For Community Members

The Lydia M. Olson Library is open to the public. Community members are welcome to visit, browse our materials and utilize various technologies. If using an Olson Library workstation, you will have access to all database and journal subscriptions. Additionally, headphones are available at the Public Services desk.

Community Borrower Card Program


What are the benefits? 

Community Borrower cardholders can borrow materials from the Lydia M. Olson Library’s circulating collections. Some restrictions apply. See below for items that are eligible for checkout.

What items are available for checkout?

General Items

  Students & Staff Faculty, Graduate Assistants, NMU Retirees Community Borrower Cardholders
Books and Government Documents 1 semester 1 semester 5 weeks
Media 14 days 14 days 14 days
Journals/Magazines Not eligible for checkout 1 week Not eligible for checkout
Reserve Material Varies Varies Not eligible for checkout
ASNMU Bike Share Currently unavailable Currently unavailable Not eligible for checkout
Board Games 3 days 3 days Not eligible for checkout
Locker 1 semester 1 semester Not eligible for checkout
Rooms 2 hours 2 hours Not eligible for checkout

Equipment Items

Laptop Chargers 24 hours 24 hours Not eligible for checkout
Phone Chargers 24 hours 24 hours Not eligible for checkout
Camera & Tripods 7 days 7 days Not eligible for checkout
Graphing Calculators 24 hours 24 hours Not eligible for checkout
Flash Drives 7 days 7 days Not eligible for checkout


Interlibrary Loan and MeLCat privileges are not extended to Community Borrowers but may be available through local public libraries.  

Most electronic resources are not available offsite to Community Borrowers due to license restrictions but are accessible via Olson Library workstations. Some electronic resources are available offsite to Alumni.


Who Qualifies?

  • Any Upper Peninsula resident aged 14 years or older
  • NMU Alumni
  • NMU graduate students working on a thesis, but not currently enrolled
  • Members of the NMU Board of Trustees
  • Upper Peninsula primary and secondary educators

What is the Cost?

The Community Borrower card has an annual fee of $25. The $25 fee will be waived for the following groups:

  • NMU Alumni
  • Military veterans and active duty personnel
  • Applicants under 18 years of age
  • Currently employed Upper Peninsula elementary and secondary educators
  • Members of the NMU Board of Trustees

How Do I Apply?

Applicants must present a current Michigan driver’s license or state-issued identification card, or two pieces of identification showing place of residence. Applicants under the age of 18 must have a parent present at the time of application.

The Community Borrower membership is valid for one year. Membership may be renewed in person or by contacting library staff via phone at (906) 227-2250 or email at

Terms of Agreement

Community Borrower cardholders, or the parents/legal guardians of cardholders under the age of 18, assume full financial responsibility for all library materials checked out on their accounts. This includes overdue fines, fees, and replacement costs for any overdue, lost or damaged items. Cardholders agree to adhere to all NMU policies and regulations. Olson Library reserves the right to refuse to issue or renew a Community Borrower card or cancel a current card if these policies are not observed.


Olson Library does not provide anyone but the cardholder with records identifying library usage. Olson Library does not restrict access to materials or equipment to patrons of any age. Olson Library faculty and staff will not assume the responsibility of determining what materials are appropriate for minors, nor will they place any restrictions on materials accessed with a minor’s card.

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