Library Services During COVID-19

Library Rules Under COVID-19

Cartoon person wearing a mask
  1. Masks (covering both nose and mouth) are required in all public areas & classrooms.
  2. Do not move the furniture.
  3. One person per study room. No exceptions!
  4. Eat only in: Cup & Chaucer and Private Study Rooms. Study carrels only while eating; masks on otherwise.
  5. Must physically distance from others (6 feet minimum).
  6. Don’t give library staff a hard time — you must show your ID when asked.
  7. If you need something, ask — this is new to all of us and we will do our best to help you.

If you cannot comply, a COVID-19 Concern Form will be submitted.

The Van Wylen Library is open:

  • Monday-Thursday: 7:45 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
  • Friday: 7:45 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Saturday: Noon – 5:00 p.m.
  • Sunday: Noon – 11:00 p.m.

You can check our hours on the website.

The doors into the library will remain locked, so you will always need your Hope ID to access the building using the card readers at the doors.

The Research Help Desk will be staffed by student assistants for brief inquiries and for help making Research Consultations with a librarian. We have a great new scheduling system and strongly recommend that students make a virtual appointment with a librarian to help them utilize library resources and get started on research projects.

Using the library will be different.

  • Masks will be required in public areas including at study tables.
  • Occupancy has been reduced and will be monitored. Furniture has been arranged to promote social distancing. Only two students are permitted at each large study table. Plexiglass barriers have been installed to divide tables. We are providing more enclosed study carrels for students – limited to one person at a time.
  • Students will be asked to disinfect study tables before and after using them with provided disinfecting supplies.
  • Computers and Printers will be physically distanced and only one person at a time will be allowed to pick up print jobs.
  • The Cup & Chaucer will be open. Food & Drink will be permitted only in individual study carrels on the ground, 3rd, and 4th floors, or at outside tables.
  • Hand sanitizer is available throughout the building and its use is strongly encouraged after using equipment.

The stacks will remain open however we strongly encourage students to request books and other materials via Hope Primo for contactless pickup. Books will be retrieved wearing a mask and gloves and placed on a table near the circulation desk for pickup.

The TechLab is now the Digital Media Lab. Since only two students will be allowed in the lab at a time, students must make appointments to visit the lab.  Virtual Digital Media Lab appointments will also be available. Contact to schedule a consulting session. Stations for color printing and poster printing are at the Digital Media Lab desk and will be disinfected after each use. Large-format scanners are also available at the Digital Media Lab and will be similarly disinfected.

The Joint Archives of Holland will be open however space is limited to four people in the reading room. Students who would like to use archival materials should contact the Archivist ahead of time to arrange access to materials or arrange a research consultation.

The Klooster Center for Excellence in Writing will continue offering sessions online when classes resume in August. Some in-person writing sessions may return during Fall Semester, but initially, the KCEW Writing Assistants will be providing their help through emails, phone calls, shared Google Docs, Zoom and Meet formats. 

If there is anything else that the Van Wylen Library and Joint Archives team can do, please do not hesitate to ask.

Hope College Library Remote Services

Keep calm and ask a librarian…just not in person!

Until further notice, the Van Wylen Library and Theil Research Center are closed to the public, including to students, faculty and staff. We are committed to supporting both students and faculty remotely as classes move online.  

A large amount of our material is already online. Search Primo and limit results to “available online”. Remember that you may need to login to access content from off-campus. As courses transition to online, if additional e-book or e-video content is needed, please contact a librarian

Stay on top of the news. Students and faculty have access to the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. See the LibGuide on access to newspapers online.

Research Librarians can answer questions by email and through virtual consultations. Research Librarians are also available to join your classes online to provide instruction.

The Joint Archives of Holland will also be providing services virtually to students, faculty and staff. Contact

The Klooster Center for Excellence in Writing will be offering virtual appointments.  Instead of filling out the usual appointment form for an in-person peer-review session, students should simply email and attach their writing project (many formats are accepted for attachments).

Interlibrary Loan: As many libraries in Michigan and around the country are closing to the public, borrowing and lending of physical material have been essentially halted. MeLCat requesting has been suspended. We will still do our best to obtain articles and book chapters and are also able to digitize from our own collection. Contact with questions. 

