Access and Visitor Information for the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center
Address and Contact Information
3420 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206
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Accessibility information: See Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center homepage
For all Library Visitors
Weekdays until 6 p.m.
To enter the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center, visitors must show a valid PennCard or a current, valid government or school-issued photo ID that contains an expiration date.
Registered courtesy borrowers must show their library-issued borrower's card and a valid photo ID.
Visitors who do not hold a PennCard and who are not a member of an affiliated institution will be asked to sign in. A copy of their identification documents will be made and a visitor badge will be issued. The information obtained from the ID will be used only for security and/or law enforcement purposes when necessary.
Evenings after 6 p.m., weekends, and holidays
Patrons must show identification in one of the following categories:
Valid PennCard or Penn Alumni Card.
Library Courtesy Card accompanied by a valid photo ID.
Valid photo ID from Drexel, Bryn Mawr, Haverford, Swarthmore, a BorrowDirect Plus Partner, or a Research Libraries Group Shares Member.
An institutional ID from HUP, CHOP, Pennsylvania or Presbyterian Hospitals, or a hospital affiliate of the University of Pennsylvania Health System.
Another valid photo ID (if attending an even or visiting an exhibit)
Sponsored guests using a specific collection must display a valid photo ID, as well as have a guest pass sent to the security desk ahead of time. If a researcher is traveling to Penn to use one of the library's unique collections, they must get their library liaison to fill out a guest pass for them. See the Directory of Subject Specialists to contact a library liaison.
Development officers who wish to bring a guest to the library weekday evenings or on the weekend should ensure that their guests bring a valid photo ID.
Goldstein Undergraduate Study Center
The Goldstein Undergraduate Study Center (USC) is the only library facility open 24 hours Monday through Thursday (fall and spring semesters only) to all Penn students, faculty, and staff.
Check the USC hours page for starting and ending days for overnight hours, which generally begin two weeks into the semester.
Use the main entrance to the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center.
Penn students, faculty, and staff must show a valid PennCard.
Visitors are required to provide a valid photo ID.
Before 10 p.m.: Access is not restricted.
After 10 p.m.: Access is restricted to patrons with PennCards, Library Courtesy Cards, and Drexel IDs.
After 11 p.m.: The use of the Goldstein Undergraduate Study Center is restricted to Penn faculty, staff and students. Please note: Holders of Penn Alumni Cards do not have overnight access to the Goldstein Undergraduate Study Center.
After midnight: Enter through the ground floor entrance directly into the Goldstein USC.
Weekends and Holidays
Patrons must show a valid PennCard or Penn Alumni Card, a Library Courtesy Card, or a valid photo ID from Drexel, Bryn Mawr, Haverford, Swarthmore, or a Research Libraries Group Shares Member ID.
For Penn Alumni
Alumni are encouraged to obtain a Penn Alumni Card, which will provide unrestricted access to Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center, excluding 24 hour access to Goldstein Undergraduate Study Center.
For additional information about securing a Penn Alumni Card, visit the PennCard website.
For Guests of Penn Students
Penn students who wish to bring guests into the library weekday evenings or on the weekend must request a Visitor’s Pass in advance of the visit. Please email Access Services at email@example.com during Access Services office hours (Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) and we will direct your request to the appropriate department. Requests can also be made via telephone to the Van Pelt Library Circulation Department at 215-898-7566 Monday–Friday before 4:30 p.m.
For Children of Penn Faculty, Staff, and Students
Children may enter the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center when accompanied by a parent or guardian with a valid ID as described above. Children in the Library Center must remain accompanied by their parent or guardian at all times.
For Elementary, Middle, and High School Students
The Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center is not open for use by individual elementary, middle, or high school students. Students who need to use depository documents should read about access here.
For Prospective Students and their Families
The library welcomes prospective Penn students and their families to visit the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center. To make arrangements, please send a request or phone 215-898-7555.
Restricted Access During Reading Days and Finals
When student demand for library facilities is at its peak, individuals who are not affiliated with the University will not have access to Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center. During Reading Days and Final Exam Periods at the close of each semester (fall semester: December; spring semester: April/May), access will be limited to individuals who hold one of the following valid, non-expired pieces of identification:
PennCard (including Penn Development Officers and their guests)
an Institutional ID from HUP, CHOP, Pennsylvania or Presbyterian Hospitals
a Penn Alumni Card
a Library Courtesy Card
a University Photo ID from a BorrowDirect Plus partner or other reciprocal borrowing institutions