Getting a new TV or Xbox has been a staple of Black Friday for years, but apparently Oakland has been offering deals on something out of the norm: tuition.
Oakland University offered discounts on tuition this Black Friday, and no one knew until after the national shopping day was over.
Traditionally the campus has been closed for break whenever Black Friday comes around, which is one reason why the sale has been an accidental secret to students.
“We honestly have sales here every year,” said Lauren Moseby, a worker in the Student Financial Services office. “I’m surprised that people don’t ever really take advantage of it.”
Deals were offered to all current students at OU, and these sales could knock up to 70 percent off of a student’s payment plan, and up to 40 percent of the total tuition. These Black Friday sales have been going on since 1997, according to Moseby, and they are still relatively unknown.
“We might get one or two students a year come through and get the discount,” Moseby said. “They tend to just look confused as though they didn’t know about it, but they end up leaving pretty happy.”
So why has no one heard about these promotions? A lack of advertising could be one reason, with the Black Friday sale only being promoted through word of mouth, which is an interesting strategy when no one knows about the sale.
The only student to take advantage of this year’s sale, Robert Zakowski, was shocked when he went into the Financial Services office last Friday. Zakowski is an engineering major currently in his fourth year here at Oakland.
“I just wanted to check and make sure that everything was all squared away on my account,” Zakowski said. “I ended up walking out with almost $1000 being taken off of my payment for this semester.”
Zakowski described the office as looking “like there was a massive party going on.” According to him, there were balloons, streamers hanging off of the ceiling and huge posters advertising the discounts that the office was offering.
“It was a really weird experience,” Zakowski said. “It’s like going to your mailbox to see if a package has come in, and you find an envelope with a few hundred dollars that you weren’t expecting. It was great, but still weird.”
For the past 20 years this deal has been happening, so how has this been kept a secret for such a long time? I guess we’ll never know.