white coat ceremony

16 Thoughtful White Coat Ceremony Gifts Guide

Written by: Adaora Ezike, MPH
Reviewed by: Kristine Thorndyke

We have compiled a list of 15 thoughtful white coat ceremony gifts that will demonstrate how proud you are of the new healthcare professional! Read on for some thoughtful and fun gift ideas and you’ll be sure to find one that fits the recipient perfectly.

White Coat Ceremony Gift Ideas

1. Shadow Box for White Coat
2. First White Coat Hanger
3. Customized Necklace
4. Dog Heartbeat Necklace
5. Dog Paw Print Necklace
6. RN Nurse Pin
7. Bronze Dr. Who Pocket Watch
8. Stethoscope Pendant Necklace
9. Prescription Shot Glasses
10. Prescription Insulated Travel Mug
11. Flower Bouquet
12. Comfy Pair of White Sneakers
13. Matching Pair of Socks
14. Dermatologist Card
15. Customized Bobblehead
16. Customized Padfolio

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Shadow Box for White Coat

Gifting a healthcare worker with a way to cherish their memory of the white coat ceremony is a gift that keeps on giving. With a simple black wooden finish and padded linen fabric interior, this shadow box provides the perfect place to frame the white coat worn in the ceremony. Every time they see it, they will be reminded of the special day and that iconic rite of passage they took into the healthcare industry. 

I especially feel that this gift will show that you did your research into the significance of this event and the value placed on this first new white coat.

What we like:

  • A great way to display their hard work
  • An affordable, yet thoughtful gift

What we don’t like:

  • Depth of the shadow box not as deep as expected

Best for: Anyone looking for a memorable gift, this could be a great option.

Best Overall
6x20 Inch Linen Lined Shadowbox 6x20 Inch Linen Lined Shadowbox

This shadow box makes a great place to hold the white coat for a White Coat Ceremony!

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03/15/2024 08:14 am GMT

First White Coat Hanger

Another thoughtful white coat ceremony gift idea for that special healthcare worker in your life is this unique personalized hanger for their white coat. Made from solid wood and with options to customize the text, this hanger is the perfect place to hang that very special first white coat and all the memories that go alongside it. 

What we like:

  • Suitable for any white coat ceremony
  • Customizable for the recipient
  • Beautiful cursive design of the wires

What we don’t like:

  • The hangers can be a bit bendy

Best for: Those of you who want to provide a gift to celebrate the occasion, whether that be for a veterinary, pharmacy, nursing or any other healthcare white coat ceremony. 

Best Customized Gift
First White Coat Hanger First White Coat Hanger

Customized specifically for healthcare workers, this white coat hanger protects your coat in style!

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03/15/2024 08:19 am GMT

Customized Necklace

This necklace is a slam dunk as a gift as well as card that is extremely of-the-moment for a white coat ceremony. The card that comes with this beautiful disk jewelry is specifically created for white coat ceremony moments.

The necklace can be customized with a letter and a symbol. Additionally, you can personalize the card that comes with the necklace, making it that much more customized.

Best for: A new female doctor who loves dainty gold or silver jewelry.

White Coat Ceremony Gift Necklace - Etsy White Coat Ceremony Gift Necklace - Etsy

This is a super cute, dainty necklace that is a great gift with the customization!

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Rosa Vila Dog Paw Heartbeat Necklace in Rose Gold Tone

Rosa Vila’s dog paw heartbeat necklace helps to showcase that love felt for animals, perfect as veterinary white coat ceremony gifts for all those female vets starting out. The piece features a small heart pendant, a heartbeat and a paw print, and comes attached to a chain with a lobster clasp for easy wear.

Delicate and dainty, this necklace makes a statement for any new vet with its unique, animal-inspired design and wearability. 

What we like:

  • Versatile – can be used to dress up or down for any occasion
  • Especially catered to new veterinarians

What we don’t like:

  • Doesn’t come in a jewelry box

Best for: Anyone after a meaningful gift for that special vet in your life. Give it to them before the veterinary white coat ceremony, and they can dress up their first white coat with the perfect accessory!

Best for Vet White Coats
Rosa Vila Dog Paw Heartbeat Necklace Rosa Vila Dog Paw Heartbeat Necklace

This makes a cute gift for a veterinarian white coat ceremony and comes in rose gold, silver, or gold tone.

