MTSU Phillips Bookstore, now operated by Barnes & Noble College, reopened for business Tuesday, June 16, as the rest of the university began a Phase I resumption of more on-campus activity since moving to remote courses and work in March because of the coronavirus pandemic.
MTSU alumnus and new bookstore manager Natalie Karousatos said store hours will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday for the time being.
Because the Student Union will remain closed for now, Karousatos said the best entry way will be an exterior entrance for customers on the side facing MTSU Boulevard.
Barnes & Noble College was awarded the contract to operate the bookstore through a competitive bid process, but was unable to open in early April with the university scaling back on-campus activities because of COVID-19.
Coronavirus health protocols for MTSU Phillips Bookstore will include all customers and visitors wearing face coverings and social distancing — Karousatos said the store floors are well marked with arrows and signage to keep at least six feet apart.
“We finally can open our doors,” said Karousatos, who added the bookstore was able and will continue to operate with online sales (www.shopmtsu.com). “We’re happy to be opening, Barnes & Noble is very excited to be on campus and I’m happy to be back here.”
Karousatos (Class of 1991 with a degree in broadcast journalism) returns to campus after six months as operations and community relations manager at Barnes & Noble at Vanderbilt University. The Lebanon, Tennessee, native has worked with Barnes & Noble since 2005, joining the company when she lived in Oklahoma City.
The manager said the bookstore has a Champion apparel (T-shirts and sweatshirts) buy one, get one half-off sale and offers a competitive textbook price-match program.
“We want to be a good campus partner,” Karousatos said. “We want to be our students’ choice for books and technology. Barnes & Noble College prides itself in customer service.”
Karousatos said MTSU Phillips Bookstore has a small staff, but is looking to hire employees for this fall. People can apply at www.bncjobs.com.
For more information, call 615-898-2700 during business hours or visit here.
—Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)