“Box of Books” Program at OCC To Significantly Reduce The Cost of Textbooks and Technology for Students

Last year, less than half of Onondaga Community College’s students were able to buy their textbooks, which cost a full-time student an average of more than $1,200 per year. A partnership between OCC and Barnes & Noble College (BNC), the operator of OCC’s campus bookstore, is providing a solution. Starting this fall, the “Box of Books” inclusive access program at OCC will provide students with flat-rate, predictable pricing for textbooks and an affordable Chromebook to level the playing field.

“OCC is focused on giving students the tools they need to succeed and are committed to seeing them complete their work at OCC with as little debt as possible. Students regularly tell us their OCC education is a tremendous value, but the added cost of textbooks, the online access codes, and a computer is standing in their way. This partnership is the first-of-its-kind program with a public institution and a first step towards addressing a nationwide barrier to college completion and student success,” said OCC President Dr. Casey Crabill.

“I know first-hand the difficult financial decisions I and fellow students are forced to make on a daily basis. Each of us has to consider whether to spend the money we have on our next meal, transportation to campus, school supplies or other necessities. As the Student Trustee on OCC’s Board of Trustees I am proud to have played a critical role in bringing this program here and helping the students who will follow me in the years to come. This is like Christmas for college kids,” said Allison Guzman-Martinez, OCC Student Trustee.

“We are thrilled to partner with Onondaga to introduce the First Day™ Complete delivery of Box of Books on campus,” said Paul Maloney, Vice President of Stores, Barnes & Noble College. “This inclusive access model will support affordability, accessibility and achievement for the Onondaga campus community, by providing all course materials conveniently delivered as a bundle for students on or before the first day of class.”

First Day™ Complete is Barnes & Noble College’s inclusive access model that offers first-day-of-class access to affordable, high-quality course materials for all courses. Included as a flat-rate per semester course charge, First Day Complete provides complete support to institutions and faculty to drive collaborative academic achievement goals.

Barnes and Noble College operates 773 bookstores. Through its Barnes & Noble College and MBS Textbook Exchange segments, Barnes & Noble Education operates 1,453 physical and virtual bookstores across the U.S., serving more than 6 million students and faculty. Onondaga Community College is the first public college in the nation to join this program.

Beginning with the fall 2019 semester students will have use of all of their required course material for a flat rate based on their registered credit hours, rather than the “sticker price” of the textbook. Students taking five courses (15 credit hours) will save an average of nearly $300 per semester. Printed textbooks, eBooks and access codes to interactive materials are all included in this program so students do not need to go without materials that in the past were cost-prohibitive.

Students who are eligible can apply financial aid to purchase the textbooks and the Chromebook at OCC. Students without adequate financial aid can also apply for an OCC scholarship to support these costs.

You can learn more about OCC’s Box of Books program at our spring Open House Saturday, April 13 at 9 a.m. You can register to attend at our website.

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