First-Year Preceptorial

Minerva Houses and Special Precept Funds

Minerva Houses

Precept students are assigned to sections according to the house of the faculty member. Therefore, many Preceptors choose to hold their course, or occasional classes, in their Minerva house seminar room. This provides a somewhat less formal atmosphere than the classroom. It also gets the students into their Minerva house, and gives them a change of pace.

The seminar rooms have a projector, screen, and DVD/VCR player. There is also a cord for hooking up your laptop. The operation of the equipment is different enough from the electronic classrooms that you will need a separate briefing before you use it. It only takes about a half-hour, and you can arrange for the instruction by contacting Virginia Solomon, Director of Media Services,, or ext. 6550.

You can also request the special Precept breakfast from Vicky Wain in Dining Services on a weekly basis or for specific dates. The Precept breakfast consists of assorted bagels and muffins, spreads, and napkins/plates/knives. It costs approximately $15 per breakfast. You can order juice when you order for an additional cost, but it is much cheaper if you bring juice in and ask to be reimbursed from your Precept fund at the end of the term (keep all your receipts).

Precept funds: How Can I Use the $300?

Each Preceptor can request $300 per term to pursue course-related activities with his or her Precept students. Faculty have used this money in a variety of ways. Some have taken their students to see a movie or a play related to the course theme; others have gone out to dinner with the class; still others have used it to provide breakfast in class once per week. Other ideas might include field trips or day trips off-campus. Many Preceptors ask their class to help decide how to use the money. Since cash advances from the Finance office are limited to $125, Preceptors usually charge any off-campus activity and seek reimbursement using an expense report form. Save your receipts and contact the Dean of Studies to get the account number for FYP. Submit the form to the Dean.

If you want to arrange an activity that costs more than $300, you might consider opening the activity to other members of your Minerva House so that you may request additional funds from the House. Each Minerva house has a website listing the House Council members and their contact information; see the Minerva Programs website to find your house site.

The on-campus Dining Services offers several options for catering that can be viewed at the following website. The person to contact for your order, preferably well in advance, is Vicky Wain ( You will need to provide her with some basic information:

Date and Time of Event
Place of Event
Number of People at Event
Food and Beverage Request
Account number (which you can receive from the Dean of Studies