Many institutional repositories have pursued a mixed metadata environment, relying on description by multiple workflows. Strategies may include metadata converted from other systems, metadata elicited from the document creator or manager, and metadata created by library or repository staff. Additional editing or proofing may or may not occur. The mixed environment brings challenges of creation, management, and access. In this article, repository efforts at three major universities are discussed. All three repositories run on the DSpace software package, and the opportunities and limitations of that system will be examined. The authors discuss local strategies in light of current thinking on metadata creation, user behavior, and the aggregation of heterogeneous metadata. The contrasts between the mission of each repository effort will show the importance of local customization, while the experience of all three institutions forms the basis for recommendations on strategies of benefit to a wide range of librarians and repository planners.