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Online Bookstore Lightens Load of Campus Store


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It seems that in the case of the campus bookstore, less is more.

The bookstore was once stocked with every textbook and required reading for teachers’ curriculums. Students had access to these books at any time during library hours to purchase for their classes. Since February of last year, you won’t find these textbooks here anymore.

Most students seem satisfied with the selection of items sold at the store. Junior Wei Wei thinks only two things need to be added.

“I sometimes go to the store,” said Wei Wei. “If I wanted something added, it would be fresh fruit and beer!”

According to March’s “Word on Campus,” many students ordered their books online, leaving the bookstore with a large stockpile of books they could not sell. In order to address this issue, all textbooks were removed from the store in favor of an online format. The bookstore has lightened its inventory and now focuses on other items to sell.

Betts Markle, director of Prim Library, has seen both positives and negatives with the new online format.

“When we went to an online bookstore last year, it was a great thing for the bookstore because they don’t have to carry inventory, they don’t have to keep track of these new or used books,” said Markle. “But, the downside of it is students often don’t order their books until the last minute. So, they don’t get them right away, whereas when there were books in the bookstore, they could go to their first class and then come in and buy the book and they have it. Now, they go to their class, find out what books they need and it takes two weeks for the books to get there.”

This online bookstore was started by Annamarie Jones, director of Assessment and Institutional Research Development and Alumni Relations,  as a way to address certain pain points that students were feeling at Sierra Nevada College.  From allowing student choice on prices for their books to easing the pain of store finances, the online format has helped solve issues that both students and faculty were having with the old bookstore.

With the use of the online bookstore, Jones has seen notable positive changes since taking the books off their shelves.

“The online bookstore has also allowed us to spend more time putting new products on the shelves that students want to buy,” said Jones. “We now have more space and funds that we can commit to food, beverages and general merchandise that was previously being spent to procure books.”

Without books dominating the store, employees now focuses on selling snacks, drinks and SNC branded items.

Junior Max Irving, student employee of the campus store, believes the students are enjoying the service provided by the store.

“I feel that we offer great prices for our food and the students seem to enjoy the prices and selection of food offered,” said Irving.

But even with this positive outlook on the campus store, Irving thinks some additions to the store will help improve sales.

“I think a grab and go section would offer students a better selection of food and meal substitutes,” said Irving.

 

PHOTO BY JAMIE WANZEK

THE CAMPUS STORE also offers a variety of snacks. drinks and SNC themed apparel.

 

PHOTO BY JAMIE WANZEK

ALEX HASTINGS  can be seen working at the Campus Store

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The student news site of Sierra Nevada College
Online Bookstore Lightens Load of Campus Store