UNSW Canberra MATES Program

What is MATES?  It is the Mentor Assisted Transition for new Enrolled Students arriving for commencement of study at UNSW Canberra.

The word ‘mate’ is an Australian slang word meaning ‘a buddy or friend’ and is used to greet someone as in ‘G’day mate’

The term “mentor” originates from Greek Mythology and dates back to earlier times. In a mentoring relationship, the two individuals are referred to as the “mentor” and the “mentee” (the individual being mentored). 

A mentor is a later year student who will share their knowledge and experience on settling into life on campus, how to access resources, sharing of their knowledge about UNSW Canberra and about living in Canberra. 

A mentor will

  • Introduce a mentee to other students
  • Help find places and access facilities and services on campus
  • Help navigate various online systems
  • How to sign up for the gym and other social activities
  • Provide information on transportation, accommodation and general information on living in Canberra

A mentee can contact their mentor to ask questions, share a cup of coffee or they may just need someone to talk to.  They can provide general advice about learning at university but for academic advice, a mentee should see the School Academic advisors.

When you sign up as a mentee, RSU will assign and allocate a mentor to you.  RSU will inform you who your mentor is and likewise advise your mentor.  Your mentor may subsequently contact you to catch up on campus and you can do the same.

New Student:  Apply for a mentor


 Volunteering as a Mentor:

By becoming a mentor it a great way to give back what you have learnt about successful university life and study to newer students and assist them to feel at home in Canberra/Australia.

As a mentor you

  • develop leadership and communication skills
  • interact with new students and UNSW Canberra staff
  • receive a certificate of appreciation from the university


  1. All mentors must be in their second year of study or above at UNSW Canberra
  2. Must be on campus
  3. Respect the University's equity and diversity policies
  4. Have an interest in working with people from diverse backgrounds
  5. Maintain a satisfactory Annual Progress Review
  6. Have a functional student email address and regularly check for messages
  7. Mentors are required to complete training which consists of attendance at a compulsory face to face training session
  8. Continuing mentors will need to undergo training again but must still lodge an application online


A Mentor Training Session will be held on Tuesday 5 February (9.30am to 11.30am) in SR03, Lecture Theatre North

Apply now to be a mentor