Rathskeller sounds off on acoustics issue

When students return from spring break, they will find the University of Miami’s Rathskeller to be echo-free.

The Rat’s acoustic issue has affected programs such as musical acts, Trivia Tuesdays and the Alma Mater preliminary round during Homecoming Week. While the Rat closes for the break, the acoustics will be improved.

“I’m aware that we’ve had limited capability to have programs in there this year,” said Pat Whitely, vice president for student affairs.

When the Student Activities Center was being built, it seemed that the acoustic treatment at the Rat was not planned.

“If we can get this issue addressed, we can do everything we have wanted to do at the Rat,” Whitely said.

With regards to how the Rathskeller’s acoustics will be improved, “we have a plan in progress,” said Julie Earl, chair for RAB.

The details of that plan are still being discussed.

According to Earl, the ceiling will be redesigned using the same fabric that was installed in the Student Activities Center’s ballrooms, which are located on the third floor.

The fabric also ensures that the Rat’s design is not altered, Earl said.

As of now, events such as the weekly Trivia Tuesdays have been held outside. During Trivia Tuesdays, students get together to answer questions for a chance to win a Rat gift card.

Once the acoustics are fixed, this event and many others like musical performances and comedians’ routines can be held inside.

Although the acoustics have not warded off anyone from hanging out or eating at the Rat, students have noticed it isn’t the same.

“I remember I couldn’t understand much from the Alma Mater competition, and I was standing right in front of the stage,” sophomore Christian Perez said.

Other students who play pool regularly, like freshman Hugo Montero, have not noticed much of the acoustics except when there is an event going on.

“Whenever I play pool with my friends and there’s an event, it’s hard to hear what’s going on and sometimes even what someone near me is saying,” he said.