The Albert Pick Music Library of the School of Music is getting replaced by a $10 million building, thanks to an 85 percent donation from Marta and L. Austin Weeks, two “music-passionate people” who have contributed to UM in the past.
The couple also donated the L. Austin Weeks Center for Recording and Performance and are also responsible for the Marta and L. Austin Weeks Music Scholarship Endowment, a scholarship that provides aid to 20 students each year.
The 15,300-square foot library will be three times the size of the current library, and will include an advanced technology center on the lower floor in order for students to have access to new state-of-the art equipment.
The technology center will have six labs, each servicing a specific program: media-writing and production lab, music engineering lab, two computer labs, a multimedia instruction and learning lab and electronic and computer music lab.
Though useful to students, the current library is too small to accommodate all of the students, and to fit all of the resources and material that students need.
“I think the current library, while resourceful, is a bit too cramped, and a newer, maybe more attractive library would benefit the music school a lot ,” Jon Ziemba, freshman and music engineering major, said.
According to School of Music staff and faculty, the new establishment will no longer have problems with space. The current music library is not big enough to fit all the collections of books; therefore many of them are stored at Richter Library.
“Some students didn’t like walking to Richer to get their books; now everything will be in one place” William Hipp, dean of the School of Music, said.
The new music library will be home to a number of collections of books, scores, recording collections, and computer facilities. The top floor will be a reading room, with glass windows that will face Lake Osceola.
School of Music administration says the state-of-the-art equipment will not only accommodate the new labs and books but will also encourage students to make use of what it has to offer.
Although the library is expected to be ready for next year, students seem to be concerned with the construction of the building.
“Construction hasn’t even begun, and it was supposed to start June 2003, and used by Spring of 2004,” Richard Uhler, a music education major, said. “Now they tell us construction will begin very soon.”
Although the groundbreaking ceremony for the new music library was held on Apr. 9, 2003, and was attended by more than 300 students and faculty including President Shalala, construction has not begun, nor has a specific date for construction been given, but bids for construction are scheduled to begin next week.
For more information, call the Albert Pick Music Library at 305-284-2429.
The Miami Hurricane will continue to follow the progress of the music library and report on any developments as information becomes available.
Vanessa Krause can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.