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03/15/2024 08:14 am GMT

Related: 20 Awesome Medical School Graduation Gifts

Rosa Vila Dog Paw Print Necklace

Another jewelry option that makes a statement for a vet’s white coat ceremony is Rosa Vila’s dog paw print necklace in silver-tone. More simple in design than the previous necklace, this piece features a small cut-out paw print dog pendant on a chain with a lobster clasp for easy closure.

Also dainty and delicate, this necklace could be worn alone or paired with other necklaces as a layering piece.

What we like:

  • Unique
  • Simple yet dainty
  • Could be worn to any occasion, day or night

What we don’t like:

  • You have to buy a jewelry box separately

Best for: Anyone struggling to find a precious veterinary white coat ceremony gift to celebrate this momentous occasion. The simplicity of this design means it could be worn every day to veterinary school, as well as to accessorize the white coat on the big day! 

Great for Vets
Rosa Vila Paw Print Necklace Rosa Vila Paw Print Necklace

Another beautiful necklace that makes the perfect white coat gift for a new veterinarian.

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03/15/2024 08:19 am GMT

EMI Registered Nurse Pin Set

Coming as a two-item pin set, the gift includes a Registered Nurse (RN) Caduceus pin and RN round emblem pin. Gold plated, professional-looking and with plenty of detail, these pins make the perfect accessory to that first nurse’s white coat. 

What we like:

  • Great quality
  • Can be pinned on the new nurse’s white coat immediately
  • Looks even better in real life

What we don’t like:

  • On the cheaper side

Best for: Those after nursing white coat ceremony gifts, this set of pins could be the perfect keepsake. They can be pinned on to the white coat for the ceremony itself, making it even more special. 

Best Gift for RNs
RN Caduceus and Round Emblem RN Caduceus and Round Emblem
$11.99 $10.99

This 2-pin RN set features gold plating and is very high quality for the low price.

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03/15/2024 08:24 am GMT

Learn more about the Nurse Pinning Ceremony

Vintage Bronze Doctor Who Pocket Watch with Necklace 

When you picture someone in a white coat, a pocket watch always seems to spring to mind. This unique bronze Doctor Who themed pocket watch comes with two chains, one 30cm in length and one 80cm, giving the recipient options with how to wear it.

The gift set also comes with a Doctor Who inspired dome pendant necklace, attached to a 50cm long chain. 

What we like:

  • Both the pocket watch and pendant come inside a gift box
  • Mixed sizes of chains for recipient to choose from
  • The watch comes with batteries

What we don’t like:

  • Pocket watch is smaller than expected
  • Maybe not something to be used every day

Best for: Anyone after unique yet fun white coat ceremony gift ideas. This pocket watch could be a novel addition to the white coat.

Fun for Dr. Who Fans
Vintage Bronze Dr. Who Quartz Pocket Watch Vintage Bronze Dr. Who Quartz Pocket Watch

This vintage Doctor Who themed pocket watch comes with a necklace chain to be worn as a necklace or as a keychain.

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03/15/2024 08:24 am GMT

Rose Gold Heart and Stethoscope Pendant Necklace

Perfect for a nursing white coat ceremony gift, this rose gold necklace comes with a heart and stethoscope pendant fixed on to it. Made from copper and with an adjustable chain length, this necklace is a piece of jewelry that could be worn by nurses to both their white coat ceremony and to school or work. 

What we like:

  • Pendant is a good shape and size
  • The necklace comes with a personalized nursing gift card 

What we don’t like:

  • The chain is on the short side
  • Not as well made as other necklaces on the market

Best for: Those looking for something to glam up a nurse’s white coat!

Best Stethoscope Necklace
Silver Stethoscope Necklace Gift for Women Silver Stethoscope Necklace Gift for Women

A gorgeous stethoscope necklace, this piece will appeal to any jewelry lover!

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03/15/2024 08:29 am GMT

Related: 13 Best Books for Doctors 7 Aspiring MDs!

Prescription Pill Bottle Shaped Shot Glasses

Looking to inject some humor into the white coat ceremony occasion? This set of three prescription pill bottle-shaped shot glasses could be the perfect gift. Holding 2 ounces of liquid, these novelty shot glasses could be used for all the post white coat ceremony celebrations, as well as potential other occasions along the medical school journey. 

