Students Face Sticker Shock as They Head Back to Classes

Created: 08/25/2014 5:43 PM
By: Brianna Long

(ABC 6 News) -- It is one of the highest out-of-pocket expenses college students will pay for, many feeling the sticker shock this week as they head back to classes.

The Rochester Community and Technical College Bookstore was a busy place Monday, filled with students excited about their first day of school. What they're not excited about is the cost of textbooks.

"Mine were $250 or $300 I think," said Donovon Mancilman, a first year student at RCTC.

"I only bought half my books, but it was over 500 dollars," said fellow first year student Jacy.

"It was close to, it was over 1000. Mine was closer to 1200," added WSU-Rochester students Hollie Sell and Kalia Moore.

Those aren't exactly the numbers you want to hear when you're on a college student budget.

"Slowly, I'm drowning in finances. My job is keeping me afloat barely. Rent, college life, textbooks, tuition, it is a lot," said Mancilman.

The books are required for class, but how students get those books changes. Some go for the cheapest price, while others look for convenience.

"Rental books have become quite popular. So we do a lot of rental books, and online orders are really popular," said Michelle Danielson, the bookstore supervisor at RCTC.

"It surprises me a little that more students do not want the e books. The students who are in school right now are used to technology. They are used to looking at cell phones, tablets, computers," said RCTC President Leslie McClellon.

Part of the reason for that, might be that a lot of e-books can only be used on laptops or computers, not on tablets.

"That would be super convenient, because you wouldn't have to carry around so many books," said student Brittanie Hoerner.

"I think it would benefit the students learning, it would benefit colleges, so it would be a great change that should be welcomed," added Mancilman.

For now though, we can expect to see long lines at the bookstore while students pick up the traditional textbooks, and get that shock when it comes time for checkout.

Another reason e-books may not be so popular, college officials say e-books cannot be resold.

Photo: MGN