Bookstore No More


Cash Lee

Grand re-opening sign in front of the bookstore.

by Cash Lee, Staff Reporter

Has the bookstore left you with haunting receipts or taken your arm in return for a textbook? Let those memories become ghosts of the past because it is being transformed into the Simpson College Spirit Shop.  

The bookstore is currently undergoing renovations to become more student and community-focused.

 “We’re going to be selling more than just apparel. There’s going to be some similar things like Champion and Nike, but then there’s going to be more stuff we weren’t allowed to have before. This allows us to be more creative in expressing our brand, which is a reflection of the college’s mission,” Director of Presidential Initiatives, Megan Shultz said. 

“What I’m most excited about is the impact that this is going to have, it’s a spirit shop, so in its essence, it’s going to help increase spirit,” Shultz said. “People are going to be excited to wear Simpson gear, and people are proud to go to school and work here, so it’s nice to have something to show it off.” 

Kyle McVay has been hired as the Director of the Spirit Shop. He has Indianola roots, graduated from Simpson and has worked here for over 10 years. McVay talked about what he is looking forward to most. 

“I know what it’s like being told what you can have, so for me, it’s going to be the freedom and ability to create while taking the place to a different level and catering to the community.”

Simpson-themed roller bags, signs, home goods, memorabilia and elephant adult onesies are all in the mix of possible items. McVay pointed out that he is looking for help from the campus, “I’m going to reach out to students, faculty and staff to find out what your true wants and needs are, and do my best to bring that to the store because I work for you.”

If you are wondering where you’ll be able to get books now, don’t worry. Simpson has partnered with the textbook provider, Akademos. It is a website that gives students access to the same things a bookstore would. Students are able to buy or rent new, used or digital books. It is a marketplace that will let you sell those books back when you no longer need them.

 “The quote that I got from Akademos was that they save students an average of 62 percent on their total textbook costs,” said Shultz. 

The marketplace will also let you sell other books that you’ve found or bought in the past. 

The shift away from bookstores has been a trend in colleges at a national level, and Simpson has joined the pack. “Giving Kyle the freedom to turnover inventory, but also to listen to the needs of the community when they say they would like something is our reason,” Shultz said.

If you have suggestions for new or trendy fashion, reach out to Kyle McVay in the bookstore. 

There will be a soft opening on Oct. 7th to give limited people a preview. The grand opening will be on Oct. 14th, with live mannequins to show off new apparel.