Volume 47, Number 16 - June 14, 2010

About the Reporter

Mark Pulaski
Mark Pulaski
Wolfson Campus Bureau Chief / A&E Editor

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Picture of bookstore
New option aimed at putting money back in students' pockets will be implemented at Miami Dade College this fall semester. PHOTO BY AKEEM BRUNSON/FALCON TIMES STAFF

Students now able to rent books; save money

By Mark Pulaski

One of the biggest headaches college students face is the high cost of textbooks.

Miami Dade College students might be getting some relief soon thanks to a program aimed at leaving students with more cash in their pockets.

The Follet Corporation, which operates almost 900 college bookstores nationwide, is implementing its Rent-A-Text program at all eight MDC campuses beginning this fall.

The program will save students at least 50 percent on the retail value of books, according Omar Betts, district director for all MDC bookstores. Other schools such as Florida State University and St. Petersburg College have successfully used the project for several years now.

Betts said the program is at the forefront to make higher education more affordable.

“We don’t compete, we lead,” Betts said. “The rest follow.”

In order to participate in the program students must go through a registration process, much like they would at any movie-rental outlet. Students visit the website www.rent-a-text.com and provide some basic information such as school name, the student’s name and their e-mail address.

A valid credit card is used as collateral, and then students can walk into the bookstore at any MDC campus and pick up the materials they need.

Students can make notes or highlight small sections as if they had purchased the book. Water damage, missing pages and written obscenities will not be tolerated and students in that case would be responsible for the full cost of the book.

If at any time a student decides they want to keep the book, they can convert it over to a sale and pay the remainder of the retail value.

The thought of saving money has many students across campus eagerly anticipating the arrival of the program.

“The books are expensive,” said Mimose Jean, 27, an early childhood education major. “I’m only going to use it for that semester and then it’s going to collect dust in my closet…it’s good to re-think and re-use.”

The program is not limited to physical rentals. The Follet Corporation also offers a digital text program through the website www.cafescribe.com. Once registered, students can rent and purchase books, as well as share notes and essays with other students from other schools across the country.

“Bringing affordability to course materials is something that has been voiced out by students for years,” said Albert Torres, bookstore director at MDC’s Kendall Campus. “We're just very excited. We know that it’s going to provide students with viable options that will make the price of textbooks and education more affordable and we’re glad we can partake in that.”

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Miami Dade College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate and baccalaureate degrees.
Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Miami Dade College.
Miami Dade College is an equal access/equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, marital status, age, religion, national origin,
ethnicity, pregnancy, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, or genetic information.
Contact the Office of Director, Equal Opportunity Programs, ADA and Title IX Coordinator, at 305.237.2577 for assistance.