Senior Manager Business Development (Asia-Pacific)
“Countries like India, Vietnam, and Malaysia have a rapidly emerging middle class that looks favorably upon a western education, and so, it’s imperative that universities looking to recruit from these countries meeting prospective students head-on in market.”Contact David Prentice
When did you join Grok?
Describe yourself in three words.
Curious, adaptable, adventurous
What were you doing before working at Grok?
I was working in Dubai in a student recruitment role for a pathway provider. Before moving to Dubai, I also managed the Saigon branch of UKEAS – a well-respected education agency. I joined UKEAS initially in Taiwan where I also completed a master’s degree at National Chengchi University.
What was your first job in education?
The University of Birmingham Business School in the UK. I worked alongside a number of academic members of staff to recruit students from partner universities in China, South Korea, and Kazakhstan directly into the Department of Economics.
What does international education mean for you?
International education facilitates the exchange of knowledge between people and cultures. It brings us together like nothing else does, and helps us to understand one another more deeply.
What is one of the most satisfying outcomes you’ve helped a client to achieve?
When working in Vietnam I helped develop a network of UK high schools to recruit Vietnamese students. A lot of these clients had never invested in South East Asia prior to our engagements and recruited their first Vietnamese students during my tenure. It was a genuine pleasure to get to know the schools and see how much diversifying their student body meant to them.
Why is it important for institutions to have a presence in Asia?
Asia is home to some of the world’s largest economies – and of equal importance – home to some of the world’s fastest-growing economies. Countries like India, Vietnam, and Malaysia have a rapidly emerging middle class that looks favourably upon a western education, and so, it’s imperative that universities looking to recruit from these countries meeting prospective students head-on in market.
What is your favourite movie?
What is your dream travel destination? Why?
I’d love to go to Kyrgyzstan but if I can cheat and choose 1 more I’d go with Iraqi Kurdistan. I’m fascinated with that place but unfortunately didn’t get round to visiting during my time in the Gulf. Erbil – its regional capital – is home to one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in the world (Erbil Citadel) which is pretty cool.
What is your favourite food to eat with friends?
I’d have to go with a Taiwanese re chao which is essentially a collection of hot stir-fried dishes usually served with lots of freshly brewed beer. This meal was invented to be enjoyed in the company of friends.
What is something you’ve learned from somebody inspirational?
Someone who has been an inspiration to me since I was a child is the late Sir Bobby Robson. He is a well-known figure in the football world and acted as a mentor to both Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola.
He was a successful manager in Holland, Spain (where he managed Barcelona), Portugal, and England where he coached the team I follow, Newcastle United. To me, he represents a man driven by a sense of adventure who wanted to test himself outside of his comfort zone and succeeded. From an early age that inspired me to live oversees and try and see things from a different cultural perspective.