Notice anything new about ODU’s bookstore?

Renovations to the University Bookstore were completed in early August. (Southside Daily photo/Courtesy of ODU)
Renovations to the University Bookstore were completed in early August. (Southside Daily photo/Courtesy of ODU)

NORFOLK — If you’ve been to the Village Bookstore this semester, you’ve probably noticed some changes.

The bookstore underwent major renovations which were completed in early August.

An upgrade to the 11-year-old bookstore was long overdue, said Follett Corp. regional director Darryl Atkinson.

He said the major changes are “more service-oriented.”

Rich Salata, director of in-store experience at Follett, and Todd Johnson, assistant vice president for auxiliary services, helped with the renovation, which included relocating several areas for quicker access.

For example, the e-Follett online order pick-up area was moved to the second floor, where the textbook aisles remain.

In an effort to improve the quality and accessibility of computer repair services and electronic products, the bookstore relocated its Monarch Techstore and computer repair shop to the first floor.

The repair shop was redesigned to include a transparent half-glass wall so students can observe their laptops and computers being repaired.

The bookstore also built an Apple Genius Bar on the first floor.

“One of our wish items was to have it so that we could do training kind of like a real Apple store,” Atkinson said. “Customers come in – we have an area that we can set up, work with them, answer their questions.”

Store co-manager Rhyannon Potter said there are also “Appy Hour” events to educate members of the campus community about Apple apps.

Potter also said that they wanted to increase community engagement by placing various seating areas around the first two floors of the bookstore.

The redesign includes a lounge space on the first floor for students to study, meet with friends, or gather for events.

Potter said the lounge area can hold up to 20 people, creating the possibility of hosting small events and gatherings.

Upstairs, there are new study area additions and lounge areas. At least 10 half-desks are stationed along a glass wall by the escalators, with charging stations nearby.

For fall hours, or to shop online, visit here.

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John Mangalonzo (john@localvoicemedia.com) is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.