The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Student Government, Sustainability office offer dueling textbook drives

Photo by Emma Sylvester for The Lafayette
The Office of Sustainability utilizes books donated during Green Move Out for its textbook drive.

Student Government unanimously passed a resolution on Oct. 18 permanently codifying the Textbook Loan Program, which loans out textbooks to students for free. The Office of Sustainability and the college store also has a textbook drive, offering textbooks for a small fee. 

Caitlin Mullooly ‘24, who chairs Student Government’s academic affairs committee, sponsored the resolution alongside representatives Chelsey Cochrane ‘25, Rhea Bandyopadhyay ‘25 and Chris Kirch ‘26, who also serve on the committee.

Both programs were formed to help alleviate textbook affordability problems that have long plagued the student body and reduce waste coming from educational resources.  

Before the resolution was passed, the Student Government textbook loan program was run informally, depending on the re-establishment of the program annually to survive. The program was originally created during the 2021-22 academic year and has since expanded to include over 300 textbooks, encompassing the majority of departments at Lafayette. 

“[The] resolution was necessary to ensure that the loan program transcends my time here and Olivia Lattanzi ‘23, who ran it before me,” Mullooly wrote in an email. “The passage of the resolution and the addition of the Textbook Loan Program to [the Student Government bylaws] makes it a recurring responsibility of the academic affairs committee to oversee and implement.” 

To borrow a book from Student Government, students must complete a form after checking the available book list. The academic affairs committee arranges pickup times and locations after the form deadline in the second week of the semester. Students return the books at the end of the semester. 

Mullooly says that throughout the program’s existence, there have been between 15 and 20 loan requests each semester. 

The Sustainability Office’s initiative with the college store started after the Sustainability Office had difficulty redistributing textbooks after students donated them during Green Move Out  — an initiative to reduce waste in the process of students moving out of their dorms at the end of the academic year.

“The College Store is a perfect venue for getting books to students because that’s where students go for books usually,” Samantha Smith, sustainability outreach and engagement manager, said. “We partnered with [them] and… [asked] that books that [were] collected through Green Move Out [be offered] at very low prices, like five to ten dollars … It was much more successful this way.”

Although there is a fee, students are allowed to keep the books once they purchase them, unlike the Student Government textbook loan program. 

Nonetheless, students can still donate their books at the end of the year through the Green Move Out program if they so choose. 

Last semester, the Sustainability Office collected about 900 books and distributed 249 of them. 

Both the Sustainability Office and Student Government have held the door open to collaboration.

“We are committed to creating an inclusive, equitable and sustainable resource for the student body,” Kirch said. “Together, we can ensure that this program evolves in ways that best serve the entire student body and our shared educational community.”

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About the Contributors
William Gutiérrez
William Gutiérrez, Staff Culture Writer
bang energy afficionado.
Emma Sylvester
Emma Sylvester, Photo Editor

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