Our unique association with the Western Bulldogs Football Club began in the 1980s. It has grown to include all four teams (AFL, AFLW, VFL and VFLW), and our innovative shared campus at VU Whitten Oval.

As the partnership continues to grow, so do the opportunities for our students and researchers. Each year, the Western Bulldogs host around 100 student placements through the Club and the Community Foundation. Our joint-funded sports-science team supervises students undertaking research in sport science, data analytics, strength and conditioning, and psychology.

Due to the VU Block Model®, VU has also become the preferred place for Bulldogs players to study. The learning model enables them to train, play and complete their studies without missing too many subjects during the season. Currently there are 21 Bulldogs players (across all teams) enrolled at VU.

Top 10 partnership facts


VU Polytechnic massage students treat Bulldogs players.


70 Western Bulldog elite athletes have attended VU.


>50 Bulldogs staff are VU alumni.


The entire Bulldogs' all-female sport-science team is from VU.


100 VU students work with the Bulldogs every year.


VU–Bulldog researchers have gone on to the NBA, AFL & Tennis Aus


VU is the only sponsor that supports all 4 Bulldogs teams.


Whitten Oval hosts VU massage, sport & research students


The WB Community Foundation hosts VU psychology, sport & business placements


Workplace & clinical learning for VU students

The Bulldogs accept sport science and exercise physiology cadets exclusively from VU. Our College of Sport, Health and Engineering offers up to three Western Bulldogs student cadetships annually.

Each year, VU students have the opportunity to complete workplace learning with the Bulldogs in areas including:

  • administration
  • biomechanics
  • business
  • community development
  • event management
  • exercise physiology
  • exercise rehabilitation
  • hospitality
  • marketing
  • psychology
  • remedial massage
  • tourism.

The University also has seventy students actively involved in the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation, a grass-roots initiative that provides those living in the western suburbs with the tools and support they need in order to succeed.

In addition, VU massage therapy and myotherapy students gain hands-on experience treating Bulldogs’ players and members of the public at our Victoria University Whitten Oval Massage Clinic.

Professional development for Bulldogs' players & staff

Many current and former Bulldogs' players and staff are studying at Victoria University or are VU Alumni.

Bulldogs players are encouraged to prepare for a career after football, including continuing their education. Our Elite Athlete program helps players who study at VU to balance study with training and competition demands, by offering flexible study options and career development support.

Our joint Professional Development Support Program helps Western Bulldogs’ staff continue their professional development through further study. Through this program, VU makes a contribution to the fees of a small number of staff selected for the program each year.

Joint community programs

VU and the Bulldogs have a shared commitment to the development of the western region through community-building programs. Some of our current community programs include:

  • Bulldogs Friendly Schools (BFS) program
    VU pre-service teachers help to facilitate the BFS ‘Footy in Schools’ program in western Melbourne primary schools. Students gain leadership and teamwork skills that can be applied to all aspects of their lives. Our pre-service teachers gain essential communication, leadership and coaching experience.
  • Sons of the West Men’s Health Program
    VU collaborates with the Western Bulldogs’ Sons of the West Men’s Health Program. The Program is designed to improve the health of men aged 18 years and over in the west of Melbourne and is the first program of its kind in Australia.
  • Daughters of the West Women’s Health Program
    VU is collaborating on the newly developed program is designed to improve the lives for all women aged 18 and over who are living, working and recreating in Victoria’s West.
  • Ready Settle Go
    The Ready SETTLE Go program offers a range of community focused health education, leadership, youth and employability programs in the light of meaningful partnerships and referral pathways with organisations and services in the west. VU’s community development students will be supporting this program in 2018 and beyond.


VU’s sports science researchers work side-by-side with the Bulldogs' coaching, medical and performance teams in a structured research program.

Collaborative research topics have included:

  • football performance
  • active living
  • community development
  • sport management.

Joint projects give our researchers the opportunity to work with an elite sports team and contribute to real-world advances in the sports industry. They also offer the Bulldogs access to sport science expertise to help them improve their on-field performance and to develop their skills and fitness in our world-class sports facilities.

Future plans include a number of evaluation and research projects for the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation evaluating program impact and opportunities for further improvements.

2023 free ticket offer

The Western Bulldogs AFLW team have organised a 2023 free ticket offer. This offer is for all VU staff, students and the broader community to attend their upcoming home matches.

This offer includes 2 free tickets that can be redeemed at either one match or across two matches. Simply head to the following link and complete your details by the below deadlines.

Reserve your tickets

Upcoming home games

Round Date Location Deadline
Round 5
Bulldogs vs St Kilda
Friday 29 September 2023, 7.15pm Whitten Oval Monday 25 September 2023
Round 6
Bulldogs vs Carlton
Friday 6 October 2023, 7.15pm Whitten Oval Monday 2 October 2023
Round 8
Bulldogs vs Sydney
Saturday 21 October 2023, 1.05pm Whitten Oval Monday 16 October 2023
Round 10
Bulldogs vs North
TBC (3-5 November 2023) Whitten Oval Monday 30 October 2023

Redeeming your free tickets

Once you have registered, you will receive an email from the Western Bulldogs about how to redeem your tickets.

You'll need to download the Western Bulldogs app from your app store and follow the steps on their website.

Contact us

Contact our sponsorship team for more information on our Western Bulldogs partnership.

Phone: +61 3 9919 1014
Email: [email protected].

Visit the Western Bulldogs website for more information about the club.