Barnes & Noble, Inc., will be replacing Follett Higher Education Group as Emory’s new bookstore provider this fall.
The Barnes & Noble Collegiate Superstore, which will consolidate the main bookstore, medical bookstore and the Druid Hills Bookstore on Emory’s campus, will also have a location on the Oxford campus. The transition will begin Oct. 1.
A new three-story location will open on Oxford Road next to the Boisfeuillet Jones Center in summer 2010. The bookstore will house the nation’s largest Starbucks Café on a college campus, according to Alex Kappus, Student Government Association (SGA) president.
Bruce Covey, senior director of Campus Life Technical Services and bookstore liaison, said the new bookstore will be a casual place where students can “go in and study, hang out in the café, pick up a couple of books.”
“We want to integrate the bookstore with students’ lives a lot more, which was difficult to do in so tight of a space; I think that students felt like they had to go in and get out,” Covey said.
Covey said the switch was prompted by the construction of the new bookstore because it served as a good time for change.
Senior Vice President and Dean of Campus Life John Ford said that Barnes & Noble’s vision to expand the bookstore fell in line with Emory’s desire to put the three bookstores into one building.
“There will be a significant increase in the number of titles,” Ford said. “Approximately 40,000 titles will now be housed in the three-story building, which will also include a general audience area to serve the greater Emory community.”
Covey said another driving difference is the branding vision that goes hand-in-hand with the direction in which Emory is headed. Barnes & Noble, he said, runs its own bookstore while Follett allows the University to brand its own bookstore. He said both methods work well, but the University decided to opt for Barnes & Noble in a period that he calls more “brand-conscious.”
With the increase of physical space for the bookstore, Barnes & Noble would also be expanding on sections inside the store such as the computer and technology department, Kappus said.
Barnes & Noble plans to implement creative ideas into the merchandise, such personalized apparel, Kappus said. Covey said merchandise would be expanding as well, with possibilities ranging from makeup to even underwear.
Covey said Barnes & Noble plans on continuing some of the benefits Follett offered, such as the textbook scholarships program, which contributes $10,000 a year to students who need help buying books. The new bookstore provider will also be working with the same textbook team.
Kappus said SGA is looking to create a student space similar to study areas at Cox Hall and to open a “green” café and convenience store.
Covey said the bookstore will be closed from Sept. 28 to Oct. 4.
—Contact Alice Chen