By Abby Weingarten
Swag, anyone? It’s now as easy as a keyboard-click to get NCF-branded T-shirts, hoodies and drinkware as New College’s new Follett-run store is now online.
“This is something our alumni and students have been wanting for quite some time,” said Ann Comer-Woods, the director of the Office of Communications & Marketing (OCM) at New College.
To execute the design and inventory on the new site, Follett Higher Education began working in the spring with a team at New College that included Comer-Woods; Kim McDonald, the OCM’s associate director/creative services manager; and Chris Kinsley, New College’s vice president of finance and administration.
Prior to the redesign, a limited supply of New College merchandise was available online on the dual site with the University of South Florida (USF) Sarasota-Manatee campus. But the brick-and-mortar bookstore at 6301 North Tamiami Trail on the west side of the New College campus was always where most students and faculty members purchased their materials. The physical bookstore at New College will continue to remain open in addition to the online option.
“What’s great about the new online store is that we’re not confined by physical space anymore,” Comer-Woods said. “And the inventory you could order online [from the old USF-run site] was extremely limited before, so the advantage of having our own online campus store is it allows us to offer a much broader, diverse range of merchandise branded with the New College insignia.”
Some of those products include decal magnets, duffel totes, backpacks, hats, scarves and collectibles. There are even items for infants, toddlers and pets, and offerings from brands like Adidas®, Columbia® and Under Armour®.
“This site will allow us to promote New College-branded merchandise to students, faculty, alumni, parents and anyone else who has a vested interest in New College,” Comer-Woods said. “The other nice aspect of it is that departments on campus will be able to order merchandise through the online store, and New College donors will be able to get a discount on merchandise through the Novo Perks program.”
The rollout has been a long time coming. In 2018, the USF System chose Follett to manage the bookstores at the USF Sarasota-Manatee location as well as the New College campus (Barnes & Noble had previously managed the stores). Follett Corporation is the world’s largest single source of books, entertainment products, digital content and multimedia for libraries, schools and retailers. The company provides education technology, services, and physical and digital content to millions of students at 70,000 schools, and more than 2,850 physical and virtual campus stores in North America.
Follett consistently refreshes its general merchandise inventory, making it a one-stop shop for both classroom and campus life essentials. From now until November 30, visitors to the New College store can score 25 percent off T-shirts to mark the site’s grand opening. So stop in and shop.
To visit the store, go to shop.ncf.edu
Abby Weingarten is the editor/writer in the Office of Communications & Marketing.