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Student Buys Textbook on Way into Final


Photo by Patrick // CC0

Junior Rick Sanchez walked out of his last midterm feeling entirely defeated. After stepping out of his packed Williams classroom, he realized he really should have purchased the textbook. The exam consisted of an essay, entirely focused on the text readings. 

He lamented, “I just thought it was a given that we wouldn’t actually read the textbook, so I didn’t bother.” 

Sanchez promised himself he was just going to have to apply himself for the final, except another essay that his professor promised would also contain material from the readings.

Two days before his final, he searched the book on Amazon. The Structure of Cuban History sure didn’t look interesting, and it’s $20.99 price tag didn’t seem worth it. Remembering his past exam, however, was Sanchez’s wakeup call. He immediately purchased the book with one-day shipping, hoping that it would arrive to Amazon@Penn on time.

Unfortunately, it arrived the day of his final, but Sanchez wasn’t worried. “Better late than never,” he said, seemingly to have forgotten how reading-based his professor’s tests are. Later that morning, Sanchez was seen walking down Locust book in hand, feverishly flipping through its pages. He wasn’t the only one though. Many of his classmates were seen doing the same thing.

“Well, actually, I bought the book a while ago,” said one classmate, Joe Stein. “Just because I bought it, though, doesn’t mean I ever actually open it.”

In fact, a new report of Penn Bookstore’s financial department says that not only has the unwillingness to buy the textbook hurt students’ grades, but it has also depreciated the bookstores funds. “Our sales numbers are the lowest they’ve ever been,” said the owner. The store has been unable to sell hard copies of the book for semesters now, something they claim must have to do with “the internet and the Facebook" and the "damn Millennials killing yet another industry."