About the Library

A member of the Hope community since 1988, the Van Wylen Library serves as a vibrant center of intellectual and cultural life at Hope College by assuming a significant educational role in a college community committed to excellence in learning and teaching. The library provides an inviting atmosphere, access to numerous print and digital materials, and innovative technologies and services to deliver information and scholarly resources to patrons.

Contact Us
  • Chat or text: You can Ask a Librarian at any time the library is open.
  • Walk-in assistance: Stop by the Research Help Desk on the first floor of the library.
  • Schedule a research consultation: For in-depth help, we recommend that you schedule an appointment in advance. Just fill out this form and a librarian will get in touch with you. Individuals and small groups are welcome.
  • Phone: Call 616-395-7904 to speak with a Research Help Desk attendant. Call 616-395-7905 to ask about your library account or to renew materials.
  • Email: Send general questions to askalibrarian@hope.edu. For questions about library accounts, fines or overdues, contact hopecirc@hope.edu.
  • Liaison librarians: Faculty can contact their liaison librarian for research assistance, collection development suggestions and help in identifying resources to support their curriculum.
Staff Listings
Room Finder

To reserve a room, visit events.hope.edu and submit a request.

Group Study Rooms

Group Study Rooms are for the use of Hope College students studying together. Two or more people constitute a group. Groups have priority over individual users. Larger groups may not displace smaller groups. Groups not affiliated with the college may not displace Hope College students.

To reserve a Group Study Room, call 395-7790 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday–Friday, or email Patti Carlson at carlsonp@hope.edu.

Maps & Floor Plans

Our materials are arranged by the Library of Congress call number system. Use the floor plans below to orient yourself and find particular subjects.

Directions & Parking

Parking is available along 10th Street and along College Avenue. City parking lots are available along 9th and 7th streets. All parking is free of charge.

Driving directions from east of Holland

  • From I-196, take exit 55
  • Travel west on Business-196 for six miles
  • Continue straight, road changes name to 8th Street
  • Turn left on College Avenue
  • Library is two blocks south on right

Driving directions from south of Holland

  • From I-196, take left exit 44 for US-31
  • In three miles, take left exit 47B (Downtown Holland)
  • Follow Washington/Michigan/River avenues north to 10th Street
  • Turn right on 10th Street
  • Library is two blocks east on right


Van Wylen Library is guided by the following policies.

Cup & Chaucer Café

The Cup & Chaucer provides an area to gather and study in a café-like atmosphere. It is located in the lobby of Van Wylen Library and managed by Hope College Dining Services. The Cup & Chaucer offers Simpatico coffee, bottled beverages, snacks and a variety of fresh-baked goods, including Good Earth bagels. Please see Dining Services' Coffee and Concessions for more information. You can reserve the room using the Event Management System.

Interesting Facts
  • The library is named for Hope College’s ninth president, Dr. Gordon J. Van Wylen, and his wife, Dr. Margaret D. Van Wylen.
  • Van Wylen Library has five floors (92,000 square feet) and seats 695.
  • The project’s architect was the firm of Shepley Bulfinch Richardson and Abbott of Boston, Massachusetts.
  • The building was completed in 1988 and received an Award of Excellence for Library Architecture from the 1989 Library Buildings Award Jury of the American Institute of Architects.
  • The ghost of a man in 19th century clothes is sometimes spotted in the Rare Books Room.
  • The ACRL Excellent Library Award was presented to Hope College in 2004.
  • The staff teaches an average of 185 research education sessions each year.