Faculty should refer to the Library Support for Online Teaching Libguide. Students should check out the Libguide Library Support for Online Learning.

Due dates have been extended until April 15 for all library material.  If your item was already overdue, your due date did not change. We do not expect material to be returned during this time but if you’d like to sort out your overdue item, please email All due dates in your Primo Account are accurate.

If there is anything else we can do for you, do not hesitate to ask. We will do our best to support you, even at a distance.

Library Exam Week Hours

We are offering extended hours this week for your studying pleasure!

Friday, December 68:00 am – 6:00 pm
Saturday, December 79:00 am – midnight
Sunday, December 89:00 am – 2:00 am
Monday, December 98:00 am – 2:00 am
Tuesday, December 108:00 am – 2:00 am
Wednesday, December 118:00 am – midnight
Thursday, December 128:00 am – midnight
Friday, December 138:00 am – 5:00 pm
Saturday, December 14closed
Sunday, December 15closed

National Hispanic Heritage Month

To help celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15-October 15) we enlisted help from a few campus partners!

English professors Dr. Jesus Montaño and Dr. Regan Postma-Montaño made a list of the “25 books by Latinx and Latin American Authors That Every College Student Should Know!” All the books have been gathered at the display on the 2nd floor near the stairwell. The list includes this year’s Big Read title In the Time of Butterflies by Julia Alvarez!

Sylvia Rodriguez from Hope’s Latino Student Organization made a great poster (left) promoting our display (right).

We hope you get a chance to read at least one of these books before October 15. It’s important to read books from a variety of voices to help understand the human experience more fully! Thank you to our campus partners for helping to curate this display!

Rare Books Enrich Library’s Collection

The Hope College Van Wylen Library has received a gift of four very rare Dutch books, printed between 1669 and 1738, and all are related to exploration and travel. A gift from Keith Miller, grandson of Herman Miller, the books represent a particular place and period in the history of printing when European readers had a voracious appetite for books about other peoples, places and religions.

Kelly Jacobsma and the gift of rare books

The titles (approximate translations into English) of the four books are:

Atlas Japannensis or Memorable Embassies of the Dutch East India Company to the Emperors of Japan by Arnoldus Montanus. Published by Jacob van Meurs, Amsterdam, 1669.  This is the first major non-Jesuit work about Japan after the closing of Japan to non-Dutch Europeans in 1640.

An Embassy from the East India Company of the United Provinces to the Grand Tartar Cham Emperor of China by Jan Nieuhoff, published by Jacob van Meurs, Amsterdam, 3rd edition,1670. This was the first extensively illustrated book describing China. First published in 1665. The accounts were based on the journals of Johan Nieuhf, who had embarked on a quasi-official embassy to the imperial court in Beijing nearly a decade earlier; the book is comprised of several texts, many of them derived from earlier Jesuit sources.

A Voyage to the Levant: or, Travels in the Principal Parts of Asia Minor by M. Corneille le Bruyn. Published by H. van Krooneveld, Deft, 1698. Dutch painter and traveller Cornelious de Bruyn travelled to Constantinople and throughout the Levant and the Ottoman empire between 1677 and 1685. This region today would be Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Cyprus, Turkey, Israel, Jordan, and Palestine. 

The Ceremonies and Religious Customes of the Various Nations of the Known World; together with historical annotations and several curious discourses by Jean Frederic Bernard, Bernard Picart and Abraham Moubach. Published in Gravenhage, Amsterdam and Rotterdam by Van der Kloot, Uytwerf, and Beman; 1727-1738  in 7 volumes). Considered the most famous encyclopedic work on religion of the 18th century, it was later called the first global vision of religion. The seven volumes include extensive engravings by Bernard Picart, one of the most famous engravers of the 18th century. Vol. 1 Jews/Catholics Vol 2 Catholics Vol 3 Americas, Vol 4 India, Asia, Africa, Vol 5 Greek Orthodox, Protestants, Vol 6 Anglicans, Quakers, Deists, Vol 7 Islam. 