What we like:

  • Funny gift for those who like to host or party
  • Good quality for the price

What we don’t like:

  • Quite bulky

Best for: Anyone after an idea for pharmacy white coat ceremony gifts. Funny yet still thoughtful, these shot glasses will no doubt be met with a smile.

Best Gag Gift
Big Mouth Toys Prescription Pill Bottle Shaped Shot Glass Set, 3-Pack Big Mouth Toys Prescription Pill Bottle Shaped Shot Glass Set, 3-Pack
$14.99 ($5.00 / Count)

This is a great, affordable gag gift for an upcoming white coat ceremony.

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03/15/2024 08:34 am GMT

Related: What to Wear to Your White Coat Ceremony

Spoontiques Prescription Insulated Travel Mug

For Coffee Lovers
Spoontiques - Insulated Travel Mug - Prescription Coffee Cup Spoontiques - Insulated Travel Mug - Prescription Coffee Cup

Caffeine.. just what the doctor ordered! This is a perfect gift for the coffee loving nurse or doc in your life.

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03/15/2024 08:09 am GMT

Another gift with a sense of humor attached is this prescription insulated travel mug. Insulated for both hot and cold beverages and made with a stainless steel lining, this travel mug is more than just a funny white coat ceremony gift, it is a practical gift for anyone on the go. 

What we like:

  • It has a handle, making it easy for on-the-go doctors
  • The prescription label is humorous
  • Effective insulation 

What we don’t like:

  • Not leakproof
  • Not dishwasher safe

Best for: Those of you after pharmacy white coat ceremony gifts or gifts for any healthcare professional. This travel mug ticks both the funny and practical boxes, as well as being thoughtful!

Flower Bouquet 

Best Last-Minute Gift
Benchmark Bouquet Flowering Fields Benchmark Bouquet Flowering Fields

A tried and true way to say thanks, this flower bouquet is beautiful and personal.

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03/15/2024 08:34 am GMT

Although not specifically catered to a white coat ceremony, flowers are always a great go-to gift for nearly any occasion! These flowers from Benchmark Bouquets will ship overnight if orders are placed before 10PM Monday-Thursday. If, however, you’re shipping over the weekend, you’re going to be out of luck, as no deliveries take place Friday-Sunday.

What we like:

  • Overnight shipping
  • Cheaper alternative to popular flower delivery companies
  • Comes with vase

What we don’t like:

  • No weekend deliveries
  • Flowers ship in bud form (bloom days after arrival)

A Pair of White Sneakers

Best Sneakers for Healthcare Workers
Men’s Tree Dasher 2 | Allbirds Men’s Tree Dasher 2 | Allbirds

Comfortable and practical, a pair of white sneakers is a great choice for any professional healthcare environment! Designed to pair with the Trino Sprinters Low performance socks.

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Going along with the “white” theme, you can opt to get the future doctor a pair of Allbirds Tree Dashers. Named as #1 among Best Shoes for Doctors and Med Students, these sneakers are both comfortable for long shifts as well as good for the environment. Made with all natural and recycled ingredients, they will be appreciated by both the doctor and the planet.

What we like:

  • Made from breathable eucalyptus tree
  • Machine washable
  • Merino wool cushioning

What we don’t like:

  • No sales/promotions

Allbirds Trino Sprinter Socks

Pair with Tree Dashers
Allbirds Ankle Socks Allbirds Ankle Socks

Comfortable wool socks made from all natural resources that pair perfectly with the Allbirds Tree Dashers!

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While you’re at it, throw in a pair of these super luxurious Trino wool low-rise socks that were specially designed to fit with the Allbirds Tree Dasher. This attention to detail will really know the socks off (pun intended) of the new doc!

What we like:

Dermatologist Card

Best Gift for Dermatologists
Card for Dermatologist - Etsy Card for Dermatologist - Etsy

How cute is this card with a diagram of the skin in its white coat pocket.

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Here’s another very specific gift that is aimed specifically at dermatologists. This customizable card on Etsy allows for the addition of a customizable name tag for the new M.D. I have found this to be an extremely thoughtful gift that I have given to my own dermatologist as a thank-you.

