As a Hope Student you can get a card for Holland's public library, the Herrick District Library, using your Hope ID and another form of ID like a driver's license. When you first visit Herrick you will be asked to log in to KnowHope Plus and show them your Hope address in order to verify residency.
Herrick is a wealth of fantastic print and digital resources that are of a more popular focus, along with local history. For some of your historic figures in the arts, media, and sports you may find more biographies in their collection than at Van Wylen.
Still looking for ideas for notable figures to research? Consider browsing on of these electronic biographical dictionaries in a discipline/topic that interests you!
Biographical Dictionaries and Encyclopedias in Credo Reference
Another Wikipedia alternative! Search your individual in
Beyond the books placed on reserve for your class you can locate broader secondary book resources in Van Wylen's collection by searching Primo. Keep in mind that these will more likely inform you of your topic at the state or national level, rather than Hope.
Good place to start: browse this list of titles that include the Subject Heading "Education, Higher -- United States -- History" to see print and ebook titles that address the history of higher education. Consider adding a broad keyword related to your topic to the lower search box to narrow it.