The fact that all four books were owned by Herman Miller, the President of the Herman Miller Furniture Company,  raises a number of interesting questions. It is unknown how he acquired them, but I like to think that they were owned originally by a single individual.

So significant are each of these books that they have themselves been the subject of a number of books and articles. In The Book that Changed Europe (Hunt, Jacob and Mijnhardt, Harvard University Press,2010), the authors describe Religious Ceremonies of the World as “marking a major turning point in European attitudes toward religious belief and hence the sacred. It sowed the radical idea that religions could be compared on equal terms, and therefore that all religions were equally worthy of respect — and criticism.” The books offer incredible insight into eighteenth century views of religion and especially of religious tolerance. 

The author and illustrator of A Voyage to the Levant, Corneille le Bruyn, is the subject of a book chapter theorizing that he was likely a spy, and possibly involved in a politically motivated murder of a Dutch statesman. 

Hope student Aine O’Conner will be using the Bernard and Picart book on Ceremonies and Religious Customes in her research for an independent study this fall.

When published, The Ceremonies and Religious Customes of the Various Nations of the Known World was sold primarily by subscription for 150 florins, probably about $9,000 in today’s money.

The fact that all four books were owned by Herman Miller, the President of the Herman Miller Furniture Company,  raises a number of interesting questions. It is unknown how he acquired them, but I like to think that they were owned originally by a single individual. Such a person would have likely had an extensive library and was probably quite wealthy. When published, The Ceremonies and Religious Customes of the Various Nations of the Known World was sold primarily by subscription for 150 florins, probably about $9,000 in today’s money.

Welcome to the New School Year! Part 1

We are so happy to have new and returning students on campus! This will be a great year.

The library can assist you in many ways. Though we have thousands of books you can check out, we also have a number of services and spaces to help you excel this year.

Research Help

Stop in at the Research Help Desk for assistance on finding sources for your paper or project topic. You can also make an appointment with a Research and Instruction Librarian.

Media Services

Color printing and office supplies for sale; cameras, headphones and laptops to check out! This is just the tip of the iceberg! Chances are, Media Services has what you need to get going on your project. Check here for an up-to-date list of available equipment.


Studying alone or with a group? We have many different kinds of spaces on all floors for you to use. We love to see the library full of students as well as faculty and staff!

Your group can connect their laptops to the MediaScapes on the first floor!
Our Brody chairs, also on the first floor, provide a distraction-free enviroment.

Stay tuned for more library services highlights in Part 2!

Senior Library Student Worker Purchases for the Collection 2019

Last week, we celebrated our senior student workers with a luncheon at Alpen Rose. Many have worked at the library all four years. We enjoy getting to know these students and appreciate everything they do to help keep the Library running!

In appreciation for all they do for the Library, every spring, graduating senior student workers are able to choose an item (book, CD, or DVD) to add to our collection. That item might be in the student’s discipline of study or from a different area of interest.

The class of 2019’s choices:

TEch lab

Audrey McDonald

Deborah Kang


technical services

Kendra Grulke







Dahlia Marquez

Alexandra Perry

Kaila Robertson

Sarah Stroop

Emily Veldman

media desk

Stephanie Prentis

Meredith Predum

Sarah Schaefer

Jennifer Lussenhop

Matthew Orr

 research and instruction

Emily Salazar


Exam Week Activities Around Campus

Sunday, April 28

9 am *  Coffee and Donuts  * Van Wylen Library

7 pm * Rope of Hope * Dimnent Chapel

9 pm * Study Snack * Van Wylen Library

9 pm * Aromatherapy Hand Relaxation * Library Room 201 (sign up outside 201 starting Friday!)

All Day * Relaxation Station * Van Wylen Library

Monday, April 29

9 pm * Study Breakfast * Phelps Dining Hall

All Day * Relaxation Station * Van Wylen Library

Tuesday, April 30

noon- 2 pm * Therapy Dogs * Bultman Student Center Great Room & Living Room

9 pm * Study Snack * Van Wylen Library

All Day * Relaxation Station * Van Wylen Library

Wednesday, May 1

All Day * Relaxation Station * Van Wylen Library

Thursday, May 2

All Day * Relaxation Station * Van Wylen Library