The semester is almost over and it’s not just students who have been working hard. The faculty and staff at LMU have been working just as hard to teach students, grade homework, prepare tests and more. Especially since it’s the holiday season, what better time to give a thoughtful gift? Here are five ways to express appreciation for a professor or staff member you enjoy being around.

5. Kind words

The most sincere way of showing appreciation for any faculty or staff  member at LMU would be writing to them. Whether it be an email, card or handwritten letter, it shows that you have put thought, time and effort into thanking someone. Afterward, you could also stick a gift card inside or attach it to a larger gift, but you don't have to. Writing a letter can leave a lasting impression, as it can be stored easily and read again.

4. Books

Since all faculty and staff do their best to assist you in getting a better education at LMU, it would be nice to return the favor with a book. When giving a book you should consider what a professor might like to read or attend office hours to see what’s on their bookshelf. Choosing a book as a gift is a great way of giving the gift of knowledge back to the person who has taught or assisted in your academic or personal endeavors.

3. A cup of coffee

If a teacher is shy about receiving gifts, spending time getting a drink together is the way to go. Office hours are a way to meet with the professor and get some help on academic work, but getting drinks is the best way to relax and talk freely. Getting a coffee at Starbucks or a small treat at The Habit while thanking your favorite professor or staff member is easy and shows that you appreciate them. If you want, you could also offer to pick up the tab for a small item as a gesture of gratitude.

2. Plants

Almost all faculty and staff have their own personal space, so a plant like a small succulent or holiday flowers might help decorate that place. A red poinsettia could be a good festive gift for your professor to bring home or place in their office. Otherwise, a bouquet of flowers or some roses is also a way to show appreciation for a mentor you care about. Flowers and plants both look nice and are a nice gesture to give thanks.

1. Holiday treats

It’s always nice to have food on hand to snack on. In consideration of the holiday season, a small box of cookies, candy canes or chocolates would be a tasty way to show your appreciation. There are also plenty of prepackaged holiday gift baskets to choose from. Choosing the right items shows that you have put in the work to find out what they like. The person you’re giving a holiday treat to would probably love your gift even more if it was something they enjoyed.

This is the opinion of Michael Carandang, a freshman computer science major from San Diego, California. Tweet comments @LALoyolan or email

(1) comment


Wow! such a great guideline. I hope that this will help us a lot to acknowledged our mentors in the best honorable way which I can browse to find out quality work. Mentors are the real heroes that need such appreciation and acknowledgment.

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