What we like:

  • Specialized for dermatologists
  • The addition of customization with the removable name tag

Customized Bobblehead

Custom Bobbleheads Doctor Gift - Etsy Custom Bobbleheads Doctor Gift - Etsy

Gift the new doctor their very own personalized custom bobblehead in their likeness. Includes a white coat that can be customized.

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With nearly limitless customization that you can request from the seller, your doctor can have their very own bobblehead in their likeness! Include a little personalization with their name on their first white coat, and this will make the most memorable gift they’ve received!

What we like:

  • Bobblehead can be customized to look like the recipient
  • Personalized white coat feels fitting for the occasion
  • A fun way to celebrate the new doctor

Customized Padfolio

Best Professional Gift
Personalized Padfolio with Caduceus 7 X 9 | Etsy Personalized Padfolio with Caduceus 7 X 9 | Etsy

This soft faux leather padfolio can be customized - and if you message the seller directly, they're also willing to add a logo!

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This soft faux-leather padfolio is simply beautiful and makes an excellent customized gift for the new doctor or nurse.

Simply message the seller with any customizations you want – and that’s it!

What we like:

  • Customized with name and logo
  • Faux leather is soft yet affordable
  • Tons of color options and sizes

What’s a White Coat Ceremony?

white coat ceremony

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The white coat ceremony is quite possibly the most iconic rite of passage faced by students in the worlds of medicine, nursing, veterinary, pharmacy, and numerous other healthcare professions. Established back in 1993, this ritual sees students wearing their first white coats and being welcomed into the healthcare practice. It aims to provide an important emphasis on compassion and scientific excellence from the very first day of the students’ training. 

White Coat Ceremony Buying Tips

Before pressing ‘buy now’ there are a couple of things you should consider when looking into white coat ceremony gifts:

What to Look for in Gifts for the White Coat Ceremony

Buying the perfect white coat ceremony gift for that special medical professional in your life can be a little tricky. The ceremony is a rite of passage for them, and you want to make sure that you gift them something fitting for the occasion.

This could mean buying them a keepsake to help them remember and treasure the special day. Or it could be an accessory or piece of jewelry that helps to dress up their white coat. Or perhaps it’s something that injects some humor into the day. 

The trick is to ensure the gift has meaning for that special someone. This could mean something personal to the profession they’re going into, like something animal-related for veterinary white coat ceremony gifts.

Whatever you decide to buy, it’s worth thinking carefully about the individual you’re buying for and what you think they’d appreciate, even if it’s just a nice, heartfelt card.

Check out our full list of the 41 best medical school gifts

Practical or Funny? Which Makes a Better Gift?

When it comes to white coat ceremony gift ideas, you could go either way. Going down the practical road means that the gift will probably get used over and over again. It also might lead to something that becomes a fond memory of the special occasion.

Heading off on a funny path means the gift could provide some humor and bring a smile to the faces of the recipients at the time of receiving it. It might also bring some light relief further down the line, after a long and stressful day at school or work. 

Whether you end up going for practical, funny, or both, one is not necessarily better than the other. The key to success when buying a gift for a white coat ceremony is making sure the gift is thoughtful. 

White Coat Ceremony Gifts FAQ

How much should I spend on a white coat ceremony gift?

The gifts in our list cost anywhere from $12 to $100. The cost of the gift is irrelevant, as long as you gift something that seems thoughtful and relevant to his or her interests or achievements.

Can I gift money at a white coat ceremony?

A card with some crisp bills or a check are always appreciated by new doctors and nurses alike! This makes a practical gift that is always appreciated by students facing repayment of large student loans.

What should parents wear to a white coat ceremony?

Parents should certainly be dressed professionally for the ceremony, especially considering how important this event is for your child! A shirt and tie (no need for a sport coat) for a man and dress or slacks/blouse for a woman will suffice.

Final Thoughts

We’re sure that whatever you end up buying as a gift to celebrate that special someone’s white coat ceremony, they are bound to appreciate the kind gesture. At the end of the day, everyone loves to be given a gift!

If you’re still reading this and feeling a bit overwhelmed by the gift ideas, then we recommend opting for the Shadow Box, which always makes a thoughtful and relevant gift for their white coat ceremony.