By Brian Clayton
CCC Journalism Program
BLACKWOOD – The Camden County College bookstore is a central place to purchase books for classes for an upcoming semester, but some wonder if the book prices are fair.
The Camden County College bookstore is operated by Barnes & Noble through a contract with the college. Barnes & Noble purchases textbooks from publishers and then the Camden County College bookstore sells them to the students. In addition, Barnes & Noble makes custom Camden County College faculty-designed textbooks to be sold to students.
Some other suppliers such as amazon.com sell certain books for a cheaper price than the Camden County College bookstore. However, the Camden County College bookstore has to take into account certain intangibles such as shipping, returns, editions, sell back, new vs. used, and rentals in determining the sales price, whereas amazon.com simply sells the book and then ships it out to the buyer.
Within the last few years, binder books have been an addition to the Camden County College bookstore. Binder books come in the form of loose leaf pages that students must insert into a binder. These types of books do not have resale value to the Camden County College bookstore, therefore, after a student is finished with the book, they cannot sell the book back to the store.
Binder books do have advantages. The faculty of Camden County College put together binder books in an effort to provide only the material needed for instruction. Students may buy a book that has two parts for a class but they only need part one of the book. The binder book helps save students money who would have bought the book with two parts.
David Chojnacki, director of business services at Camden County College, said Barnes & Noble gives compensation to the college for sales. “The college receives compensation, a percentage of sales, from Barnes & Noble that the College utilizes to offset expenses in its annual budget. This compensation assists the college in keeping tuition at an affordable level for students.”