Our Team

Navtej Bal

Chief Executive Officer

Navtej Bal is the CEO and Managing Director of Ironwood Institute. He is dynamic and focused individual who believes in” Impossible is nothing”. Apart from his post graduation from RMIT University, Melbourne and eight years of extensive experience in management of international colleges, Navtej brings on board his personal success story as an international student who arrived in Australia 13 years ago.

Navtej believes in seizing opportunities from the challenges and embrace positivity and innovation.

He is passionate about helping student to become employment ready in a rapidly changing world and students look upon him to be great guide, helpful and trustworthy through all times of their study journey with Ironwood.

Victoria Pearce

Partnerships Manager

With more than 20 years working in the international education sector Victoria’s knowledge of the marketplace is extensive. She works with the Institute partners to ensure students get the best opportunities possible to develop their skills and create their careers. With a focus on acquisitions of new organisations and funding opportunities her role is to establish sustainable long term agreements to deliver mutually beneficial outcomes for Ironwood and its partners.

Jennifer Bourne

Student Support and Administration Officer

Jennifer has extensive know-how in management, with over 5 years’ experience in the international education sector. With strengths in people, communication and team management, she has the ability to give full support to our team and agents.

She looks after all the Admissions for Ironwood to make sure the Letters of Offer, Confirmations of Enrolment and any other documents are issued in a perfect and timely manner.

Jennifer’s other roles include Quality Administration and ensuring that our administrative areas of the institute are to the highest quality and meets all the requirements that relate to a Registered Training Organisation (RTO).

Camilo Esparza

Agribusiness Educator

Camilo holds a Master of Global Food and Agricultural Business from the University of Adelaide, and a Bachelor of Animal Husbandry from the National University of Colombia (South America) where he is originally from. Camilo has participated in research across 6 countries in the Pacific and in Indonesia, focusing in livelihood benefits of smallholder farmers.

Some of his areas of expertise include understanding market and consumer drivers and implementing value chain analysis across industry sectors. His new role as a trainer at Ironwood will allow him to prepare students for a fast growing agribusiness sector. Camilo aims to deliver high quality training in a dynamic way, bringing key elements from innovation and systems theory.

Noel Johnston

Horticulture Educator

Noel is the educator for the Diploma of Horticulture course. Hailing from the Riverland, Noel has been teaching horticulture for over a decade with specialist skills in irrigation.  In addition, he has extensive experience working in the industry in improving water use and efficiency.

Soon Teik Oon

Diploma of Leadership and Management Educator

Soon Teik has 20 years of education/training experiences in institutions in Australia, Malaysia and China including the University of Nottingham, the University of Adelaide and Kaplan Business School. His experiences include working with both public and international universities in China, lecturing and developing course structure and syllabus for their International Business course module.

Apart from teaching, he was involved in coordinating work, formulating lesson plans and methods of delivery to non-English speaking students, providing students with academic advice and support to prepare them for their continuing studies and cultural change in Australia.

In addition to that, Soon has over 15 years’ experience in the corporate sector. He has held position such as Principal Consultant, engaging in international consulting and development in the Asian region, particularly Australia, China, Indonesia and Malaysia. His work includes working in high level cross cultural understanding of small/medium sized businesses. SoonTeik was also Branch Manager with a Fortune 500 company, before venturing into consultancy.

Lynn Zhuo

Diploma of Social Media Marketing Educator

Lynn has over fifteen years’ experience in marketing, having strategised and implemented marketing plans in over eight countries. Working in a variety of industries including Finance and Banking, Logistics and IT. Lynn has thrived in assisting public listed companies in their overseas expansion plans and building small start-ups for entrepreneurs.

Lynn was working as a Lecturer in Singapore for six years before moving to Adelaide to focus on her educational career in the emerging digital marketing arena.

Komal Sodhi

Advanced Diploma of Leadership and Management and Advanced Diploma of Marketing and Communication Educator

Komal has over 15 years of international education and training experience, specialising in business, leadership, management, marketing and accounting. She also has industry experience as an accountant. With Masters in both Education and Commerce/Management, Komal is our Advanced Diploma educator in both the Marketing and Management streams.

Milena Marques

Marketing Coordinator & Student Support

Milena looks after Ironwood’s Social Media platforms, planning and managing digital marketing content including the content, artworks, photography and student testimonial videos.  As an alumni of the Institute’s university pathway, Melina is able to support students following this career route.

Milena has a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing. In 2018 she moved to Adelaide from Brazil, to commence her Graduate Diploma of Strategic Leadership at Ironwood. This was followed by a Master’s Degree in Business from Torrens University Australia. Noteworthy is that Milena’s started as a student at Ironwood and has returned as a valued staff member.

Junyi He

Student Admissions and Administration

Junyi manages Ironwood’s International student admissions.  He is available to guide everyone through initial applications, the admission paperwork and visa processing stages.  With a Masters of Commerce in Business Analytics from the University of New South Wales, he understands the complexity of the application process and works to ensure that applications are successfully processed in a timely manner.  Junyi’s personal journey as an international student from China enables him to support our students and agents in joining Ironwood Institute.

Dr Kalyan Dhanagopalan

Horticulture Educator

Dr Kalyan is the Diploma of Horticulture Educator. With a specialty in plant nutrition and protection, he offers our students a fantastic insight into the successful development of crops from propagation to harvesting. Dr Kalyan has taught at all levels of students, from hands-on vocational education through to Ph.D. supervision. In addition, he has undertaken extensive research into the management of crops and resource conservation for sustainability.

Rahul Gakhar

Horticulture Educator

Rahul is an experienced horticulturalists who teaches the Certificate III in Horticulture course. With a background in sustainable management of active turf and passive reserves, landscape design, streetscapes, vertical and terrace gardens, tree care, farm, and nursery management he has a strong record of achievements in various roles across global organisations. Rahul is able to impart his expertise to our students to ensure they gain practical, hands-on skills in a wide range of areas to suit both the nursery, amenity horticultural, landscape, and food production areas.

Yennifer Moreno

Agent Engagement Officer

Yennifer can answer the various questions asked by students and agents about what courses Ironwood offers, which one may meet your needs and how you can become a student with the Institute. With extensive experience working with education providers and agents she has a good knowledge of the various needs of students, their families, student visas and admission level required. Yennifer is also the first port of call for agents, looking after marketing material, training and compliance needs of agents.