By Mickey Winfield: PNT Staff Writer
Students and faculty returning to Eastern New Mexico University for the spring semester will find a new look to their campus bookstore — and the online system, which took some hits last semester seems to be up-and-running with no hitches.
The bookstore renovation began in November, most of the work was completed that month and the look was finished in December.
Barnes and Noble took over operation of the bookstore at the beginning of the fall semester.
“I think the layout is much clearer,” bookstore manager Cole Martin said. “Certainly the signs are clearer than the ones we had previously.”
Among many other changes, Martin said they put in all new flooring, new fixtures, added carpeted areas, replaced tile and painted the walls.
“It’s just different,” Martin said. “When you move a space around, you find places where you say, ‘Wow, there’s so much more room available now.’”
John Vick is returning for his second semester at ENMU, majoring in art.
“I like it,” Vick said. “It’s a lot more simple, it’s easy. (There are) big signs telling you where all the books are. The old book store — it was just a little section with the books and it was a little harder to find, but now it’s a lot easier with the signs.”
“Everybody notices it when they come in,” Martin said. “Some people just walk in and say, ‘Did you change something?’ and some people walk in and say, ‘Wow, that’s great.’”
While settling into their new digs, the bookstore is also ramping up for the new semester, which involves getting books on the shelves and handling hundreds of online orders — it’s the online orders that caused headaches for students and bookstore staff last semester.
“We did have a problem with our online ordering system,” Martin said. “We don’t know why, we were on a new system.”
“It caused some customers some big problems,” Martin said. “And if it caused one customer a problem, then it is a big problem to us, but it caused several customers some big problems.”
“I didn’t (have any problems),” Vick said. “I only had three of my classes with books, but a lot of my friends had trouble getting books and I don’t think this year is going to be a problem.”
Martin says the kinks have been worked out for the spring semester, in fact the bookstore has handled over 150 online orders already with no problems.
“We’re good to go now,” Martin said. “We have had no hiccups with anything.”