Recognition Day for the Class of 2020

Recognition Day, March 18, is the day The Citadel Class of 2020 will hear the words, “The 4th Class system is no longer in effect.” The knobs have worked very hard to get to this point in the year.

Many parents have asked if there is a traditional gift to mark this milestone. While there isn’t one “have to get” item, over the years many families have given their 4th Class cadet a company t-shirt  from the campus bookstore to mark the occasion.

In the past few years an alumnus has offered a special Recognition Day t-Shirt. The sales benefit the Col Harvey M. Dick, ’53 Memorial Ring Endowment. A photo of the shirt is below and it is available on the Senior Private Etsy site. Sunday, February 20 is the last day to order this shirt.


The decision what to give a 4th Class cadet, if anything, is up to each family. What is really important is the pride they will feel in accomplishing the toughest goal they have faced to date.

Gift Ideas for Citadel Cadets and Graduates

I’ve noticed that a number of people are searching for various permutations of “gifts for Citadel cadets” lately. I have learned of some other unique gifts since an earlier post and will link to them here along with some popular sites.

Brenda Harris Tustian has a wonderful site that includes customize prints for Citadel fans. See her website , then go to “Personalized Art,” scroll down to see “A Citadel Christmas” and “Gameday Memories Citadel”

Chocolate Cadet by Christophe Artisan Chocolatier Patissier
Chocolate Cadet by Christophe Artisan Chocolatier Patissier

A fellow Citadel mom recently posted a photo of a custom-made chocolate cadet from Christophe Artisan Chocolatier – Patissier. I emailed the shop for more information and learned each Chocolate Cadet is made to order by hand. They sent a photo for me to include here.  The cadet is not on their website. You need to call the shop to order, 843-297-8674. Each Chocolate cadet is $19.95 plus applicable taxes and shipping. They require a three-day lead time if you are picking up from the shop, longer if it needs to be shipped. When my grad returns from his deployment I will definitely be placing an order.

One time that is searched for frequently are the custom-made Cadet ornaments and nutcrackers by Carolina Cadets. We have an ornament and a Summerall Guard Nutcracker. They are well made a fun to display at the holidays. Our nutcracker guards the entry foyer of our home. (She will be back online in 2015)

Carolina Cadet Nutcracker and an Army Nutcracker purchased at Target.
Carolina Cadet Nutcracker and an Army Nutcracker purchased at Target.

A great gift for a graduate is the Lifetime Membership to the Citadel Alumni Association. It is $400 for juniors and seniors, CGC students and Active Duty Students.

The Big Red flag or a company guidon is a great gift for a graduate. The Big Red flag can be personalized with the company letter and /or the graduation year. The staff of Carolina Flag and Banner are very nice to work with.

A BIg Red Flag with graduation year from Carolina Flag and Banner
A Big Red Flag with graduation year from Carolina Flag and Banner

Of course the Gift Shop on campus has a wide variety of terrific gifts for cadets and graduates. The frames for the diplomas may seem expensive, but once you price them at a framer you’ll see that the price is comparable. A popular gift for Recognition Day is a company t-shirt and window decal. Under the Alumni tab on the website are some nice gift ideas for the graduate.

For members of the Summerall Guards and alumni you can find nice gifts on their website under “Shop for Promo Apparel.” These items make great gifts for senior mentors who are a members of the Summerall Guards.

M. LaHart & Co. has a very nice selection of gift items for cadets and graduates.

I have learned that parents of Citadel cadets are very resourceful. If you have a great gift idea and are willing to share the idea with other parens, please post a link in the comments here.

The Citadel: Recognition Day and Graduation Gift ideas

Two very happy members of the Class of 2011 at the end of Recognition Day, 2008.

Four years ago after Recognition day for the Class of 2011, I was in the Gift Shop in Mark Clark Hall trying to decide on a gift for my son before we left town. While I was in front of the company t-shirt section several of his Bravo Company classmates walked in. They were there to buy themselves a company shirt. My hunch was right. After a year of being a knob buying items with your company logo on it is a right of passage for 4th Class Cadets. I threw in a company decal for good measure.

One privilege the 4th Class cadets can take advantage of is ordering food to be delivered. A gift card to their favorite would be appreciated.

You can’t really make a mistake when giving a cadet a present. They never really expect one in the first place. A few months ago I posted links to various places to find gifts for cadets in the post Finding Gifts for your Citadel Cadet.

Items from the gift shop with their company logo are great gifts for 4th Class Cadets, but any Citadel logo item is appreciated throughout their 4 years at the school.

For graduation a lasting gift is the Lifetime Membership to the Citadel Alumni Association(CAA). It is $400 for Junior and Senior cadets. The price increases to $500 the first year after graduation then it is $700 after that. The CAA also has a number of gift items for sale.

A new Lifetime member of the Citadel Alumni Association. The CAA hosts a nice luncheon and presentation ceremony the day before graduation. photo by Stanley Leary

A diploma frame is a great gift. The diploma frames at the gift shop range in price from $180 – 205 and includes the school name and/or seal. That may sound expensive, it really is the going price to have something mounted and framed.

Some parents have given a case for their seniors sword. You can find them at the gift shop or a variety of online military supply outlets.

The Citadel Gift Shop carries a nice variety of gifts and jewelry.

The online store of Carolina Cadets offers cadet themed ornaments and nutcrackers. (She is offline now but will be back in 2015)

If your cadet will be serving in a branch of the military a gift appropriate to that branch is also a good idea.

Please share your gift ideas and web links in the comment section.

Summerall Guard Nutcracker from Carolina Cadets.
Carolina Cadet Christmas ornament.