Taking a look at both photos you may notice that these are two completely different bookstores. The before image is of Campus Connections, the schools old bookstore. Campus Connections was located in Monroe Hall, or building 15 back then, just off the SAU. The bookstore was your average college bookstore selling campus apparel and books. As the school grew, Campus Connections added photography equipment and then eventually computers and accessories. Before RIT even moved to the Henrietta campus, students complained of high textbook prices, some even went as far to accuse the bookstore of making and wasting profits, and there was a common misconception that the store was a not-for-profit. In 1964 the campus magazine, The Reporter, did an article investigating these claims and found that the bookstore was making money but was never intended to be a not-for-profit but was instead used to subsidize other areas of the college.
After the move to Henrietta, Campus Connections grew as the campus’ bookstore and ended up adding new merchandise and products to their store. But in 2003, early planning had started for a new “college town” that would feature Barnes & Noble at RIT as a new bookstore for the college. By 2008 the newly named “Park Point at RIT” was officially opened and the new Barnes & Noble took the place of the old campus bookstore. Campus Connections still offered some value to the school as the Barnes & Noble did not sell the computing and photography equipment RIT students had become accustomed to, so the bookstore remodeled its business and became what we now know as the Digital Den. Although Barnes and Noble did not offer this equipment they brought great value to the college. With the sheer size of the new building Barnes & Noble is able to offer a much wider array of books. Not only does it include books for new classes and majors at RIT that would have been difficult to fit into the old store, but also vast array of non-required reading material. Barnes & Noble has prided themselves on providing a selection of books so students can dive deeper into their major, more than just the course material requires of them. Barnes & Noble also sells a wider variety of RIT apparel and has created a partnership with Starbucks to help differentiate them from the online market. Overall, Barnes & Noble gave the school a revitalized bookstore with many new perks that the old bookstore simply could not.