The bookstores at FRCC’s various campuses serve students in a multitude of ways, namely in providing students with the textbooks and other materials they will need for their classes, including picking up online orders for said materials. FRCC’s Boulder County Campus has now lost these services, as their bookstore shuttered this past spring.
Shari Browder, the Assistant Director for Auxiliary Services, said that Barnes & Noble College Division, who manages FRCC’s bookstores, “told us they needed to close the BCC Bookstore earlier this spring due to the financial losses they were incurring.” These financial losses were, according to Browder, due to the fact that “[a] majority of students do not purchase their books in the bookstore.”
After this closure, there was hope within Auxiliary Services that Barnes & Noble would provide a pop-up bookstore for the Boulder County Campus at the beginning of the fall semester as an alternative.
However, Browder mentioned that “[Barnes and Noble] let us know that they would not be able to provide a pop-up store for us. So there was never actually going to be a pop-up bookstore.” She further mentioned that “Barnes & Noble did not promise a pop-up store or other replacement.”
So why had there been hope for Barnes & Noble to set up a pop-up bookstore if they had never promised it?
Browder explained that it was due to “Miscommunication. When we closed the Barnes & Noble store, Auxiliary Services talked about having a location where the web orders could be delivered to the Boulder County Campus so students could pick them up during the beginning of the semester (this was also referred to by some as a pop-up store). There never would have been products available to sell [at this location].”
“Although the books for the Boulder County Courses are available at the WC Bookstore, we understand that it is not always feasible for the students to drive to the Westminster Campus and they also might not be able to have them shipped,” Browder explained. “The WC Bookstore and Auxiliary Services is working with those students [now] so that their books can be picked up at the Boulder County Campus during the first 2 weeks of classes.”
She mentioned, however, that a different solution was used instead for Boulder County Campus students in the end. “[We] ultimately decided to pay for the shipping fees to have the books sent directly to the students since it should arrive to the students quicker than if we transported and distributed them,” she said.
Despite paying shipping fees for students’ books and discussing alternative solutions, Browder mentioned that “[there] are no future plans to set up a bookstore at BCC.”
Photo credit: Cliff Grassmick, Boulder Daily Camera