About the Library
Penrose Library: An Educational Partner
Penrose Library serves as a bridge between the Whitman College community—students, faculty, administration, and staff—and the information resources that promote teaching, research and learning. The library’s mission is to provide access to a diverse collection of resources to support faculty and student research and learning, and to guide students through the research process, helping them develop critical thinking skills, synthesize information, and communicate the results of intellectual inquiry.
How does Penrose Library, consistently ranked highly by the Princeton Review, accomplish this mission? The library’s digital environment, with more than 40,000 unique journal titles and 160 databases, complements its 500,000-volume print collection. Penrose is one of only a few college libraries that are open 24/7, and the facility itself was built and renovated with the idea that form follows function. Penrose’s archives and special collections include 3,500 linear feet of archival and manuscript material and over 5,000 rare books. And Whitman College is a member of the Orbis Cascade Alliance, which combines the assets of academic libraries throughout the Northwest to provide free access and courier delivery of millions of volumes.
Penrose Mission and Values Statement
Penrose Library serves as a bridge between the Whitman College community—students, faculty, administration, and staff—and the information resources that promote teaching, research and learning in the spirit and mission of the College.
Penrose Library Guiding Principles
We are a liberal arts college library that supports our undergraduate curriculum and facilitates access to resources for faculty research. In partnership with the faculty and staff, the Library staff selects, builds, preserves and offers access to diverse print and digital collections. Together we guide students through the research process, helping them develop the critical thinking skills to conduct research, synthesize information, and communicate the results of intellectual inquiry. Whether interacting with students in the classroom, one-on-one, or through electronic communications, we carefully assess students’ information, technological and educational needs and advise them appropriately.
An intellectual and social center of campus, the Library is conducive to individual study, reflection, and collaborative work. The Library’s physical spaces provide access to collections which encourage creativity and exploration in a technologically and aesthetically inviting environment. We welcome all members of the Whitman College community into the Library.
We value our flexibility, accuracy, accessibility and resourcefulness in providing quality innovative user-centered services. We seek opportunities for professional development, and we form partnerships on and off campus to extend our services and resources beyond the physical library and to enhance our skills and knowledge. A collegial working atmosphere is provided for all Library staff.
Penrose Library Values Statement
We value relationships and are committed to building a cooperative, supportive, and open community. We work together to enact policies that help ensure the well-being of our community members and also prudently manage Penrose Library’s physical and digital assets.
We challenge and engage each other in respectful, thoughtful ways as we develop our critical thinking skills. We act with empathy and kindness to instill mutual trust and we recognize the contributions of all employees to our shared goals.
We strive for authenticity and accountability in our relationships with others. By our actions we evidence a shared responsibility and commitment to justice, service, and excellence. We act with humility and patience.
We motivate and inspire others to pursue learning and knowledge. We believe freedom to pursue continued training and professional development is crucial for all members of our community.
Diversity and Inclusion
We seek to learn with others with diverse experiences, backgrounds, and perspectives. We recognize that diversity makes our institution stronger.
Embracing Challenge and Change
We see change as an opportunity. We are willing to accept new challenges, to take risks, to champion equality, and to seek out new solutions and new paths.
Privacy and Confidentiality
We stand behind our users’ rights to privacy and confidentiality. We support the safety and freedom of inquiry for all.
Archives and Special Collections
Roger Stelk, Head of Collection Management — 509-527-5909
Rich Pengra, Library Assistant, Collection Development — 509-527-5912
Paige Morfitt, Digital Assets and Metadata Librarian — 509-527-5920
Rika Groff, Library Assistant, Cataloging — 509-527-5919
Julianne Hoppen, Library Assistant, Serials — 509-527-5913
Instructional, Research, and Access Services
Lee Keene, Head of Research, Instruction, and Assessment — 509-527-5917
Julie Carter, Head of User Services — 509-527-5915
Amy Blau, Scholarly Communications Librarian — 509-527-4905
Jen Pope, Access Services Manager — 509-527-5914
Christel Holce, Circulation Supervisor (Weekday Evenings) — 509-527-5192
Juan Prado, Circulation Supervisor (Weekend Days) — 509-527-5192
Tim Odeen, Circulation Supervisor (Weekend Evenings) — 509-527-5192
Tom Call, Circulation Supervisor (Weekend Nights) — 509-527-5192
Emily Barron, Circulation Supervisor (Weekday Nights) — 509-527-5192
Kun Lin, Systems and Applications Librarian — 509-527-5916
Penrose Library by the numbers
Here are some interesting numbers about Penrose Library. You could find more detailed statistics in Library Dashboard page.
During the academic year, Penrose Library is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to the Whitman community.You will need your Whitman ID to access the building between 9 pm and 9 am.
