SGA addressing book issue
This is the first in a series of weekly columns that do not seek to rouse undying support for the Student Government Association, but rather to inform you, the UH student body, of what is happening inside the University and how the SGA is working to make student life easier.
With this knowledge, you may be pleased with certain new developments, or you might become angry and choose to seek more answers from your elected student officials.
I would first like to address the problems students have been having with textbooks.
Textbooks will always be an issue; the problem is figuring out how to use the resources we have to make sure we are getting the best value for our money and time.
Of course, one resource at our disposal is the on-campus Barnes & Noble bookstore. We have all faced frustration in dealing with this entity, be it from high prices, loans, selection or something else.
But it is important for students to understand the process of textbook adoptions.
The bookstore does not automatically know what books are being used for each class and must rely on professors to turn in their textbook orders so the store will know what books to order. When the bookstore knows what books it needs, it buys back those textbooks from students at half of the sticker price.
According to Barnes & Noble, for every 10 percent of faculty members who turn in their book orders, students save roughly $100,000. The textbooks are then sold back to the students at 25 percent savings.
This is not to say that blame should be directed toward the faculty, but rather that lower textbook costs require the three main entities involved (students, faculty and the bookstore) to come to an understanding.
Faculty should seek to turn in their textbook orders as soon as they can, the bookstore should try to gather textbook information as soon as possible, and students should seek to be informed of whether their professor has turned in his book order and sell their textbooks back to the bookstore.
This semester, 100 percent of textbook orders were submitted to the bookstore by roughly the second week of classes.
As great a feat as this is, it does not mean the issue has been resolved; students must implore teachers to reach 100 percent earlier so that the aforementioned benefits can be accessible sooner.
Currently, the bookstore is adjusting to the textbook rental process, and more information on that issue will be offered in an upcoming column or at the next bi-weekly SGA meeting Feb. 24 in the Cougar Den at the University Center.
Reyes Ramirez is a political science and creative writing sophomore and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org