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Whether private or public, for-profit or non-profit, universities around the world are under pressure to manage costs and increase revenues. In the face of cuts to public funding and increased competition, most universities are reviewing opportunities for cutting costs. However, one of the most important areas for universities to focus on in order to actually drive increased revenue is internationalization. Not only can internationalization be used to drive enrollments and revenue, internationalization can also positively affect institutional reputation, influence, and ranking - valuable factors in long-term institutional health and growth. For universities, there are multiple approaches to internationalization including increasing international student enrollments, offering degrees abroad, and utilizing pathway programs to ensure more access to their programs. This session will discuss the various benefits of each approach and the best practices for implementing them. It will also explore how certain regions such as Singapore and Dubai are becoming education hubs and how these strategies can be best used in a national or city-wide context.


  • What is the role of education hubs in international education? Will locations such as Singapore and Dubai attract more students to their regions?
  • How will regulations affect the flow of international students globally?
  • What is the role of branch campuses and how will they allow for increased access from students?

Moderator - David Barker


David Barker


Deputy CEO of ERC Institute
Brief Bio:

David holds a Bachelor of Science from The Pennsylvania State University and an MBA from Rutgers University. He spent 19 years with a Fortune 100 company in the Aerospace sector, 10 of those years with full P&L responsibility. He is an experienced executive with greenfield startups, merger and acquisition, and divisional expansion, and has lectured in China, Singapore, and the US on change management and strategy. In 2007, David founded Executive Education Center, LLP. and was the Executive Director offering an EMBA program through Rutgers Business School in Singapore. He was a director of the American Association of Singapore from 2000 through 2011 and its President from 2002 through 2005. He is a member of the Singapore Institute of Directors and also served on the General Committee of the American Club in Singapore from 2002 through 2007. He is the past Chairman of the Singapore American Community Action Council, an organization dedicated to providing counseling and sports opportunities to youth and families in Singapore. He is a founding Director of Junior Achievement Singapore and its current Vice Chairman.

Panelist - Andrew Nicol


Andrew Nicol


Vice President
Asia (Country Director, India) Hobsons
Brief Bio:

Andy joined Hobsons (the leading education services provider- and part of the Daily Mail and General Trust PLC) in 2010 after 12 years working for a range of UK universities in a variety of international roles. Andy was Hobsons’ first Director Business Development Asia, where he established the company’s initial Asia presence (in Malaysia) and led on the development of the Asia strategy, sales and business development, M&A activity, and offshore operations. Since 2014, he has served as Country Director for India, leading on the company’s first k12 investment and joint venture in India.

Andy was previously Director International Development at Coventry University, responsible for the recruitment, admission and welfare support for international and European Union (EU) students, where in 3 years Coventry became one of the UK's leading destinations for international students. Andy has a Bachelor's degree in History and Politics, and a Masters degree in Russian Studies. More recently he gained a Master’s degree in International Marketing with distinction from Strathclyde University, UK.

Andy is a member and active contributor of NAFSA, the European Association of International Education (EAIE) and  is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).

Andy was also previously Deputy Director of International Development at Nottingham Trent University. Prior to this, he worked for several UK universities in a range of senior international roles. Andy has extensive expertise creating, shaping and driving development strategies across the international and UK education services landscapes. He has also presented at numerous international conferences and workshops on international development, marketing, and student recruitment.

Panelist - Ashwin Asomull


Ashwin Asomull


International Education Practice,
The Parthenon Group
Brief Bio:

Mr. Assomull advises global education clients, including leading private equity funds and investors and education operators and foundations on growth strategies such as market potential, market entry, investment decisions, and profit uplift strategies.

He has been instrumental in building the firm’s knowledge and client network in the Middle East and leads Parthenon’s education work throughout the Gulf, advising clients in Early Years, K-12, Higher Education, Transnational Education and Education Technology sectors. Mr. Assomull also leads the firm’s international work in the public sector and has worked with government ministries and foundations in the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and India.

