Buddy program

Buddy program

The Macquarie University Buddy Program provides students with support and a point of contact to assist in your transition into Macquarie University.

The program offers ongoing social and geographic support through peer relationships. As most students who participate in the program are international students, current Macquarie students assist in sharing their experiences and providing a valuable and fun introduction to life in Sydney and Australia.

The buddy program organises many social events and activities throughout the semester including:

  • airport pickups
  • campus tours, and
  • sightseeing in and around Sydney.

Upcoming events and activities     

Like us on Facebook and follow updates on MacSync to get more information on upcoming events.

Who are buddies?

Buddies are current Macquarie students who volunteer to support new students through various social activities such as Sydney Harbour cruises and Sydney sights walking tour.

Supported by a group of buddy team leaders, the buddies act as a peer support network and provide new and ongoing students with a safe and friendly environment.

All buddies will receive a certificate and reference detailing their contribution.

Apply to be a buddy

Buddy applications for Semester 1, 2017 have now closed. Please follow the Facebook and MacSync pages for updates regarding the next intake of applicants.

Aims of the buddy program

  • encourage a sense of belonging and community within Macquarie for new and ongoing students
  • welcome new international students to Australia
  • deliver ongoing social and geographic support to international students through peer relationships
  • increase knowledge, awareness and accessibility of the various university services.

What the role involves

The buddy program is an unpaid volunteer opportunity. The time commitment required is 20 hours during the orientation and semester. This is made up of a series of compulsory events and extra events such as an O-week stall and marketing events. It also involves:

  • airport pickups
  • orientating new international students to Australian culture (incl. understanding of Sydney transport system)
  • Sydney sights and tours
  • day trips to Sydney and NSW tourist attractions
  • guiding new students through Sydney's main tourist attractions
  • social events and activities
  • facilitating other on-campus social activities.


Buddies are expected to fulfil the following responsibilities:

  • adhere to the Student Code of Conduct.
  • promote values that reflect those of Campus Life
  • engage and participate in compulsory events (listed above)
  • provide support and guidance to new international students throughout the program
  • contribute to the evaluation of the program through the role.

Reporting relationship

Buddies will be supported by a group of buddy team leaders, who in turn report to Campus engagement staff. Team leaders will undertake the development, coordination and deployment of buddy training and the international orientation period.

Selection criteria

Essential criteria:

  • Effective oral communication skills.
  • Proven ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Non-judgemental, respectful and empathetic behaviour.
  • Interest in international student experiences and cross-cultural activities.

Desirable criteria:

  • Demonstrated ability to be assertive and maintain appropriate boundaries.
  • Ability to engage students through initiating and maintaining conversation.
  • Ability to be assertive in challenging situations.
  • Ability to build a good rapport with students and staff and answer questions patiently.
  • Interest in self-directed learning and personal development.
  • Awareness of global affairs.
  • Ability to foster positive relationships between students.

Role requirements

Applicants must:

  • Be over 18 years of age.
  • Have completed one full session of study through Macquarie.
  • Be enrolled for at least one further session at Macquarie.
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