Whitman Archives is open Monday – Friday between 10 am – 12 pm and 1-4 pm, and by appointment. It is closed on college holidays.
Café 41 is open Sunday – Thursday from 8pm – 1am.
Non-Whitman community members can visit the library between 9 am and 9 pm.
Gifts to Penrose Library
Gifts to Penrose Library are very welcomed and valued. Through the generous support of friends and alumni, donations to the Library have helped build outstanding collections. Gifts, often those that memorialize or honor loved ones, continue to help foster the traditions of scholarship, critical thinking, and lifelong learning that are hallmarks of a Whitman education. Modest gifts are very much appreciated, as are bequests, endowments and larger contributions.
The collections at Penrose are carefully selected to provide balanced, vibrant and timely materials that serve to support the curricular and research needs of our faculty and students. In order to safeguard quality, consistency, and relevance to the needs of the College, donated materials are reviewed using these same criteria. Moreover, due to space, staffing, and resource limitations, we are unable to accept all gifts of materials.
Gifts-in-kind, especially library materials, are accepted with the understanding that they become the property of Whitman College. Penrose Library retains the right to decline, retain, or dispose of the materials at its discretion. Only the Library Director, Collection Management Librarian, or Archivist/Special Collections Librarian may accept in-kind donations on behalf of the Library. A signed Gift of Property statement must accompany all such donations.
General Library Materials
We welcome books and media appropriate for the general library collections if they support the College’s curriculum and faculty research needs. The Library does not accept duplicates of held materials, textbooks, outdated or materials in poor condition, mass-market paperback books, general interest magazines, cassette tapes, software, photocopied materials, vanity press books, popular pamphlets or promotional materials. Only commercially produced DVDs in like-new condition will be accepted.
Before bringing gifts of 25 volumes or more to the Library, please contact Roger Stelk, Head of Collection Management (509-527-5909 or [email protected]) to discuss the potential donation. He may also be able to suggest other resources if the potential gift is deemed not appropriate for Penrose Library. Donations are boxed and delivered at the owner’s expense.
Special Collections Materials
Gifts of manuscript collections, rare books, and unique materials, especially those that pertain to Whitman College and northwest regional history, are encouraged. Before such items or materials are donated to the Whitman College and Northwest Archives, please consult with Ben Murphy, Archivist and Special Collections Librarian (509-526-4731 or [email protected]). The Development Office encourages donors to consider providing financial support for the processing and preservation of such donated materials, especially if the collection is of substantial size and/or significance.
Donors are responsible for obtaining an appraisal and consulting with a tax advisor in order to obtain such information. Generally, gifts with a declared value over $5,000 will require an independent qualified appraisal; those with a declared value over $500 will require that the donor file IRS Tax Form 8283. Please read IRS publications 526 and 561 for more information.
Appraisers may be located through the American Society of Appraisers, the Antiquarian Booksellers Association, or the Appraisers’ Association of America. If you wish to have an appraisal conducted, please do so before donating the materials to Whitman College’s Penrose Library.
All gifts will be acknowledged by letter with a count of the donated items. The Library does not provide a detailed, title-by-title listing.
Generally, gifts for which the donor places restrictions on access are not accepted. Exceptions may be made, for a limited time, for certain sensitive materials donated to Whitman College and Northwest Archives. Penrose Library abides by the American Library Association/Society of American Archivists’ 1994 Joint Statement on Access to Original Research Materials.
Donated items that Whitman College’s Penrose Library retains are cataloged and listed in the Library’s catalog. Access to other materials will be governed by established library policies. Materials added to the general collections are interfiled with like books on the same subject. Separately named collections are not maintained.
Monetary gifts, especially those that would enable the purchase of new materials, the delivery of innovative services, additional furnishings, technology enhancements, or the support of special program areas are actively encouraged. Please contact Dalia Corkrum, Library Director (509-527-5193 or [email protected]) or John Bogley, Vice President for Development and College Relations (509-527-5979 or [email protected]) for more information.
Please contact Dalia Corkrum, Library Director (509-527-5193 or [email protected]) if you have any questions or wish to discuss a specific donation.
Below are the positions for which students are usually employed at Penrose Library. Jobs will be posted on Handshake before the beginning of the semester as they become available. Please apply directly through the Handshake website and refer to the specific postings for more information.
- Archives Assistant
- Cataloging / Serials Assistant
- Circulation Assistant
- Library Office Assistant
Additional information about student employment can be found on the Student Employment page on the College’s website.
Location and Directions
345 Boyer Avenue
Walla Walla, WA 99362
Penrose Library is located at the heart of the Whitman College campus. On the campus map below, we are building 40, to the left of Ankeny Field. Parking is available, both on street and in the lot off Park Street.