Mr. Assomull is a frequently requested speaker at leading education conferences around the world. He has been quoted on education in various publications such as Bloomberg, Times Higher Education, and Gulf News. He holds an MBA from London Business School and a B.Sc. from LSE.

Panelist - Evan Law


Evan Law


Chief Executive Officer
PSB Academy, Singapore
Brief Bio:

Evan Law is the Chief Executive Officer at PSB Academy. The Academy operates its main campus in Singapore at Tiong Bahru with a student population of over 10,000 supported by a team of over 200 staff; and has a city campus located at Shenton in the central business district. It also has a strong regional footprint in Asia with offices in China and Vietnam. PSB Academy is one of the largest private education providers in Singapore with 50 years of heritage and experience.

Evan has more than 17 years of experience in the private education industry. Prior to joining PSB Academy, Evan spent almost 7 years with the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Singapore (ICPAS). He held his last post as their Acting Chief Executive Officer, managing the Institute and its various subsidiaries. Before that, he also held various positions including Chief Operating Officer, Training Director and Head of Membership of ICPAS.

As the Head of Membership, he managed over 25,000 strong professional membership and its 16,000 joint examination-scheme students.

In his role as a Training Director, he provided leadership and direction for ICPAS’ Continuing Professional Education (CPE) ensuring delivery of relevant and affordable CPE training to its members. Evan also helped built up ICPAS’ key subsidiary that funds and supports the activities of ICPAS – SAA Global Education, formerly known as the Singapore Accountancy Academy. It remains one of the largest accountancy schools in Singapore (both private as well as public) enrolling over 6,000 students a year into various degrees and professional programmes.

Evan also served a 6-year term as a member of the Institute of Technical Education’s Business School Academic Advisory Committee for its Business courses.

He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing and Management from the University of Oregon as well as a Master in Business Administration from Portland State University, Oregon.

Panelist - Dennis Foo


Dennis Foo


Head of Pearson Qualifications Venture Markets
Pearson PLC
Brief Bio:

Dennis Foo is the Head of Qualifications for Pearson Venture Markets. He is based in Singapore and tasked with growing the qualifications business in territories spanning Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America. He was the immediate past Managing Director of Pearson Qualifications International for the Asia Pacific region from 2008 through to 2013.

Dennis has more than 15 years of senior management, leadership and board experience in the Information Technology and Education sectors. He embarked on his professional career with KMPG Consulting in 1998.

Dennis holds a Master of Science degree in Information Technology from the University of Glasgow and post-graduate qualifications in e-Business and International Business from the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford & the National University of Singapore.

Panelist - Steve Riehs


Steven Riehs


Professional and International Education, DeVry Education Group

Steve Riehs, President, Professional and International Education, DeVry Education Group Riehs joined DeVry Education Group in 2004 as Vice President and General Manager of Online Operations. He was named President of DeVry Online Services in 2008. In 2010, he was appointed President of K-12, Professional and International Education, which consists of five of the eight DeVry Group institutions.

DeVry Group’s purpose is to empower its students to achieve their educational and career goals. DeVry Group is a global provider of educational services and the parent organization of American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, Becker Professional Education, Carrington College, Chamberlain College of Nursing, DeVry Brasil, DeVry University, Ross University School of Medicine and Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. These institutions offer a wide array of programs in business, healthcare, technology, accounting and finance.

Riehs has an MBA from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business and a bachelor’s in Industrial Engineering and Management Science from Northwestern University.


Knowledge Partners



About Kaizen

We are a private equity firm focused on investing with a distinct focus on companies and entrepreneurs who have the potential to lead their domains. Our purpose is operations driven transformative growth, which defines whom we partner with and how we operate.


As one of the world’s leading and largest graduate business schools, INSEAD brings together people, cultures and ideas to change lives and to transform organizations. These core values have enabled INSEAD to truly become "The Business School for the World."

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