The First Year Camp, a staple of the ANUSA events calendar, has been cancelled due to safety concerns. The cancellation came only one day before the camps were meant to go ahead.

The first year camps had undergone significant change this year, incorporating students of all academic colleges into one camp. In previous years the camps had been segregated by college and would be held on a number of successive weekends.

The $50 cost for attendance would have covered two nights of accommodation, all meals and camp activities. This is a significant decrease in price from last year, where the first year camp ticket sales of $80 per person raked in $8,639.

The unexpected cancellation raises questions about the bottom line of ANUSA’s budget.

The reasoning for the cancellation also raises questions: do the safety concerns derive from concerns about Kianinny Bush Cottages, the intended location of the camp? Or do they arise from the planning of the event itself?

This is not the first time the camps have come under fire – 2018 Education Officer Harry Needham criticised the allocation of first year camps to the ANUSA Education Officer, saying they detracted from his ability to work on advocacy.

In SRC 8, Harry Needham said “First Year Camps should never have been assigned to the Education Officer, and I hope that in years to come they are removed from the Officer’s portfolio entirely.”

Perhaps this turn of events will see that hope become reality.

In the meantime, ANUSA promises an alternative event for ticket holders in the near future.

ANUSA was unavailable for comment.

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