This spring, Shippensburg University launched the Textbook Network, a new program created to support students with their textbook needs.

As the cost of textbooks and course materials increase, students are often forced to decide between purchasing books or paying for other expenses. According to a recent survey by, 66 percent of students opted out of buying textbooks because of the cost and many Ship students are faced with the same dilemma.

But this is not just a financial hurdle for students, it’s a hurdle in their academic success.

Of those who opted out of purchasing books, 94 percent stated they were concerned not purchasing a textbook would negatively impact their grade.

“This program is two-fold in its approach, we’re not just easing a financial burden for students, we’re making sure they have the necessary tools to succeed in their education,” said Dr. Jennifer Haughie, associate vice president for Retention and Student Success.

The Textbook Network expands textbook access options for students. They can purchase or rent textbooks from the university bookstore, borrow up to two books per semester from a new lending library, apply for a book scholarship or reserve textbooks from the library for specific time blocks.

According to Haughie the program further supports student success by strategically placing them in the university library for many of these services. When picking up their textbooks they engage with library staff and begin to build relationships that connect them with additional resources and research support.

In its first semester 110 students have received textbook scholarships and many are utilizing the lending library and book reserve program and Haughie is hopeful those numbers will grow.

“This really has been a campus-wide collaborative effort and we’re working to expand the lending library so we can help even more students succeed at Ship,” added Haughie.

Want to learn more about the Textbook Network? Check out the website for a list of textbook support services: