Last year, Barnes & Noble College began its partnership with Long Beach City College (LBCC) to manage its Liberal Arts Campus (LAC) and Pacific Coast Campus (PCC) bookstores. At that time, the PCC Campus bookstore had temporarily been re-located to the school’s cafeteria while the school made renovations to the EE Building – the future home of the PCC Campus Viking Bookstore.
After months of renovations, the bookstore celebrated its grand re-opening to the delight of the campus and local community. Planned by the LBCC Public Relations Department, the celebration included LBCC Vice President of Administrative Services Ann-Marie Gabel and keynote speaker Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Superintendent-President, Long Beach Community College District.
The bookstore provided a photo booth for customers to have their photos taken and published on the bookstore’s Facebook page, and gave away tote bags filled with candy to commemorate the big day. “The campus did an amazing job renovating the building,” praised Barnes & Noble College Regional Manager Denise Nakakihara, crediting LBCC with the design and construction of the building as well as the coordination of the grand opening. “It’s an incredible store that LBCC has given the students and allowed us to ‘live in,’ but it’s all their doing,” she added.
The Viking Bookstore is now more conveniently located in the center of campus, adjacent to the new Student Union. The EE Building also hosts several classrooms, computer labs, and student service facilities. One wall of the bookstore is made almost entirely of glass and looks out onto a grass courtyard, giving the store a more modern and accessible look. “We feel more like a part of the campus now,” said PCC Viking Bookstore Manager Harold Taylor. “We’ve received such positive comments from the students. When they first saw this new space they said, ‘Wow, we actually have a bookstore now.’ It’s just a more welcoming environment – a more beautiful and brightly lit bookstore.”
LBCC’s partnership with Barnes & Noble College has brought more student resources to the bookstore. When the store was located in the cafeteria, the textbook department operated completely over-the-counter. Now, students can walk through the textbook aisles to select the books and formats they want and need. The store also offers a wider selection of used, rental and digital textbooks, as well as a wider assortment of convenience offerings, clothing and supplies. “We’ve heard nothing but great feedback from the students, and they appreciate that we’re reaching out on campus – informing students and faculty about what we have to offer,” LBCC Viking Bookstores General Manager Dana Heathcott said. “We can now offer LBCC students every imaginable textbook option as well as everything they need to succeed academically – all in one bookstore.”
PCC’s campus is currently undergoing renovations to its food services building. The new building is scheduled to open in 2015 and will host a freestanding convenience store that Barnes & Noble College will also operate. The renovations to the EE Building and future renovations at PCC continue to improve the campus. “This building has done so much to add to the caliber and overall appeal of the PCC campus,” Nakakihara said. “It’s a great place for students and it has changed the face of this campus.”