SXU receives more than $240,000 in federal grant money to implement textbook rental program

Saint Xavier University has received a two-year $242,560 federal grant to implement a textbook rental program for several general education courses.

Students will be able to rent textbooks through the General Education Curriculum Textbook Rental Program beginning in the 2010 fall semester. The grant money will supply about 2,100 rental books for some of the most populated general education courses and will cover 100 percent of the program’s expenses.

Rental fees collected over the two-year grant period will be used to continue adding courses and textbooks to the rental program, with the goal of developing a comprehensive undergraduate textbook rental program within five years.

Only about one percent of United States colleges and universities offer textbook rental programs, according to the National Association of College Stores. Students typically need to purchase textbooks at the beginning of each semester, when their financial resources are most limited. The Illinois Board of Education noticed this may result in students choosing to postpone buying textbooks, which can limit their ability to succeed in their coursework.

The grant, which comes from the U.S. Department of Education Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, was awarded to support projects that propose innovative efforts to increase opportunities for students to rent college course materials. The grant is under the direction of Campus Book Store manager Janice McMahon.