The UConn Co-op Responds to UConn’s Decision to Issue an RFP (Request for Proposals)
STORRS, CT – “We believe the UConn Co-op is the best choice,” said Timothy Dzurilla, the Chair of the Board of the UConn Co-op in response to UConn’s announcement that it has put out an RFP for a bookstore operator.
For the past forty years the UConn Co-op, an independent member-owned non-profit co-operative, has served the UConn community including students, faculty, alumni, scholars, Husky fans, readers, local families and people of wide and diverse backgrounds and interests with deep dedication and professionalism. Though disappointed that the University administration is seeking proposals to possibly replace the UConn Co-op, the Board of Directors and staff of the Co-op fervently believe that the Co-op can far better meet the needs of students, faculty and staff than a for-profit national corporation head-quartered in a distant city.
The UConn Co-op is widely considered a leader in collegiate retailing and is held in high esteem by publishers and colleagues throughout the nation, including members of the National Association of College Stores and members of the American Booksellers Association. The Co-op will continue to innovate and change as the needs of academia evolve.
Today the Co-op offers students a variety of choices in how they can obtain their course books including rentals, used books, e-books, physical books available throughout the semester, and Verba, a service that enables students to comparison price and shop. For students’ convenience, the Co-op maintains a bricks and mortar bookstore at each regional and professional campus of the University of Connecticut as well as an online presence.
The Co-op offers the largest selection of UConn gear ranging from Husky tees with student-friendly pricing to top of the line apparel. The Co-op not only sells computers, but also has a professionally trained staff of technicians, including certified Apple technicians ready to meet any repair need or emergency.
The UConn Co-op is an integral member of the UConn community. The Co-op brings authors to the various campuses, works with student organizations, and collaborates with faculty, departments, institutes and cultural centers. The UConn Co-op Bookstore at Storrs Center is a world-class bookstore with a lively roster of events that serves as the anchor to Storrs Center. In addition to serving the UConn community, the bookstore at Storrs Center serves schools and organizations in the surrounding towns.
“Before ‘locally-owned’ was the trend, UConn lead the way with a locally-owned bookstore,” said Dzurilla. “Local ownership allows the Co-op to be more responsive to the needs of students, faculty and staff than a distant, profit-focused corporation. The UConn Co-op puts service, not profit, first.”
The UConn Co-op will submit a proposal to continue its service to the University of Connecticut and looks forward to working with its many constituents to show those making the selection that the Co-op is the best choice.
The UConn Co-op is a cooperative corporation established to provide bookstore services for its members and the University of Connecticut community. It is owned by its members and governed by an elected board of directors. At present, there are approximately 35,000 members, primarily students, faculty and staff of the University of Connecticut. The UConn Co-op is open to the public. In addition to the bookstore on the Storrs campus, Storrs Center, five regional campuses of the University throughout the state, the UConn School of Law, MBA Shop and UConn Health in Farmington.