Ashwin Assomull
Partner, Global Education Practice

Ashwin Assomull is a Partner at L.E.K. Consulting’s Global Education Practice. He has led more than 200 engagements in the education sector, across all verticals including K-12, Higher and Vocational Education, Transnational Education, English Language Training and Edtech. Ashwin frequently advises CEOs of top education companies and investors on buy- and sell-side diligences, market-entry strategy, and pricing strategy, and full potential assessments. He is also a regular speaker at industry-leading conferences such as EdEx MENA, EdEx Qatar, IPSEF, UK Middle East Summit and Abu Dhabi Ideas Weekend. Ashwin joined L.E.K. in 2018 and was previously a Managing Director at the Education Centre of Excellence at EY- Parthenon. He holds a Bachelor of Science from the London School of Economics and a Master of Business Administration from London Business School.

Brett Berquist
Director International
University of Auckland

Joining the plenary panel on Sustainability

Brett Berquist leads international strategy and operations at the University of Auckland, ranked #1 in the inaugural THE Global Impact ranking measuring universities on SDGs. He has over 25 years experience in the sector, in Europe, the US, and Asia. Recent publications include: -Crawford, P. & Berquist, B. (Eds.) (2020). Community Engagement Abroad: Perspectives and practices on service, engagement, and learning overseas. East Lansing, MI: Michigan State University Press. -Berquist, B., Moore, K., & Milano, J. (Eds.). (2018). International internships: Mission, methods & models, a collection of papers from the Global Internship Conference. Boston, MA: Academic Internship Council. 

CJ Tremblay
Manager, Marketing and Strategic Initiatives
Paragon Testing Enterprises Inc.

Joining the plenary panel on Sustainability

CJ Tremblay has seven years of professional experience in the international education and language-testing industry. During her career she has worked for University of Toronto's School of Continuing Studies, IDP Education, owner of IELTS, and most recently is leading the global marketing and instructional products teams at Paragon Testing Enterprises owner of the CAEL and CELPIP English language Tests. Ms. Tremblay earned her Global Executive MBA from Georgetown University in Washington, DC in 2018 and has since completed several training courses in Sustainability and Social Responsibility. She is currently supporting the Climate Action Network for International Educators (CANIE) in Canada.

David Pilsbury
Deputy Vice Chancellor International
Coventry University

Joining the plenary panel on Employability

Responsible for all Coventry’s international activities including joint ventures, student recruitment, collaborative partnerships, curriculum internationalization, mobility, and cultural enhancement. Pilsbury leads a sector leading global engagement agenda recognised by many awards including the Queen’s Award for Enterprise and EAIE’s premier award. He holds a number of Board level positions including of the China-Britain Business Council & EURIE. Previously the founding CEO of the Worldwide Universities Network, HEFCE Head of Research Policy and Assistant Director R&D at Cambridge University Hospital. He spent a number of years in strategic consultancy and investment banking after completing a D.Phil and research at Oxford University.

Jan Lynn-Matern
Founder and Partner
Emerge Education

Jan Lynn-Matern is a Founder and Partner at Emerge Education, a European seed fund investing in exceptional founders who are solving the $8.5tn skills gap. Emerge is backed by strategics such as Cambridge University Press, Cambridge Assessment and Jisc, as well as founders/investors of Trilogy and 2u. The team has a solid track record with 50+ investments, with those companies raising £100m+ from investors such as Local Globe, Stride, Project A, Rethink Education, Learn Capital and Reach Capital. Portfolio: Emerge also convenes Edge, a series of thought leadership forums for higher education and corporate leaders working on addressing the skills gap in their organisations and beyond. Through Edge, Emerge is able to help founders gain unique customer insights and build defining business partnerships that help their companies grow faster. Prior to founding Emerge Education, Jan was an Associate at Chelwood Capital, a boutique impact investment and advisory firm. Jan graduated from New College, University of Oxford, with a first class degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics.

Jess Hickman
Director of Client Services
Crunch Simply Digital

Crunch’s Director of Client Services has been the main relationship manager for the Swansea University account. Having graduated from Cardiff University in 2012, Jess has worked at Crunch for 5 years. Her role has evolved through Ad-Operations through to Digital Consultant and Digital Campaign Manager. Jessie was highly commended for Best Woman in Technology at the Wales Online Digital Awards 2019. In 2017 she was highly commended for ‘Young Digital Person of the Year’ Award. She has worked with 1 in 4 universities, from helping with academic reputation campaigns through to student recruitment during clearing. 

Joanna Regulska
Vice Provost and Associate Chancellor for Global Affairs
UC Davis

Joanna Regulska is Vice Provost and Associate Chancellor for Global Affairs and Professor of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at the University of California, Davis. For more than three decades Regulska has led large-scale programs that have transformed institutions, established collaborative partnerships, and substantially improved globally focused services and programs for students, faculty, and staff. In 2019, she was recognized with the inaugural Institute of International Education (IIE) Senior International Officer Award.

Nannette Ripmeester
Expertise in Mobility

Joining the plenary panel on Sustainability

Nannette Ripmeester is Director of Expertise in Labour Mobility and founder of the app She started her international career at the European Commission. Nannette is board member of Codarts University and Director Europe for i-graduate. Ripmeester's most recent publication is "Cultural understanding as a key skill for employability" with Darla Deardorff. With over 25 years of experience working for corporate and HigherEd organisations, Nannette is a leading expert on mobility for study and work.

Simon Marginson
Professor of Higher Education
University of Oxford

Simon Marginson is Professor of Higher Education at the University of Oxford, Director of the ESRC/OFSRE Centre for Global Higher Education (CGHE), Editor-in-Chief of Higher Education, Professorial Associate of the Melbourne Centre for Study of Higher Education at the University of Melbourne, and Lead Researcher with Higher School of Economics in Moscow. CGHE is a research partnership of five UK and nine international universities with £9 million in funding for 16 projects on global, national and local aspects of higher education in 2015-2023. Simon’s research is focused primarily on global and international higher education, higher education in East Asia, and higher education and social inequality. He is currently preparing an integrated theorisation of higher education. He Co-Chaired the UK Higher Education Commission Inquiry into Education Exports which reported in 2018. His most recent books are Changing Higher Education for a Changing World, edited with Claire Callender and William Locke (Bloomsbury, 2020) and High Participation Systems of Higher Education, edited with Brendan Cantwell and Anna Smolentseva (Oxford University Press, 2018).

Simon Nelson
Chief Executive

Joining the plenary panel on Digital technology innovation

Simon Nelson is Chief Executive of FutureLearn, the leading social learning platform and first UK-based provider of massive open online courses (MOOCs). Previously of the BBC, Simon has a background in digital disruption as a pioneer in taking media brands and content online. FutureLearn formed in December 2012 by The Open University and is now jointly owned by The Open University and The SEEK Group. FutureLearn has over 10 million learners signed up worldwide.