How to become a volunteer

Volunteer position description

To act as a leader and chaperone to enhance ‘student experience’ and provide authentic ‘social connections’ between international students studying at the University of Adelaide’s English Language Centre (ELC) who have registered their interest to participate with the ELC Connections Program at either internal or external events organised by the ELC. These events may include:

  • Connections & Chat: An event promoting informal conversations between students and volunteers over a coffee.
  • Connections & Cross-cultural Conversations: A series of short informal conversations held as a structured timed event during which participants discuss various topics with a range of different people.
  • Connections around Adelaide: A variety of affordable, fun events and activities in and around Adelaide in which volunteers assist with both the coordination of the event on the day and connecting with participating students using English. This may include attending and watching A League and/or AFL games, a visit to Bounce or Latitude recreation centres, visits to the beach, the Zoo or Wildlife Parks and other free Adelaide festivals when available.  
  • Connections Tours: Tours of the North Terrace Campus or iconic places around Adelaide e.g. Chinatown, Adelaide Central Market and the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, etc.
  • Connections Presentations/Drop Ins: To welcome and present at orientations/or in class drop ins to ELC students about the program, create enthusiasm and outline the benefits of participating with the program (which can be conducted with another volunteer).


  • Must be in attendance with students at all times for the duration of an event or activity.
  • Ensure students arrive at the specified location on time, through the appropriate transportation.
  • Ensure students return safely to the designated location upon completion of an event or activity.
  • Be reliable and commit, when indicated, to the duties and times required.
  • Timely communication if you cannot commit to an event anymore due to unforeseen circumstances.

Specific duties to be undertaken:

  • Engage the students in conversation using the English language.
  • Enrich students experience through knowledge of an event or activity or location.
  • Answer questions to help student learning and broaden cross-cultural understanding.

Qualifications – skills, expertise, experience, knowledge:

  • An interest in relating to international students.
  • An awareness of, and sensitivity to, cross-cultural issues.
  • A good standard of spoken English.
  • A clear voice and good listening skills.
  • Knowledge and/or interest in different cultures.
  • Knowledge of local area and attractions is beneficial.

Personal attributes required:

  • Ability to interact with people from diverse backgrounds and age groups.
  • A patient, friendly and engaging manner.
  • Ability to work harmoniously within a diverse team. 

Training provided (include any HSW Induction and Safety Management Training):

  • Induction provided and other training as required.

Time frame and/or attendance requirements 

  • A minimum of 5 to 7 hours of volunteering required per semester. Volunteers can nominate which events they would like to assist with.
  • Commit to at least 1 Connections Presentation/Drop in during the semester.

Location of work: Various

Travel involved: Some travel with the students (via public transport) is required for specific activities which is financed by the ELC.

Approved out of pocket expenses (eg. travel, meals, car parking)

Public transport costs will be covered by the ELC.

Depending on the budget, any other out of pocket expenses when attending ‘Connections around Adelaide’ activities such watching A League and/or AFL games, a visit to Bounce or Latitude recreation centres, visits to the beach, the Zoo or Wildlife Parks etc. will be discussed prior to individual activities/events.

Special requirements (eg. police check, health check, drivers’ licence): N/A

Benefits to the volunteer:

  • Broaden networks and develop a deeper understanding of cultural awareness.
  • Experience working in a busy and dynamic business unit of the University of Adelaide.
  • Gain international student liaison experience.
  • Visit local activities and events for free or at little cost.
  • An ELC Connections Program Volunteer Certificate (provided annually) indicating hours of volunteer work completed in the program.
  • A referral letter from the ELC (available for longer-term volunteers upon written request).
  • Volunteering hours count towards the Adelaide Graduate Award (only applicable to UoA students)