Frequently Asked Questions

Are you French?

Only in spirit. Most members of French House are not actually French! However, we do share an interest in French Language and Culture.

Do you always/only speak French?

Not all the time--it is up to each member to decide how much or how little French to speak, although we certainly encourage you to use it as much as possible! We're hoping to organize a French-only retreat next year, and our education chair organizes other events to encourage speaking French in the house. If you're looking to practice your French, there are quite a few people in the house who would be happy to speak with you, but if your french vocabulary is limited to 'oui oui baguette' there are also plenty of people who would be happy to help you learn more.

Is French House really a house?

Unfortunately not. French House is located on the east half of the 4th floor of New House.

How does cooking work?

Cooking is organized by the Food Stewards (Ministres des Aliments). We cook 6 nights per week (every day except Saturday). There are 6 cookteams of 5-6 people each, and each cookteam cooks once per week from 4-7pm, a shift which involves cooking, eating, and cleaning. Dinner is always at 6:15pm.

Each member of a cooking team "chefs" about twice a semester, meaning that person is responsible for setting the menu. Menus are approved by the Food Stewards, who also order the ingredients for all of the menus in a given week. This is usually done by placing an order from Roche Bros, but also occasionally by running around to the different grocery stores in town to find anything Roche Bros doesn't carry.

How does the cost of French House dinners compare to the meal plan?

Food Stewards try to keep the cost of each dinner to around $3-4 per person, and you only pay for the meals you actually eat in the house. House bills can be around $600-$700 if you eat most of your dinners with the house. There's often leftovers from dinner which many people take for lunch the next days. 15 weeks * 6 dinners per week = 90 meals per semester, so the equivalent on the meal plan would cost you $1,418 and not include access to bulk ingredients.

What if I'm an athlete?

Athletes get priority for cookteams that don't conflict with their practice schedule. You can also request a garde for any dinner during the week, and food will be saved for you so you can eat after practice.

Do you guys only cook French food?

Nope! We cook whatever the chef that day wants to cook. So it can be French food, but it could also be spaghetti, hot pot, matzo ball soup, gyros, or whatever else you can imagine. The only requirements we have is that there's a starch, a vegetable, a vegetable protein, and a meat protein. Although not a requirement, most menus also include a dessert as well!

Is French House vegan/vegetarian friendly?

Absolutely! We currently have both vegetarians and a vegan living in the house. There will always be vegan and vegetarian options at dinner. Whatever your dietary restrictions or allergies are, we will do our best to accomodate you. However, the French House kitchen is home to 30+ undergrads who all use the same space to cook & eat food, so we cannot guarantee that our spaces will be entirely free of any food allergens. We will never deny anyone a place in our house because of a dietary restriction, but ask that you use your best judgement when deciding if French house would be a safe place for you to live. Of course, if you have any questions about this, please reach out to lmf-rex@mit.edu.

Is French House LGBTQ+ friendly?

Yes, extremely

Will I get a single freshman year?

Most of our freshmen live in doubles, but if you need a single for medical reasons/other restrictions, please let us know during your info session and we'll do our best to accomodate you!

How do I join French House as an incoming freshman?

If you rank us within your top 5 housing preferences, one of our REX chairs will reach out to you to schedule an info session to give you a better sense of the time commitment and other requirements for living in French House. After your info session, they (the REX Chairs) will follow up with instructions on how to confirm your interest in French House with Housing & French House if you're still interested. Any incoming first-year students that go through the info session and confirm afterward that they're still interested in living in French House will be considered as part of the Housing Lottery.

Our space is limited - only typically have 5-8 spots for freshmen every year, but even if you don't end up in French House your first semester there's still many ways to stay involved with our community, and we'd love to have you around!

I'm living in French House next year! Should I bring any kitchen supplies with me?

If you'd like to have your own set of tupperware, or there's a mug you're particularly attached to from home, you're free to bring it, but don't worry about not having access to things. We have a fully stocked communal kitchen with all of the supplies you could possibly dream of, including a stand mixer, a food processor, multiple blenders, a coffee machine + 2 french presses, dozens of pots and pans, plates, baking sheets, and even two raclette machines. You name it, we've probably got it, and if we don't, you can always ask the Food Stewards about getting it!

What about cooking ingredients?

French house's kitchen keeps bulk ingredients stocked for all members of the house to use. This includes a variety of kitchen spices, cooking liquids, rice, as well as baking essentials like flour, sugar, butter, and chocolate chips. Anything we have, you're free to use, all we ask is that anything you make with a majority of house ingredients you leave half of on sactab, our 'sacrificial table,' for other house members to eat.

Tell me more about French House!

You can learn a lot from our website (which is where you are right now). If you have a question that hasn't been answered on this page, you can e-mail us at lmf-exec@mit.edu (if you think your question should have been answered here or elsewhere on the website, tell us that too). And of course you can (and should) come and visit in the fall!