Section 1: Introduction

Colleges and universities are among the most influential of American institutions. It is within educational institutions that much of the examination of ideas and ideals of our evolving culture takes place. Social and technical innovations are often the products of classrooms and laboratories. Modern institutions, including colleges and universities, have acknowledged their responsibility to preserve records that document institutional policies, procedures, and activities. They do this for a variety of administrative, legal, financial, and historical reasons. Records of these activities provide guidance to today's administrators, faculty, staff, and students, and insights for researchers of the future.

The Bentley Historical Library serves as the University of Michigan archives. The Bentley's University Archives and Records Program (UARP) staff administers, preserves, and services the university's records including: records generated by administrative and academic units; records generated by committees, commissions, and governance organizations, both faculty and student; records which document events, athletic and cultural activities, campus organizations, residential units, and other aspects of campus life; and records generated by alumni activities. The archives also collects records of organizations related to the university and selected personal and professional papers of university faculty, staff, students, and alumni.

The UARP staff has prepared this manual to help university units maintain well-organized active files and to anticipate the transfer of appropriate inactive university records to the archives. Questions about the policies and procedures described in this manual should be directed to the University Archives and Records Program, Bentley Historical Library, 1150 Beal, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-2113, Telephone: 734 764-3482, Fax: 734 936-1333.

UARP Records Policy and Procedures Manual - January 1993, 1st ed.,
September 2002, 2nd ed.