Basser College

Steeped in history, Basser College was established in 1959 and has the honour of being the first residential college on the UNSW campus.

Accommodation people and events

Named after Sir Adolf Basser, a Polish entrepreneur and philanthropist, the college was originally built to accommodate rural students, enabling them access to the same education as local and metropolitan students.


Highlights of the Basser College year come in many different areas across communities and charities, sporting events and social and cultural events. Some key events include the annual fundraiser for Headspace, the Myall Classic Ultramarathon, Shave for a Cure, the annual college ball and play, inter-college band competitions; regular sporting competitions in almost every sport imaginable and, of course, the annual parents weekend

In 2019, Basser College celebrated its 60th anniversary which was well attended by nearly 500 alumni.

All-inclusive environment
Academic and pastoral support
A rich history

Student support

You’ll be supported by an on-site team comprising of the Dean, Deputy Dean and a team of Resident Fellows (or RFs). Every floor has an RF, and their job is to provide academic guidance and pastoral support and ensure each resident is looked after.

Academically, we run peer-led study groups to support students adjust to the academic requirements of university study – in addition, we also run shared study sessions along with wellbeing programs co-ordinated by our Wellbeing Officer, helping to make the transition from high school to university a smooth one.


I didn’t really know what to expect at all. Some things that stick out for me are the convenience of living on campus, and feeling like I have more time because travel time is cut away.
Basser College images
Anthea Warne
Bachelor of Medical Studies/Doctor of Medicine
Living on campus has far exceeded my expectations. You can contribute to and become a part of an energetic, passionate and supportive community. I’ve met amazing people who encourage me to be the best version of myself.
Basser College images
Emilie Hughes
Bachelor of Law and Economics

Gillian Turner | Dean of Basser College    

Hi I am Gillian. I was born in Canberra but grew up in Sydney. I am a lifelong UNSW alumna, having studied and worked here for over 12 years, a history geek and camping enthusiast. 

As a postgraduate Honours student, I was lucky enough to be part of the Baxter team as a resident fellow and then Deputy. After leaving there to pursue a PhD and raise two lovely little children, I couldn't keep away and have returned to Basser as Dean. Working in an environment that fosters a thriving and caring community is a dream and I am excited to be able to continue to support and contribute to student and staff development in the flourishing culture of Basser. 

To me, Basser is a home. It is a place where people are more than peers, they are friends and that instils a level of respect and duty to each other. Basserians are passionate about working together to pursue their own and shared goals and the community culture that only grows stronger supports them in this. 

My favourite event at Basser would have to be the Harbour cruise. It comes at the end of a long week of meeting new life-long friends and is a great way to celebrate the beginning of a fantastic new year. 

Jamie Lau | Deputy Dean of Basser College

I’m a 4th year medical student from Macau, China but grew up in Perth, WA. I took a couple years off Med School to play tennis in America and came back to UNSW just over two years ago. This is my third year working at Basser college and I’ve been loving every minute of it! I’m a big fan of the beach, travelling, playing sport and exploring the outdoors.

As Deputy Dean, Jamie is responsible for assisting Dean Gillian in the daily management of the college, as well as fulfilling the role of Resident Fellow in terms of providing academic and pastoral support to a group of students.

Resident and Student Fellows

A Student Fellow (SF) is assigned every year in Basser College. They’re a volunteer senior student whose role is to create and run a range of proactive wellbeing initiatives for the entire college. The SF works closely with the Resident Fellows, Deputy Dean and Dean, ensuring the wellbeing of all residents is top of mind

Resident Fellows (RFs) are staff members of UNSW and typically in their final years of study or already holding a degree. RFs live with the students on their floors and provide daily academic and pastoral support. RFs aren’t teachers, but they’re a little like a supportive older sibling with loads of experience to pass on and a willingness to help guide the residents.

House Committee

The House Committee is composed of student leaders elected annually by residents in various portfolios aimed at offering residents opportunities to be involved in extra-curricular activities. The House Committee includes an executive group of a president, secretary and treasurer and administers a budget each year across areas such as cultural, sport, social, charities and communications.


  • average room size 10 to 12 square metres

  • fully furnished

  • private & shared bathrooms

  • all meals provided (including formal dinners) 

  • wi-fi, electricity, gas and water included

  • cleaning of rooms fortnightly

  • 24-hour campus security

  • social and group study rooms on each floor

  • large common room adjacent to landscaped gardens

  • rooftop terraces with outdoor barbecue facilities

  • cashless operated laundry facilities

  • sporting, social and cultural programs

  • opportunities for student leadership and volunteering.


Room types & fees

Room type




$526.35 p/w

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner)



$569.35 p/w

(Breakfast, lunch, dinner)



  1. Contract period is 44 weeks. Single-term contracts are currently not available due to high occupancy numbers, please contact office for more details.
  2. Weekly rates are for 2024 and are expected to change each year. Rates shown are for full-year contracts only.

The contract period is from 2 February to 9 December 2024.