Upon participating in Operation Bookstamp, Florida A&M University students can sleep soundly, knowing their textbooks cannot be stolen and sold to FAMU’s bookstore.
Operation Bookstamp is a companion program to Operation I.D., a nationwide program that provides an easy way to identify stolen items.
Through this program, crime prevention representatives and FAMU bookstore personnel stamp identifying information on the front cover of books after the last drop and add date for classes.
This program helps the FAMU Department of Public Safety and the FAMU Bookstore in the tracking and resale of books.
“I.D. matching the identifying data must be presented before the book can be resold to the bookstore,” said Sgt. Sherri Luke, FAMU’s crime prevention officer.
Although exact data on the number of books stolen each semester is not kept, there are a few cases each year, said Luke.
While assigned to the investigations unit in 2005, Luke said she witnessed countless disputes between roommates and students over the ownership of textbooks. She also said books were being sold to the bookstore or other students especially toward the end of the semester when student’s funds may be low.
Luke said, one student would claim that a book belonged to them but had no way of identifying the book as theirs.
“The program has lost momentum over the years but is something that we need to re-implement,” said Luke.
Many students have no knowledge Operation Bookstamp.
“FAMU really needs to put more effort toward informing us of programs like this,” said Amelia Brooks, 23, a fourth-year criminal justice student of Tallahassee. “I am in my last year, if I would have known about this program my freshman year I would have definitely participated in it.”
“Crime Prevention is not a one man operation; it takes the commitment of the student population as well as the community to keep prevention programs in the forefront,” said Luke.
“Although this is a cool program, it won’t work unless students are proactive,” said Shameka Thompson, 22, a fourth-year business administration student from Tampa.
For more information, contact FAMU’s Department of Public Safety.