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Access & Policies


Access to view archival materials will be available during the Library open hours or by appointment. Prior notice of at least four hours during normal working hours must be given so items can be prepared ahead of time. Access is provided by the Archivist/Assistant Archivist to students and staff of the College and the community at large.

Limitation on Access

 Access to materials may be restricted by condition of gift or deposit; because of their physical condition; or for other reasons.

  1. College records that are restricted based on FERPA or the college policy will be made available only to the office, department, or committee of origin and the Staff of the College Archives/Special Collections.
  2. Private donors who have imposed time frame restrictions will have access to their collection. Private donors will not be granted access to other collections that have restrictions.
  3. Unprocessed archival collections will be restricted from general research until they are inventoried and stabilized. The office, department, committee or donor may have access their donation as long as they do not remove any material.

Reproduction and Media Use Fee Schedule

Digital reproductions of select materials for personal/research use only are available to researchers for a fee. Researchers will pay the current College rate for black and white copies. Scans can be made of select materials and emailed directly to the researcher. Commercial, academic press, and other requests to reproduce media must go through owner(s) of the copyright(s). Please complete Letter of Agreement for Publication of Photographic of Photographs & Digital Reproduction from the Archives/special collections/Special Collections.

Acquisition Policy

Acquisition and inclusion of new materials will be a focal point of the Archive, as well as the repository of artifacts & materials from its inception to present day.

  1. The Archive seeks to acquire records as a loan pending copying of the records or as outright gifts. No records will be accepted without an Archive Donation/Loan Agreement. The Archive is not in a position to purchase archive material. (Complete Archival Donor or Transfer form)
  2. Wherever possible the Archive’s works to establish intellectual property rights, and in particular seeks to acquire the right to copy archival material for preservation and access purposes.
  3. Classified materials that pertain to the history of the College will be marked restricted and only available to patrons who have been granted permission by the administrative body under whose department the materials belonged in accordance to college policy and FERPA.
  4. Donors may restrict materials for a certain number of years (e.g. 25 years) and will only be available to the donor(s) or patrons who have received permission from the donor or their representative. It is up to the patron to contact the donor to acquire the permission.
  5. Where records are damaged and require extensive conservation and preservation resources, it may only be possible for the Archive to take them if funding is available to ensure their physical preservation.
  6. Materials acquired by the Archive will be retained and preserved in accordance with the Archive Donation/Loan Agreement. Those materials deemed unworthy of retention will be disposed of in accordance with the Agreement and/or the Deaccession Policy.
  7. Records which do not match this Policy may exceptionally be acquired if there is a clear relationship with the activity of the College. This maybe done with the agreement of the Archivist/Assistant Archivist and the Library Coordinator.

    Deaccession Policy

    1. The Archivist/Assistant Archivist will make a list of all items to be deaccessioned and will inform the Library Coordinator/Director of said list prior to deaccession. The following information must accompany each item listed:
      1. Brief description of each item
      2. Name of donor/co-owner, if known
      3. Proposed means of disposition
      4. Reasons for suggested disposition.
    2. Guidelines for deaccessioning items will be as follows:
      1. Items that do not fit within the defined mission of the Archive/Special Collections.
      2. Unnecessary duplicates – more than are required for exhibit or study.
      3. Items that have been deteriorated to the point that they are useless for exhibit or study and would not be cost-effective to restore.
      4. Items in fragmentary condition, impossible and excessively expensive to restore.
    3. Items approved for disposal will be disposed of as follows:
      1. Returned to donor and/or department if indicated to do so on the donation form.
      2. Donation to co-author or co-publisher if able to locate.
      3. Donation to students or staff at Muskegon Community College.
      4. Alternative repositories will be identified and contacted to acquire if record transfer would be possible for said records.
      5. Destruction, if necessary.
    4. Reasonable efforts will be made to limit the potential negative impact to researchers of the loss of information
    5. All pertinent data on each object donated or destroyed must be recorded and information regarding the transaction must be kept and recorded by the Archivist/Assistant Archivist. All marks identifying any object with the Archive and/or Muskegon Community College must be removed.

    To learn how to donate and view the archival collection, follow the guidelines put forth in the Donating to and Using the MCC Archive Libguide