Matthew Davidson, UNF Bookstore Manager, spoke to the committee about how it’s a very exciting time. The Bookstore recently signed for 10-year agreement with the university. Remodels to the space in the Student Union are coming, including one big remodel in the summer to make the Bookstore more of a destination. New carpets and furniture will be installed, and new food, snacks, and fresh coffee choices will be added. After remodel the store will have a fresh new look, and students will want to visit more often instead if just at the beginning and end of semesters.
Follett Discover has been implemented, which means that students can find their books in myWings. 30-40% of traffic comes from myWings, which shows that students are using the tool. Follett Discover faculty adoption integration in the LMS is coming soon, but the Bookstore is waiting on IT to finalize the project. The integration will not be ready in the summer, which was the original plan. The end goal of this implementation is to fully integrate the system into the Canvas LMS. When students log into Canvas they will be able to see and purchase their course materials without having to go to myWings or the Bookstore website. Faculty will go into Canvas to do textbook adoptions. Currently the bookstore is encouraging faculty to go with the old process until integration is complete.
How can the bookstore help reduce the cost of textbooks? Price Match has been successful with students. Rental is the best cost-saving tool available, and is heavily encouraged. About 50% of books are available for rental. Packages can keep a book from being rented, especially if they include free or online materials. The bookstore will often reach out to faculty and ask if they can do without the free or online materials, in order to allow the student a more budget-friendly option. 66% of students at UNF buy their books from the Bookstore.
Follet Discover will integrate with the Bookstore’s system to tell faculty members if something is more cost effective for their students. This will save faculty from contacting the Bookstore directly, which they currently need to do. At this time there are no options for faculty members to see a cumulative cost for all materials in a particular course, but the Bookstore will keep this suggestion in mind for future enhancement.
The Bookstore works with athletics for the color out games to provide shirts. Additionally they have asked students what they want in the store, and as a result the Bookstore now provides Sector 9 skateboard supplies. The Bookstore recently became Apple certified and now carries iPads, MacBooks, headphones and other proprietary accessories. The Bookstore doesn't make much money from the Apple products, but their presence is a major draw to get people in the store.
As far as uniform wear goes, OspreysGear.com began about a year ago due to Athletics wanting to buy branded materials on an as-needed basis. Items are customizable and will ship directly. The Bookstore is working on expanding this to include non-athletic departments, so all department logos will be available and faculty can order their own gear: shirts, stationary, etc. online with a click of the button. The Bookstore is hoping to unroll that expansion for academic departments in a couple months.
The Bookstore’s Text Manager position is currently vacant, but should be filled next week. They hate to order and sell books that aren't used. Faculty members should contact the Bookstore to discuss textbook options. Follett Discover will give faculty members far more options in the near future.