Beginning Monday, Oct. 16, the Rathskeller common area, but not the restaurant, will be open until midnight on Monday through Thursday nights. The Rat previously closed at 9:00 p.m. on these days. This extension is part of a larger initiative spearheaded by Willem Anderson, senior business major and senator, to open the Rathskeller on weekends and potentially have student-workers manage the facility’s operations.
On Monday, Oct. 9, Dr. Gregory Roper, dean of students, Casey Teng, dining services general manager, Moey Brown, director of student activities, Benjamin Gibbs, assistant vice president of operations, and Luke Enriquez, junior politics major and senator, met in Roper’s office to discuss this change in the Rat’s hours. The primary concerns discussed were security and student compliance.
“The most important issues for the students to know, in Mr. Teng’s eyes, are that a) trash is picked up and the area is left clean at the end of the night, b) any furniture moved around is put back in its original configuration, and c) there be absolutely, positively no damage, vandalism, or theft,” said Roper.
Enriquez, whose efforts were crucial to bringing back outdoor dining at the Cafe in spring 2022, helped to facilitate negotiations.
“I do think it’s important to highlight in the article less my work than the work of Willem and the supportive presence of Luke Enriquez,” said Roper. “His past (and ongoing) relationship with Mr. Teng was crucial.”
Anderson and Roper hope that this change in the Rat’s hours will be the beginning of even further expanded hours for both the area of the Rat and its food services.
“[O]ne of the most important parts of the meeting was the underlying aspect that further changes could be made, including the further extending of hours and the potential extending of food service hours — in particular the weekend,” said Anderson. “However, outside of the changes being made on Oct. 16, nothing is set in stone and all future changes are unofficial. But it was made clear that the response of the student body would have an effect on future changes.”