What You Need to Know About Your UCO Textbook Rentals Amid COVID-19

The University of Central Oklahoma’s Barnes & Noble bookstore and Textbook Brokers in Edmond are implementing new social distancing measures to handle business due to novel coronavirus. 

With COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders, many businesses are challenged to find new ways of continuing their roles and operations in a limited capacity. 

UCO’s Barnes & Noble is extending its deadline for returns on textbooks rented out for the spring 2020 semester to the end of summer.

The bookstore will be emailing students with a shipping label to allow students to mail-in book returns, according to Brandi Raimondi, UCO’s Barnes & Noble manager. 

“We pay for the shipping,” Raimondi said. 

Students who have rented textbooks through Textbook Brokers in Edmond will still need to stop by the store and use the rental return drop-box for contact-free returns by their original return date. 

John Beecher, owner and manager of Textbook Brokers, said that since they are an essential business and are working daily, doing their best to facilitate distance learning. Some Textbook Brokers employees are able to work from home as well. 

“We are preparing to have a tent set up in our parking lot during finals week that will operate like a drive-thru for both rental returns and book buybacks,” Beecher said.

According to Beecher, Textbook Brokers is still working on other return options but they aren’t quite ready yet. 

Raimondi does not expect Barnes & Noble will see any drop in receiving returns, since the due date is being extended. 

However, Beecher said there is a concern that his store may see a more than normal percentage of students not returning their books.

“But we will do everything we can to work with students to make sure they have an opportunity to return their rentals,” Beecher said. 

According to Beecher, it has been more challenging to obtain rentals in some cases since Textbook Brokers’ normal way of communication with some departments was face-to-face interaction. 

Students needing to obtain textbooks for summer courses will be able to order them online and have them delivered with free shipping from both stores. Textbook Brokers will have an additional curbside pickup option, according to Beecher. 

Students ordering textbooks from Barnes & Noble can access the store through UCONNECT or the store’s website. Those ordering textbooks from Textbook Brokers can also do so through their store’s website.  

Raimondi said Barnes & Noble is preparing for a lot of online orders and they are pushing textbooks available in a digital format to students.

“We mostly miss the hustle and bustle of having students and faculty around every day,” Beecher said. “We miss being around all the people the most.” 

Both of the bookstores’ physical locations are closed until further notice.

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