Bookstore introduces textbook rentals

Kevin Mitchell

Students can pay $150, or $60, $147 or $59. The choice is now theirs, thanks to a new program the Washburn University bookstore is implementing for the 2009-10 school year.

The bookstore is beginning a book rental program this year, presenting students with an opportunity to save money. The program will offer four textbooks initially, with more textbooks to be added to the rental inventory in the future.

Instead of paying $150.00 for a new “Introduction to Biology” book or $112 for a used book, students can now rent the book for $60. A brand new “Intermediate Algebra” textbook will cost students $147.65, a used book will cost $110.75, but a rented book will cost $59 for a semester. Also available for rental are “College Algebra” and “An Invitation to Wellness.”

“I wish they had book rental when I was a student,” said former Washburn student Chad Lacey, “that could have saved me a ton of cash.”

To participate in the program, students select the eligible books from the bookstore, based on availability. If rental books are chosen, the student must present their Washburn identification card and sign the terms of agreement for rental. When the semester has ended, students will return the rented books to the university bookstore. The books must be in comparable shape to the time of purchase, and must not have excessive damage.

“We know textbooks cost too much and we’re always looking for ways to save students money,” said Kay Farley, Washburn bookstore director.

In addition to the book rental program, there are some other ways for students to save a buck. Books purchased in advance include a 5 percent discount. Students can either buy their books online, or fill out a pre-order form that is available in the bookstore. Students can also sign up for e-mail alerts in the “Events that Matter” newsletter through the university bookstore at The newsletter sends students information about bookstore and union events, secret sales, textbook buyback and other bookstore news. There are currently more than 1,100 students signed up for the newsletter.

Along with potentially saving money on books and merchandise, patronizing the Washburn bookstore directs profits back into the university coffers, as opposed to supporting companies that don’t directly invest in the university.

Textbooks go on sale in the bookstore Aug. 3, and the last day for a refund is Aug. 28.