NUmates International Students Program

We understand that  our international students here in Australia may be away from  support networks of family and friends. With the NUmates Program we hope to bridge this gap in support, connection and friendship and help students create experiences they'll never forget.

There are a number of support services available to you, assisting with both your academic and personal lives – you’ll find those contact details below.

NUmates buddy program

What is NUmates?

NUmates helps international students connect to the University’s staff, their families and members of our communities for support and friendship. You’ll also be able to contact other University of Newcastle international students who are staying in Newcastle, the Central Coast, Sydney and abroad.

The amount of contact or support may be as simple as an email or text a couple of times a week, a catch up for a lunch or dinner, a simple trip to the beach, park, a museum or gallery or even catching a movie together. It’s completely up to you and your NUmates buddy.

How do I register?

It’s easy to register for the program through the app (Vygo). You get to choose the buddy who's right for you based on their bios and availability. Once you match with a buddy you can connect via instant chat and organise face-to-face or in-app catch-ups – it’s simple and easy to stay in touch.

Email to sign up for the 2022 program!

Register for the program at Vygo or download it on the App Store or Google Play.

More Information:

Register for the program at Vygo

NUmates Group Sessions

There’s a huge range of events and activities that you can be part of, and we’ve highlighted just a few for you try -  by yourself, with your NUmates buddy, or get a group of other students together through the NUmates app.

Free and fun in Newcastle

You’ll find a whole range of (free) Newcastle activities and event options here and Newcastle City Council and the City Library run many free events and activities across summer.

Free and fun in Sydney

  • Explore the many walking trails along the coastlines or in the bush
  • Have a picnic in the Royal Botanical Gardens
  • Visit art galleries, most exhibitions are free! Check out Art Gallery of NSW
  • Visit the Rocks Markets on weekends, George Street, Playfair Street and Jack Mundey Place
  • Take a Newtown Street Art Walk and check out the centre of Sydney’s street art scene. The walk starts on the corner of King Street and Church Street

There are more suggestions for activities and event options here. The City Of Sydney page is updated with new events daily and remember to check eventbrite (search "free") as well.

Free and fun on the Central Coast

There are a huge range of things to do, all across the beautiful Central Coast, famous for its beautiful beaches, scenic walks, State Forests and the Marine Discovery Centre.

There are numerous art galleries, including the Gosford Regional Gallery where you’ll also find the Edogawa Japanese Garden where you can feed the koi. The Central Coast Council and Visit Central Coast pages are both is updated regularly so check regularly for your choice of activities and events.

There are so many events and activities you can be part of, and we’ve highlighted just a few for you try. You can have free fun by yourself, with your NUmates buddy, or get a group of other students together.

Support services

University Enquiry Centre

(chat, email and phone)

(02) 4921 5000

9:00am - 5:00pm, Monday to Friday

After-Hours Crisis Support

1300 653 007

SMS 0488 884 165

Available 24/7

University Health & Wellbeing Advisors

(02) 4921 6622

9:00am - 5:00pm, Monday to Friday

International Student Legal Service NSW

Make a query online

Call using a free interpreter

131 450


No matter where you are in New South Wales, we hope you have a great time during your break and remind you to check the University of Newcastle COVID-19 page for updates.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.