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New head of Auckland’s Media Design School - Paul Brafield

New head of Auckland’s Media Design School - Paul Brafield

Paul Brafield was today announced as the new head of Media Design School (MDS), New Zealand’s most awarded tertiary institution for digital and design technology and part of Laureate Australia and New Zealand.

From 14 December 2018, Paul will assume the position of General Manager, Design and Technology, which encompasses MDS in Auckland as well as Laureate’s Design faculty in Australia.

Paul comes to the role with more than 23 years of industry, academic, business and leadership experience in the design and creative technology sectors. He has been the Director of Product Innovation at Laureate Australia and New Zealand for the past three years, responsible for implementing product strategy and driving best practice in the online/digital learning experience through product management, new program development and enhancement, while ensuring connectivity and collaboration with the global Laureate network (of more than one million students studying at 60 higher institutions in 20 countries). Paul has a deep connection to Laureate’s Design faculty, having worked in a number of key roles, including Program Director for Digital Media and Head of Learning and Teaching.

He brings an abiding connection and understanding of New Zealand’s design, creative technology and higher education sectors. Prior to joining Laureate, Paul was Program Leader, Digital Media at AUT (Auckland University of Technology) for nine years. His career in education also encompasses international experience, holding positions at The University of London and Birkbeck College in the UK.



Within New Zealand, Paul has worked as a broadcast graphic designer and art director for a range of major television networks, including TVNZ, CanWest and Sky, and as a freelance designer and consultant on broadcast, film and web projects.

In taking on the new role and leading MDS as part of his portfolio Paul said: “I am delighted to be joining MDS, which I have long admired for its amazing quality of student work resulting from a strong focus on industry immersion.

“I am looking forward to supporting the growth of that highly successful model as we expand our offering into exciting fields, like artificial intelligence and cloud computing, and exploring innovative new study options for students, such as micro-credentials.”

The outgoing Chief Executive of MDS, Darryn Melrose, said Paul is a natural fit for the role. “MDS is fortunate to have someone of Paul’s calibre to lead the School through the next era. His extensive experience and deep expertise in the fields of design and education as well as strategic business development make him the perfect choice,” Darryn said.

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