Archives and Special Collections

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Collection Policy

This document establishes the framework within which the archives program functions. All practices and procedures in the archives are in accordance with this policy. The university archivist is responsible for drafting the initial policy as well as future amendments. This policy has been approved by the officers of the university. A resolution establishing the archives of Pacific Lutheran University was adopted by the Board of Regents on September 8, 1967. The proper name is The University Archives.

The archivist has the authority to negotiate for the transfer of records from all university offices. This includes the authority to accept custody of confidential university records.

The mission of The University Archives is to appraise, collect, preserve, organize, describe, and make available non-current university records of permanent administrative, legal, fiscal, and historical value.

The University Archives is an administrative department of Mortvedt Library. The responsibility for the management and development of The University Archives rests with the archivist under
the delegated authority of the Associate Provost for Information and Technology Services. The ultimate responsibility for The University Archives rests with the officers of the university.



Types of Materials Collected

  1. Formats
    The archival collection includes types of materials which are normally found in university archives.These include university records, books, faculty publications, newspapers, yearbooks, catalogs, class schedules, brochures, bulletins, newsletters, news releases, clippings, scrapbooks, personal papers, oral histories, photographs, slides, filmstrips, motion pictures, videotapes, compact discs, phonodiscs, tape recordings, manuscripts, blueprints, drawings, and other ephemera. Both original material and facsimiles (including microprints) are collected. Artifacts and works of art, more appropriate for a museum, are not normally collected.
  2. Electronic records have the same retention periods as printed records and should not be handled differently.  
  3. Subject Coverage
    The archival collection is limited to materials relating to Pacific Lutheran Academy, College, University, and all other incorporated bodies such as Spokane College and Columbia College. The collection includes the following:

    1. Records of the Board of Regents including agendas and minutes of meetings, correspondence, reports, and subject files.
    2. Records of university officers including agendas and minutes of meetings, correspondence, reports, and subject files.
    3. Records of administrative offices including agendas and minutes of meetings, correspondence, reports, and subject files.
    4. Records of academic and departmental offices including agendas and minutes of meetings, correspondence, reports, and subject files.
    5. Records of academic programs which have university-wide application or significance, including selected syllabi.
    6. Faculty governance records including agendas and minutes of faculty meetings, memoranda and reports of the entire faculty and its committees, including as hoc committees.
    7. Accreditation reports and supporting documents.
    8. Annual budget and audit reports.
    9. All publications, newspapers, newsletters, brochures, or others which are distributed on a university-wide basis including catalogs, special bulletins, yearbooks, student newspapers, university directories, faculty/staff rosters, and faculty and university newsletters (including alumni publications).
    10. All books published by the Pacific Lutheran University Press.
    11. Faculty publications dealing with the history of the university, Scandinavia, and the Lutheran Church.
    12. All presidential publications.
    13. Biographical files of faculty members and administrators.
    14. Alumni records including agendas, minutes, and correspondence of the alumni association and the alumni office.
    15. Records of the registrar including time tables and class schedules, student transcripts, enrollment reports, graduation rosters, and other reports issued on an annual basis.
    16. Reports of the office of Institutional Research.
    17. Records of student organizations including agendas and minutes of meetings, and correspondence.
    18. Records which document university events including festivities honoring a visitor to campus being given an honorary degree or presidential medal, lectures, concerts, recitals, stage productions, and activities in connections with visitors to campus.
    19. Records which document the fundraising activities of the university.
    20. Records which document the physical facilities of the university.
    21. Records which document the quality and type of student who attends PLU.
    22. Personal papers of key administrators such as the president and officers, members of the Board of Regents, of prominent faculty members, and others closely associated with the university.



Transfer or Donation of Records to the Archives

For the university records, the transfer of records is managed via retention schedules mutually agreed upon by the office in question and by the archivist.

For personal papers, donations are documented by a written receipt and donor agreement specifying the conditions of transfer with regard to legal title, restrictions on access, literary rights, and authority to weed.

An accession register is maintained recording the date, title, office, bulk, condition of record(s), and any restrictions on access.

It is the obligation of the university to care for these records permanently and to provide proper facilities and procedures to ensure the preservation of records transferred. When records are transferred to The University Archives, they become the property of the archives.



Arrangement and Description

It is the responsibility of the archivist to arrange materials which have been transferred to the archives according to the recognized archival principles of provenance and original order.

Where no apparent order exists, the order should be determined by the potential uses.

Records in all formats are clearly labeled with the name and number of the record group, the box and folder number, and the name of the university archives.