University of the Ozarks officials are reimagining the campus bookstore in order to streamline the learning materials process, provide expanded inventory and offer additional programming.
The University will take over management of the campus store beginning this summer. Valerie Hardesty will continue as the manager of the store and it will be housed under the University’s Office of Enrollment and Marketing.
Though the campus store will not change its physical location, there are numerous changes planned to enhance the student experience, beginning in the Fall 2019 Semester.
“With the University managing the campus store, we believe we can make the distribution of books and learning materials much easier and more efficient,” said Reggie Hill, vice president for enrollment and marketing. “We will also be able to provide more diversity in apparel and other items and we can offer new programs and events. It will enhance the entire student-campus store engagement.”
One of the major enhancements includes a partnership with eCampus as the University’s new textbook provider through their ALL Access learning materials program. Under this program, students will be provided with all of their course materials a week before classes begin each term. An annual learning materials fee ($1,000) will cover the cost of all course materials, including books, access to online learning platforms (when added by faculty), open-educational resources and all course fees, with the exception of individual music lessons.
“We are excited to partner with eCampus to bring digital and print course materials, access to online learning platforms, and open-educational resources to our students in the fall,” said Alyson Gill, University provost. “Students will also have the ability to choose their preferred text format and have it delivered in print or digitally as a rental. This program not only underscores our commitment to accessibility, it also lowers costs for our students and ensures that they have the materials that they need on the first day of class.”
Under eCampus’ All Access program, once students register, the course materials will be reserved and individually packaged for each student based on their schedule. Students will then pick up all materials before the first day of class in the campus store. By providing course materials ahead of the first day of class, students will be better positioned to succeed while the costs of materials are decreased. eCampus will also simplify the return process by setting up a pop-up return station at the end of the semester where students can return their books.
“We are streamlining the learning experience at Ozarks as we bring textbook delivery or the learning materials themselves directly to the iPads that the students use through our Compass learning initiative,” Gill said.
Hill said that University also plans to take advantage of the campus store’s proximity to Campus Perks, the adjacent coffee shop.
“We want the store to have a seamless integration with Campus Perks and offer events like author talks, community-based book readings with local school children and open-mic type events,” Hill said. “We want it to be a place where the campus and Clarksville communities can come, have coffee and listen to authors, poets and other speakers.”
In addition, the campus store is expected to offer a wider variety of clothing, accessories and other items, according to Amy Lloyd, director of marketing.
“We will have more control over what we can carry and that will lead to more options and diversity in apparel,” said Lloyd. “We will have both local and national brands that we haven’t been able to offer before. We will also have a wider selection of books beyond those that are required for classes.”
Lloyd said the new campus store will most likely be renamed and undergo a rebranding initiative this summer.