

Blooming Congratulations Card

graduation card ideas: Blooming Congratulations Card by Greenvelope

Design: Signature Greenvelope

This blooming congratulations card is simple yet impactful with its bold typography and fun color choices. The reverse of this design features lots of space for you to write a sweet congratulations message to the new grad. 

Modern Cheers Card

Modern Cheer Invitation by Greenvelope

Design: Signature Greenvelope

Send your congratulations from wherever you are with this modern cheers card. Although this example features an invitation to a retirement party, it’s super-easy to personalize the design for your favorite graduate. 

Scripted Congratulations Card

Scripted Congratulations Card by Greenvelope

Design: Signature Greenvelope

We adore the elegance of this scripted congratulations card. The text is fully customizable, so you can send your personalized well wishes on the front. Bonus: there’s plenty of room for a longer message on the back. 

Send Your Congratulations With These Graduation Card Ideas

Let your grad know you’re thinking of them and wish them well with these graduation card ideas. Greenvelope makes it easy to find (and personalize) the perfect design so you can send your message of love and support. Consider sending a digital card for a simple yet thoughtful way to encourage the new grad on their next chapter.