Textbook Exchange

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College is an expensive time in many peoples’ lives. As if spending hard earned money on tuition and housing was not already enough to handle, students are also expected to buy or rent costly textbooks at the start of each semester. Finding the correct textbook at a fair price can be difficult. However, this panic and stress over textbook affordability may soon be laid to rest as the Undergraduate Student Senate is currently in the process of creating an on-campus Textbook Exchange. The idea for a Pacific University Textbook Exchange came about this past summer when Steve Klein, the USS advisor and the director of the University Center and Student Activities, suggested the idea to the USS Executive Board during a meeting. The idea was further supported after USS Executive Board members began conducting research and noticed that other universities in the area offer similar programs and services to their students. “Many schools facilitate a book exchange on their campuses and a lot of these programs are ran and supported by the student governments,” Klein said. “The intent is to help students save money. Textbooks are expensive and when you buy them new and sell them back used, you can only get a fraction of what you actually invested in them. 
For many students, renting is the best option.” The Textbook Exchange program has been approved for creation and is currently in its early planning and development stages. According to Klein, before any actual planning began on the project, the contract between Pacific’s Bookstore and Barnes and Noble was revisited to ensure the program would not break any rules and or infringe on business rights. Senior Pablo Valenzuela, USS vice president of Campus Betterment, has been working closely with senior Sean Higinbotham, USS representative for the 
Student Athletic Advisory Committee, and the rest of the Campus Betterment team to begin setting up a structure and model for the Textbook Exchange. Valenzuela, along with other members of the Campus Betterment Committee, have also been looking at and 
studying other Textbook Exchange 
programs auniversities in the area in an attempt to find what works well and what does not. “We don’t want to reinvent the wheel,” Klein said. “If there is a good program out there, we want to mirror it and maybe talk to the facilitator who is in charge of maintaining its ups and downs.” 
According to Valenzuela, the Textbook Exchange program at Pacific would ideally be a week-long event, held somewhere in the UC, at the beginning of each semester, where students could sell their textbooks at a price of their choosing or buy textbooks for their classes at lowered prices. All sales would be final and cash only. 
In addition, all transactions for the Textbook Exchange would have to take place at the UC. For the time being, the Textbook Exchange will be ran and facilitated by the USS and students will be allowed to keep all of the profit from the books they sell. For both Klein and Valenzuela, the next step in this project is to gauge student and faculty interest. 
They are also trying to find a way to combat the fact that textbooks are always evolving and coming out with newer editions. A test run for the Textbook Exchange will be held at the beginning of this year’s spring semester and all will be welcome to partake. “After the pilot run, we will come back to the table and assess how it went and try to determine whether or not there is anything we can do to make it a more successful and impactful program,” Klein said. “Then maybe we will go and hold the exchange a second time. We will have to continue to annually assess the program to ensure that everything is running correctly.”

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