WSU Libraries to reopen on July 12

Fall operating hours still being decided, masks not required for vaccinated individuals



WSU Libraries have been closed since March 2020.

ANDREA GONZALEZ, Evergreen reporter

WSU Libraries will reopen on July 12 with limited COVID-19 restrictions.

The libraries’ operating hours for the fall semester have not been decided, said Beth Blakesley, WSU Libraries associate dean. Data collected before the pandemic will be used to determine the hours WSU Libraries will operate in the fall. 

The libraries’ COVID-19 policies during the summer and fall semester will reflect those of the state, Blakesley said. People who are unvaccinated are required to wear masks.

WSU Libraries have been closed since March 2020. Employees have worked both on-site and remotely throughout the pandemic, she said. Nobody was laid off or furloughed during the pandemic. Over time, those working remotely will transition back to in-person work.

“There have been people working on-site, all this time,” Blakesley said. “They’ve been the ones who have been putting the books out for pickup service and the ones who have been scanning articles for library loan requests.”

Typically, people can check out books in person and use electronic resources, said Susan Shipman, WSU Libraries access services manager.  However, that was not possible when the libraries closed. 

WSU Libraries will be going back to the physical hold shelf where people can come in to pick up the items that they have requested, Shipman said. 

Individuals will be able to request books online and pick them up in person once the libraries reopen, she said. During the pandemic, people were mailed books they requested, which is a service that will continue as well.

Holland & Terrell Libraries offered contactless pick up at nearby lockers throughout the pandemic, Shipman said. This service will continue because of its popularity. 

“Contactless pickup in the lockers is available 24 hours a day, all the time, so people who may not be able to get to the library… can still have a way to get their material when they want to pick it up,” she said. 

WSU Libraries provided virtual reference services in the past, but they became more popular during the pandemic. Blakesley said reference services help library patrons find the information they need in the library. Virtual and in-person reference services will be provided in the fall.

Shipman said during the summer, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, Holland & Terrell Libraries will be open. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, Owen Science and Engineering Library will be open. 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, the Animal Health Library will be open.