College Store Saves Students Almost $1.9 Million in 2007-08

Published 08.20.2008

The College Store

Successful programs of The College Store saved students $1.84 million during the 2007-08 academic year, store director Matthew A. Branca has announced. While The College Store strives to keep prices affordable to studentsso they can save on all the products that are sold through the store, Brancasaid there are four specific programs where savings are tracked and calculated: Lower-priced new textbooks, a high inventory of used textbooks, and the textbook-buyback and Snap-on tool programs.

Savings on new textbooks are calculated based on the store's textbook-pricing structure being less than industry averages and standards. That pricing structure alone saved students more than $155,000. The College Store actually sells more used books than new, and Branca said used titles are priced at a 25-percent discount off the current new price. He pointed out that, because the store's new price is already lower than average, the resulting used price is lower. With the store being able to offer a large inventory of used copies, students earned an upfront savings of more than $444,500 on their textbook purchases by buying used over new.

The savings continue for students when they sell their unwanted textbooks to The College Store. The store paid students more than $648,000 for textbooks during the 2007-08 school year.

"Obviously, the ability to sell back their unwanted textbooks is one of the best services The College Store offers to all students," Branca stated.

Another money-saving program that The College Store offers comes from its partnership with Snap-On industrial tools. The College Store program saved students enrolled in the schools of Transportation Technology and Natural Resources Management more than $645,000 last year. That savings comes from the tremendous discounts students receive on their Snap-On toolkits and individual tool purchases throughout the year. Students are able to purchase program toolkits at a more-than-50-percent discount off Snap-on's full retail. In addition, The College Store has partnered with Snap-on to give full-time enrolled students in various programs the ability to special-order tools at discounts from 45 to 50 percent off the full price.

"Penn College is one of Snap-on Industrial's largest customers and, due to that status, we have been able to work closely with Snap-on to customize our program," Branca said. Tool orders are taken at The College Store.

The College Store has other cost-saving programs in place. Toolkits for all programs, as well as required individual tools and supplies that the store sells, are priced below suggested retails. The staff of the store is dedicated to helping students achieve in their chosen programs. Branca adds that the store staff pricing practices are based on making sure the student has access to the required materials at affordable prices.

"The store may not be able to compete with all other retailers on some things, but. overall, considering our pricing structures on textbooks and required supplies, I think that we are very competitive," he said.