Can University of Minnesota alumni check out books or use interlibrary loan services?


There are several options available for University of Minnesota alumni to obtain borrowing privileges (detailed below). However, University Libraries' interlibrary loan services (borrowing from other institutions materials that are not owned at the University) are reserved for University of Minnesota, Twin Cities campus students, faculty, and staff only. This restriction is largely based on the extraordinary costs of providing these services. Please consult your local public library to explore interlibrary loan services that they may provide.


Here are several ways in which U of M alumni may obtain borrowing privileges from the University Libraries:

You may obtain an application for a special privilege borrower's card at any major library circulation desk or on the web at Completed applications, accompanied by proper documentation, as defined on the application, must be submitted to:

Borrowing Privileges & Fines Unit 110 Wilson Library University of Minnesota Mpls., MN 55455
or faxed to: (612) 626-8968
  1. Join the Friends of the Library. See the Friend's web site for more details:


  2. Join the University of Minnesota Alumni Association (UMAA) (if you aren't a member already), which provides library borrowing privilege options for its members. Current UMAA members may join Friends of the Library (listed above) at a reduced rate and receive a borrowing card. Please also note that lifetime and multi-year MAA members who have memberships before Sept. 1, 1999 will get cards free. For more information on the University of Minnesota Alumni Association and how to join, see their web site at:
    Information about options for library use on the Alumni site is found at: UMAA Membership >> Member Rewards>>Come Back to Campus and states: UMAA members get 50% off borrowing privileges at the U of M Libraries. Normally $80.00, UMAA members can purchase privileges for $40.00. For more information, visit the Library web site, or call 612-624-0303.
  3. Qualify for Special Borrowing Privileges. Those who qualify for this card include:
    • Businesses (including those who are self-employed) and nonprofit organizations.
    • Faculty of other accredited institutions of higher education.
    • Graduate students of other accredited institutions that are *not* members of the MINITEX or CLIC library networks.
    • Minnesota State University students.
  4. For more information, call (612) 624-3321 during business hours, M-F, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., or send email to

Finally, please note that membership in the Alumni Association allows you to borrow books from the University Libraries, but membership does not include remote access to licensed library resources. In addition, although the University currently keeps student email accounts active (at no charge) for up to 5 years after the last registration, this extension of email privileges does not include remote access to licensed library resources either. Although alumni are not eligible to access restricted library resources remotely, the Libraries welcome alumni to use the University Libraries' collections, most databases, and most facilities on-site. One does not need a card or pass to enter and use the Libraries.


Return to the FAQ Home Page