The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Wednesday August 10th

Under new management, community reacts to Student Stores changes

The UNC Women's Tennis team defeated Eastern Tennessee State University on Friday the 13th in the NCAA Tournament and advanced to play Northwestern on Saturday.
Buy Photos The UNC Women's Tennis team defeated Eastern Tennessee State University on Friday the 13th in the NCAA Tournament and advanced to play Northwestern on Saturday.

Barnes & Noble College began managing the historically University-owned store on July 1. Since the company privatized the store, there are new prices, policies and coffee.

Senior Kayce Scinta, a Carolina Covenant scholar, said when she first heard about the changes she was upset because she didn’t see the benefit of privatizing the stores, but now she’s glad the new store will still be contributing to student scholarships.

Geography professor Altha Cravey said while she was not surprised Student Stores was privatized, she is disappointed. She said she hoped the UNC leadership on campus would stand up for the stores.

“The Student Stores privatization was done in the name of students, but I don’t think it serves students in the short term or the long term,” Cravey said.

Cravey said she doesn’t feel as loyal to the store under the new management.

“I work at a University because I don’t want to work at a corporation and I don’t want to see the University — particularly this one that I love and I have given my professional career to — I don’t want to see it become a corporation,” Cravey said. “That’s not the reason I work here.”

Cravey said Student Stores represented a meeting place where students could share ideas.

“What I think has been lost is a place that took more than 100 years to develop — a really intellectual and scholarly place,” she said.

Library science and journalism professor Paul Jones said he was disappointed when he recently went into Bull’s Head Bookshop looking for a book by Thomas Wolfe and was guided to titles by Tom Wolfe instead.

“My fear which was worn out in my early visit there was that we were sacrificing long-term efficacy for short term efficiency,” Jones said.

Davis Library employee Jennie Clements said she hasn’t seen many people in the Bull’s Head Bookshop since Barnes & Noble College began managing the store.

“It seems like the employees have disappeared,” Clements said. “The University employees have gotten screwed — (they) seem to mostly be filtering out.”

Jones said he doesn’t see the Barnes & Noble College management making enough effort to make the new Student Stores embody a unique culture.

“The bookstore is a place where you go not to just efficiently get a book — because if you wanted that you could just do it from Amazon, which is why vanilla bookstores are dying,” Jones said.

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