February 25, 1994
Media Contact:Michael Purdy
Book lovers worldwide know the place. You visit Oxford, you go to Blackwell's. Almost as famous as the university is the book-wonderful spot where you go for 20 minutes and spend two hours. "I want Hopkins to become the Blackwell's of medical books," says Jean Williams, newly hired head of Hopkins Medical Bookstore.
Last fall, the bookstore became part of a nationwide chain operated by Matthews Medical Books - a specialist in health sciences - making the facility independently run after 20 years of University ownership. Matthews aims to make Hopkins its flagship store, expanding inventory from 4,000 to 19,000 books and remodeling the interior.
Williams envisions a store "where people from all over the city walk in and feel compelled to stay." Chairs for browsers, a wide selection of previously subscription-only journals and a coffee bar will become features. A newly trained staff has quick access to information such as how long publishers take to send an,order or when a new edition is coming out. Williams is also switching to an updated inventory control system to keep popular books in stock.
"We want a world-class bookstore here, where people from any country can order. The way people think of Hopkins as an institution,"says Williams, "is how we want them to think of our bookstore."