Kelly Johnston

Recent Posts

July 9, 2019 | by Kelly Johnston |

How Many Hours Does It Take To Work Off College Tuition?

Why paying your way through college is a thing of the past.

As the presidential debates kick off, everyone is talking about the big issues leading up to the 2020 election. The largest economic issue is one that is becoming impossible to ignore -  the student loan debt crisis. The newest study by Textbookrush.com has provided further proof that for most students, coming out of school debt free is a thing of the past. Forty years ago, a student attending college could pay for their tuition and housing by simply working a part time job, something that is impossible to accomplish today.

The number of hours required to work in order to cover education costs has skyrocketed due to the rising costs of education and the decline of wages compared to inflation. Over the past forty years, the cost of tuition and housing has increased over 250% while the cost of textbooks rose over 1000%. In this time, the value of the minimum wage has declined fairly steadily since its peak in 1968 and possibly even more unsettling - the federal minimum wage has not changed in over ten years. The following illustrates how many hours a student would need to work at minimum wage to pay for their education.

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May 30, 2019 | by Kelly Johnston |

How Today's Student is Thinking Smarter about College

They’re digitally savvy. They want a good quality of life and career growth. They've grown up with iPhones in hand, YouTube at their fingertips and instant access to the internet. Nearly 60% of Gen Z is enrolled in college, making your campus the most uniquely diverse it has ever been.

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May 22, 2019 | by Kelly Johnston | in Partnerships

Wartburg College and Akademos Partner to Streamline Course Material Adoptions, Purchasing, and Customer Service

One big question can weigh on the minds of college administration and faculty at smaller institutions - how can we reduce the costs of textbooks without having the purchasing power to command lower prices? Even with the existence of online retailers who can offer significant savings, there is the additional struggle to make sure the materials students are using their hard earned money on are usable and effective.

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May 2, 2019 | by Kelly Johnston | in Partnerships

The College of St. Scholastica Introduces New Online Course Materials Platform

Akademos to manage course materials process through CSS online bookstore and benefit administration, faculty, and students

How do you compete effectively in the college textbook environment? A significant decline in bookstore sales for the past 5+ years has caused many university administrators to look at the campus bookstore model differently and re-examine its role in serving the student population. Course material needs are changing and books are being replaced with access codes, eBooks, and custom CoursePacks. Shoppers have more options, the convenience and price factors of eCommerce has helped sales grow 15% in the last year alone.  

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April 30, 2019 | by Kelly Johnston | in Partnerships

University of South Dakota Partners with Akademos for Hybrid Bookstore Model

New USD online bookstore meets the convenience and affordability needs of students while retail store supports student life

Student expectations are becoming increasingly challenging for administrators. When 1 in 3 freshmen do not return for their sophomore year, there is significant pressure to find strategies to successfully retain students. From the admissions process through graduation day, many institutions are looking for unique ways to serve the changing needs of their campus communities.

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The $1,000 eBook

Recently, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette made headlines for a $1,000 eBook. The access code for an introductory accounting course was purposefully priced at almost 4x the cost of the printed textbook. Criticism of the university and publisher spread quickly over social media, accusing them of price manipulation and scamming students into more debt. UL-Lafayette’s response did not do much to assuage anger, causing much disbelief that the institution acted on “good intentions.” Even further providing fuel for the fire when the price of the digital version was changed to match the print version and not significantly lower like most digital texts.

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