University of Sydney welcomes students back to campus

Student life returns for Welcome Week’s celebrations and orientation events.

After months of online learning during the pandemic, Welcome Week 2022 (14-18 February) will kick off with a combination of both in-person and online events. The University of Sydney Union will host Welcome Fest (16-18 February), featuring live music, an outdoor cinema, food trucks, and hundreds of clubs and societies to join.

In response to the challenges students have faced during the pandemic, the University tripled its investment in Welcome Week for 2022 and provided grants for student organisations to increase their already substantial contribution to student life.

“We are welcoming our students back with a celebration that offers everything that makes campus life special,” said Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Mark Scott.

“University isn’t just about what you learn in the classroom. It’s about experiences, connections and friendships that can shape your life for decades to come.

“For students returning to our campuses and those joining us for the first time, the last two years have often been difficult and isolating. While the safety of our community remains paramount, it’s also important that as much of the student experience as possible is delivered in person, on campus.”

We are welcoming our students back with a celebration that offers everything that makes campus life special.

Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Mark Scott

USU President Prudence Wilkins-Wheat said excitement was high among the student community. “We can’t wait to come back,” said the fifth-year Arts/Law student.

“This year’s Welcome Fest will be the biggest ever and there’s a real feeling of hope and anticipation among the students as campus life returns. Those of us who can are looking forward to attending classes in person, and we can’t wait to dive into all the other experiences that university offers.”

Semester 1 will begin after Welcome Week on 21 February, with a return to on-campus teaching. Remote options will be available for those not yet able to attend campus.

As campus life returns, the University will continue to follow public-health guidance, taking all reasonable precautions to minimise the transmission of COVID-19. The University’s COVID safety precautions will apply to all on-campus activities.

Welcome events on campus

  • University Welcome to New Students This traditional, ceremonial welcome marks the official opening of the new academic year and the USU Welcome Fest. Chancellor Belinda Hutchinson and Vice-Chancellor and Principal Professor Mark Scott will welcome students to the University of Sydney community. 16 February, 10-11am, The Great Hall, Quadrangle, University Ave
  • Love Buds Main Stage The main stage opens on 16 February at 11.30am, with a Welcome to Country and a smoking ceremony. Throughout Welcome Fest, the main stage will host live music, along with demonstrations and performances from USU clubs and societies. There will be dance performances, political debates, a medieval combat demonstration and more. 16-18 February, various times, lawns outside the Great Hall
  • MOJO Kombucha Outdoor Cinema There will be movies on the big screen under the stars, plus free popcorn and lollies and live opening entertainment from DJ Ruby J. 16-17 February, 6-10pm, Law Lawns, Sydney Law School, Eastern Avenue
  • Explore clubs and societies Join the University of Sydney Union (USU) as a free member to access student-run clubs and societies which offer the chance to meet new friends and get involved in campus life. With more than 180 clubs on show at the Welcome Fest stalls, there’s something for everyone.
  • Meet the USYD Rocketry Team This multidisciplinary team of students designs, manufactures and launches high-power rockets, with their work winning gold and silver in international rocketry competition, the Spaceport America Cup. They will display their custom-built rockets, including the Silvereye, winner of the competition’s 10,000 ft category in 2019. The Silvereye is more than two metres long and can reach speeds approaching the speed of sound. 14 February, 11am-5pm, Cadigal Green
  • Human Mart On first glance, this interactive art installation appears to be a typical store with a range of everyday products. But every item carries the name and story of an individual who has experienced slavery. The pop-up installation will raise awareness about modern slavery and show how the University community is working to address it16-17 February, 9am-4pm, 18 February, 9am-3pm, outside Sydney Law School, Eastern Avenue
  • Welcome back to the Library Facts, fun and freebies are on offer at the Library marquee. Welcome Week is a chance to explore the Library, a home away from home for students. Join a Big Library Tour or solve the puzzles in the Library Escape challenge. Various library activities until 25 February, Fisher Library
  • Sustainability at Sydney Free bike check-ups, safe cycle-route planning, virtual biodiversity treasure hunts and daily Sustainability Trail Tours across campus – it’s all on offer at the Sustainability at Sydney stall. Learn about the University’s big goals for a more sustainable future and how to get involved. 16-18 February, 9am-4pm, Law Lawns, Eastern Avenue
  • Explore more events

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