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What is Locals?

Locals Before Sports Day Group Photo

Short history

Locals started in 2011 as an orientation programme for non-residential students and has evolved to be a full year programme that offers academic support, social events, and volunteering opportunities to provide a sense of belonging to those that historically have not felt included in the Otago campus life.

What do we do?

We offer social events, volunteering opportunities, and academic support in partnership with the Student Learning Development Office (SLD) to support first year students through their first year at the University of Otago. Locals also provides the opportunity for our students to contribute to collegiate life on campus, including competing in the inter-college sports and cultural competition.

Our structure

Locals is a programme run by students for students.


We have a team of Locals leaders who are second or third year students who were in the locals programme in their first year, these students sign up to help other students through their first year at Otago. Each leader is on one of the four committees

Team leaders

Locals has four committees that focus on different aspects of the programme; social, volunteer, academic, and schools to focus on marketing locals to year 13 students. Each committee has a team leader that is responsible for that aspect of the programme, they organise events, and manage the leaders in each committee.


The locals intern helps to run the communications for the programme, they also organise trainings for the team leaders and leaders, and help the coordinator to manage the rest of the locals team.

Other staff 

Locals has a coordinator that runs the programme on a day to day basis, helping organise events, managing the locals team, and helping out the first year students. The coordinator also does all of the administration for the programme. The director does everything to keep the programme going year to year.

We also have a working group that helps guide the direction of the programme, and helps with any large decisions.

Inter-college competition

Locals Group Picture Intercollege Dinner 2018

Being part of locals means that you are a part of the collegiate community on the Otago campus. The inter-college competition is a big part of this collegiate community, it provides an opportunity for the colleges to compete against each other in a variety of sports and cultural activities. There is something for everyone with all the events listed on the inter-college website, if you see any events you would like to participate in email Maya Turner the locals coordinator for more information.

Visit the Inter-college website