Unpack the Quack

Help Ducks Move

Every year, hundreds of students, faculty, and staff of the University of Oregon volunteer to help the incoming class move into the residence halls as a part of Unpack the Quack (UPQ). Unpack the Quack volunteers help move boxes, greet new ducks, and welcome students' families and support systems to the UO Campus. This volunteer program is coordinated by University Housing. Participating in this valuable UO tradition will allow you or your organization to interact with new Ducks and show your community spirit.



Any campus-affiliated group or individual is eligible to volunteer. To do so, you will sign up for one 2.5-hour shift according to your schedule. If you are available longer, you can volunteer for more than one shift when you register. UO staff members should check with their supervisors to determine whether departmental operations will allow time away from work and whether it will qualify as paid or unpaid release time. All volunteers may discuss their role on campus in conversation when asked by a student, but absolutely no recruitment, solicitation, or advertising (e.g., distributing fliers) is permitted during the event. The purpose of UPQ is to welcome students to the broader UO community and help families through the task of moving students into the residence halls. Finally, if you are living in the residence halls and volunteer for Unpack the Quack, you will be able to move in one day early before general move-in and will receive a credit for one night’s early arrival fee. Early arrival information is available through My Housing

Once you have signed up, please continue to check your email for updates and other important information.

You will need to watch UPQ training and box-lifting safety videos before your volunteer shift. Also please review this safe lifting techniques flier.

If you need to change any of your information or shift preferences after you register, you can contact our office at housing@uoregon.edu or 541-346-4277.


Information for Volunteers 

All UPQ volunteers will receive an Unpack the Quack t-shirt and nametag when they check-in for their shifts. Please wear comfortable, closed-toed shoes and clothes that are suitable for walking, climbing stairs, carrying items, and bending. Also, we recommend that you do not bring any bags, purses or valuables, as we will not be able to securely store them for you.

In order to have space for unloading zones, we’re asking all members of campus to consider alternative modes of transportation to campus on move-in day. However, if you need to drive, we recommend parking west of University Street. UPQ headquarters is located at the Global Scholars Hall Great Room for main campus and the Barnhart Housing Service Center for Barnhart and Riley.

While volunteering, heavy lifting is not required. Students and their families are expected to handle any unusually heavy or fragile items (such as electronics) during move-in. The volunteer’s main duty is to meet students in the unloading zone, help them get their items to the residence hall rooms, and then return to the unloading zone for the next family. If you don’t feel that you can lift something, please don’t lift it! We value your well-being and the well-being of the student’s items. On that note, if a student’s belonging is damaged while you are carrying it, you are not responsible for repair or replacement. If an item does break, please direct the student to their community director or the Unpack the Quack headquarters.

Volunteers who sign up for at least one of our pre-set shifts will receive a meal voucher at the end of their shift. This meal voucher can be used at any University Dining venue on items valued up to five points. The voucher will expire within a few days after UPQ so we recommend using it after your shift. Due to the number of volunteers, there will be only one voucher given out per volunteer, even if multiple shifts are worked.