Calvin’s Hekman Library will partner with the Calvin physical plant to repurpose a number of books, both hardback and paperback, within its collection.

Calvin’s Hekman Library will partner with the Calvin physical plant to repurpose a number of books, both hardback and paperback, within its collection.

Hekman Library repurposes collection from Calvin College on Vimeo.

Calvin’s Hekman Library will partner with the Calvin physical plant to repurpose a number of books, both hardback and paperback, within its collection.

For many of these books, repurposing has already begun. The mulched books will provide locally-sourced, inexpensive insulation for the college’s many buildings. “We’re always looking for new ways to both contain Calvin’s energy costs and leverage our many local, bio-degradable resources,” says Bob Speelman, a physical plant supervisor with knowledge of the project. “This is really a win-win.”

The program will also free up valuable space in the Hekman Library facility. “It’s actually win-win-win,” explains Kathy De Mey, Hekman‘s reference librarian. “Books take up significantly less space online, and it’s a great opportunity for us to weed our collection.”

Which books will soon fill the walls? That’s confidential, says De Mey. “A lot of times we just follow our gut feelings about a book.”

The repurposing program will take place throughout the summer, say college officials. “The books? I don’t think most students will miss them,” adds Diane Vander Pol, Hekman’s documents librarian.

Learn More

Explore the bloated Hekman Library collection online using Webcat.

Discover the mission of the Hekman.

Find out how to repurpose your own oversized collection of books.

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