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Chaparral 2015-2016: 24.3 For the Love of Books

Garfield Gleanings - Book Fair Update (December 2015)


by Rosemarie Shamieh

Garfield Campus


Garfield’s 2nd Annual Pre-Owned Book Sale took place on Thursday, November 5, in our very own community room—and it was a doozy, offering a wide selection of books at ridiculously low prices! This event is a much appreciated convenience for our Continuing Education (CE) students who had been waiting for the fall sale as well as for our campus community who looks forward to de-cluttering their book shelves—or rather sharing their love of reading with others.

Getting ready for the 2nd Garfield Pre-Owned Book Sale

Here’s what the community room looked like just before the doors opened on the 5th:

In addition to gently used books, this year the sale included binders, metal book stands, shrink-wrapped movies and blank CDs. There’s even talk about adding small gift items and stationery for next year’s sale…

The money raised supports the Continuing Education-Business Department’s graduation fund.

Throughout the year, CE-business department faculty scavenge, collect, recycle, de-clutter, even respond to calls from colleagues to pick-up extra books for the expressed reason to add to our sale inventory. I can even vouch for a few individuals who purchased books online to donate to the event because our students asked for them last year.

Speaking of which, here’s a few more fun facts about this year’s book sale:

  • Found in a donated book: An American Express charge card that was used as a book mark; and in a separate book, a set of family photos from a dozen years ago.
  • Largest single sale(from a student): $53
  • Anonymous donation--no purchase: $10
  • Largest donation of cooking and recipe books: Marcia Hanford
  • Largest single donation: Annette Amirian
  • Most popular books: children’s books, cooking/recipe books, dictionaries and Gregg’s  Reference Manual
  • Most asked for books that we didn’t have: Microsoft 2013 software, ESL’s Side-by-Side book/workbook, 21st Century Accounting book with workbook, Longman’s dictionary (who knew?)
  • Oldest books for sale, once again: a tossup between our communication books and a book on DOS.
  • Most asked question—déjà vu: “Is this sale on tomorrow?” Followed by: “When is the next sale?” And: “Can I donate books too?”

In my own opinion, the quality of our books were excellent thanks to the generosity of the Garfield community. We had shrink-wrapped Microsoft Office 2010 books, sealed DVD movies, brand new reference and GED study guides, new children’s books, cook books, and a ton of  casual reading books. There was something for everyone.

I was especially proud of the children’s section at our sale this year which covered an entire table—almost five times more than last year’s offering thanks to faculty who took to heart the requests of our student population. What came as a surprise, however, was when one of the most requested books last year, the GED study guide, wasn’t as popular at this year’s sale.

Started as a way to “thin out” classroom/office book shelves, CE-Business Department faculty and staff held their first used book sale about 10 years ago on one table and one corner our classrooms on the top floor of the Tropico building. The sale netted us about $89—hardly worth the effort. Soon after, the big “money maker” was regular silent auctions of items donated by staff and faculty for staff and faculty as fund raisers for the graduation fund. But like all good things, the silent auction “got old” while the financial need didn’t. Only after we were forced to “pass the collection hat” at our department meeting were plans put in place to bring back the book sale. However, no one dreamed it would be the success it was and that it would grow to be an annual event our students (and really most of us) look forward to.

Priced at $1, $2, $3, $5, $8, and handful of $10, $15 and $20 items, contributed to our earning a total of $992 last year and approximately over $800 this year. Yet none of this would be possible without the generous donations of Garfield’s faculty, staff, family and friends—some of which contribute steadily all year long!

Thank you, Garfield community, for enthusiastically spreading the word, volunteering your time, collecting those books, “schlepping” them to work, and allowing your students to spend a few extra minutes at the sale which made it a huge success; no effort too small—and much appreciated by students who purchased eagerly.

Oh, and in case you were wondering about what happened to our unsold inventory: last year, we donated it to our campus library and this year about half was donated (courtesy of Janette Panganiban) to start a library in Catbalogan, Samar a very small town in the Philippines—and the rest was packed up waiting to be hauled out to a new storage place--ready for Garfield’s 2016 Pre-Owned Book Sale.

If reading this has inspired you to thin out your own book shelves, well I’ll gladly help take them off your hands and get them to Garfield’s next sale.


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