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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 13, No. 3. March 16th, 1950

Stud. Ass. Bookshop?

Stud. Ass. Bookshop?

The college year began with heavy financial burdens for most students. Fees have now been paid, but there is no breathing spaee: there is still a heavy expenditure for textbooks facing us.

Apart from the efforts of the SCM, who do all they can with the secondhand bookstall, all other textbooks must be bought from the larger booksellers. .

This has been found to be most unsatisfactory in two fundamental ways.

1. Booksellers are unwilling to take any risks for students. It is very selrom that the books required are to be found in the shops at the beginning of the session. Those which are ordered by the booksellers are usually only the essential texts, so that advanced students have to rely on libraries for the more general books which they find necessary.

2. The profits made are fantastic: certainly profits on textbooks are not so high as those on matter of more general appeal (25 per cent.-50 per cent as opposed to 50 per cent.-100 per cent), but still, particularly as a student market is a comparatively assured one, the percentage is high enough. Here again the more advanced students suffer, as the general books they need have a higher profit rate than those for science students say.

This problem is not, however, insurmountable. The Students' Association is capable of managing its own affairs, as has been seen in the past. Why, then, should it not interest itself in a matter of vital importance to most students? Training College together with various Government Departments and many secondary schools, have long imported their own books. Let the Students' Association set up its own organisation for direct importing.

With the co-operation of the college staff, orders can be placed sufficiently far in advance so that there should be no delay in having the books at the beginning of the year. These books could be retailed at 2/3 of their present price to make a sufficient profit.

We have now almost enough money to start on the Students' Union building. I suggest that provision could well be made for a Students Bookshop when the plans are being drawn up.