With technology becoming evermore impressive, Apple's new gadgets are the top of many people's lists. And if you're a student at South Dakota State University, getting an iPod, iPad, or Mac computer just got a whole lot easier.
Thousands of South Dakota State University students returned to a brand new bookstore this fall.
"We got rid of the drop ceiling so kids will come in and they just say it seems a lot bigger," the bookstore's marketing coordinator Stephen Brua said.
Brua said the ceiling is just the beginning of the changes. A new layout, new fixtures, new checkout aisle, it all helps students have an easier bookstore experience. But the biggest surprise may be when you walk in, and turn around.
"A while ago the Apple store had kind of been something that had been discussed but obviously we weren't ready for it. So, once the remodel started, Apple came back to us and it was on of those things we could start rolling on," Brua said.
This if the first and only Apple store on any campus in South Dakota.
"You know, I feel pretty happy that we are the only one in the state that does have it," Brua said.
Above anything else the coined HoboTech store is meant to make the college experience a little bit easier, and better. And if you're a senior broadcast journalism major, such as Nikki Brown who is required to have a Mac, the Apple store is a welcomed addition.
"That’s going to be a huge convenience. I remember my computer, my hard drive, crashed so I had to make a quick trip down to Sioux Falls before class and drop it off and be like 'hey, can you fix this today and I'll come back later and pick it up,'" Brown said.
That rush for repairs will now only take a quick trip to the center of campus. They also have a wide variety of add-on's for nearly anything Apple.
"Anything I need, any software, I just walk over there and get it," Brown said.
But it’s not just the students who are excited about the new store. Journalism and mass communication professor Matthew Cecil says even from the front of the classroom, the Apple store is a great addition.
"It’s so nice to be able to say, 'you need a computer, go across the parking lot and get it. You need help installing software, whatever, all your needs will be taken care of right on campus.'. It's just super convenient for us," Cecil said.
All incoming freshman in the journalism program also have to get a Mac.
"They come in from various places around the state and the region with maybe not a lot of experience with Macs. They used Windows or whatever in their high school days, so they come in and they have a lot of questions," Cecil said.
They're questions that the HoboTech staff can answer. The new store also offers Apple's educational discount, but in order to use it, it’s a case of who you know.
"Say, like if my mom wanted to buy something, you know she can buy it through me. All we need is a student, faculty or staff to tie it back to," Brua said.
And it all comes back to Apple helping take a bite out of education at SDSU.
"You're going to be able to do your classes, get your homework done a lot faster," Brown said.
"We have a tremendous support system that makes technology work on this campus. This is just another addition to that support system and we're pleased anytime something like that comes along. It makes the experience for the students better," Cecil said.
SDSU hopes to have a grand opening for the store at the end of October.