Document Type


Presentation Date


Conference Name

Hope Academy of Senior Professionals (HASP)

Conference Location

Hope College, Holland, MI


When the Van Wylen Library opened in January of 1988, it was a beautiful state-of -the-art academic library. Designed by Shepley, Bulfinch, Richardson and Abbott of Boston, it was awarded the Award of Excellence for Library Architecture from the American Institute of Architects. It had moved to an automated library information system (ILS) including an online catalog, the year it opened and was designed based on the latest technology of the time. We all know, what has happened in the 25 years since. The age of digital information has hurtled us down a path of change, so revolutionary, so fast that many have predicted that libraries will cease to exit. While the reports of our demise have been greatly exaggerated, academic libraries have changed dramatically in the past 25 years. This presentation gives an overview of the physical, technological and social changes that have kept the Van Wylen Library an exceptional academic library in the 21st century.