Professor Alwyn Louw


Professor Alwyn Louw was appointed Vice-Chancellor of Torrens University in January 2020 following a distinguished 20-year career in senior academic leadership and management experience. This included serving as President of the University and Academic President at Monash South Africa, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic and Research at Vaal University of Technology (South Africa) and Vice Principal at the University of South Africa.

A sociologist by training, Professor Louw has published extensively on a broad range of issues including societal development, gender equity, civil society and community, future of education, new generation universities, research and innovation. Professor Louw is also highly regarded for his work in building new approaches to higher education by ensuring access to high-quality education for all through a deliberate focus shift to inclusivity and affordability.

Professor Louw has extensive private, civic and charitable sector experience including serving as Chair and Director of South Africa Private Higher Education, Chair of Board of Directors for Africa, Operation Mobilisation, President of South African Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Chair Pro Christo Global Mission and Chair of Cancer Association in Kimberley (South Africa).

Professor Louw studied Sociology (BA Hons and Masters) at the University of the Free State (South Africa) and obtained his PhD in Sociology from Vista University (South Africa).



Professor Justin was appointed to the role of Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research in January 2020 before this he was Vice-Chancellor. Justin is focused on driving a major growth phase that includes the development of vibrant academic communities across Business & Hospitality, Creative Technology & Design, and Health & Education verticals, continued development and launch of new programs, national campus expansion and the fostering of innovative research programs.As a dual sector University Justin believes in the importance of the VET Sector in developing a balanced and sustainable workforce to satisfy the needs of the whole Australian community. Providing broad educational access to as many students as possible is a real passion for him. In the research area Universities are being challenged to work in trusted partnerships with industry and this is seen as a priority for all the research development within Torrens University. Justin believes that students need to graduate with world class discipline knowledge and with documented skills in working in teams, critical thinking, collaboration and problem solving. Industry placements should become, over time a core requirement for all students as we provide the educational pathways for satisfying employment

Working in partnership with 75 Laureate Universities, world wide and drawing upon the combined intellectual input of a global academic team it is an exciting and captivating time as the University continues to grow and expand. Justin is Chairing the establishment of a new global research health service partnership with academic colleagues in South America, Spain, United States and Mexico.

Justin has demonstrated experience and skills in research, both clinical and policy related, workforce planning, financial and people management, philanthropic funding, leading major capital programs, leading change programs and governance. Justin is a qualified practising General Practitioner, board member and leader in primary care/general practice reform in Australia over the past 20 years, combined with an extensive senior management career.



Professor Emeritus Helmut Lueckenhausen is Pro Vice Chancellor Academic at Torrens University and Deputy Director Academic Think Education. He leads the academic team within the Office of the Vice Chancellor covering the Centre for Learning, Teaching & Scholarship, Learning Services and chairs the Retention Project, the Executive Learning and Teaching Committee and the Academic Policy and Appeals Committees of the Academic Board.”Helmut has many years’ experience in the academic aspects of design, from a lecturer in 3D Design to Dean, Faculty of Design at Swinburne University of Technology. Helmut led the Faculty (previously the National School of Design) into becoming a significant international force in the field of design, including increasing onshore international student numbers eightfold as well setting up programs in Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore. Successful programs were similarly set up with Billy Blue in Sydney. Helmut led the establishment of the National Institute for Design Research, and the development of new policies and programs for design practice-led research and re-introduced the Swinburne School of Film and Television. Most recently, Helmut was Pro Vice-Chancellor Internationalisation at Swinburne, providing senior academic leadership and advocacy including curriculum developments, staff capability, graduate attributes, and the research endeavour. Previous to this role, Helmut was Pro Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive, Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak.

Helmut is a leading exponent in the field of studio furniture and design for wood, having maintained a regular national and international lecture program, including forum, conference and workshop presentations. His work is in the collections of the Australian National Gallery and state collections throughout Australia. He was honoured with a survey exhibition of his life’s work 11 April – 11 June 2015 by the Art Gallery of Warrnambool.

Business & Hospitality



At Torrens, Greg is Dean, Business & Hospitality, following his role as Pro Vice Chancellor, Business and Entrepreneurship. In this role, he provides educational and academic leadership for Torrens University’s business and hospitality programs. A key focus is the growth of these programs in Australia by providing programs that ensure students are both very employable and resourceful. These highly valued programs will be delivered in most capital cities and online. A second key focus is developing executive learning and development programs for organisations in Australia. The final key focus is the development of strategies to foster and facilitate industry engagement across the University to enhance the employment outcomes of graduates and to promote industry-engaged research.

Greg Harper is a highly experienced educator, executive, leader, and consultant. The former General Manager of Swinburne Industry Solutions, Greg has held a number of senior executive positions in the public and private sectors: for example, Chief Executive of a large Queensland TAFE Institute and a Senior Executive in the Queensland Department of Education and Training. He is a highly experienced organisational development consultant having worked with some of Australia’s leading corporations. As a leader, Greg’s focus is on developing people by providing coaching and developmental assignments.




Dr Mieke Leppens, Dean of Design and Creative Technology brings 30 years expertise from both academia and design practice to her role. Ensuring the maintenance of the highest standard in teaching, scholarship and research she leads an international academic team to teaching excellence and research as well as the development of external industry and academic community relationships. Mieke has been the Dean of now the Design and Creative Technology Vertical since 2016 and is not new to the Vertical. She has been consecutively been Program Director of Branded Fashion Design, a degree she developed and launched in the Vertical as well as Head of Academic studies for Post-Graduate courses since 2010 at Billy Blue College of Design.

During this time, Mieke has led faculty through several changes such developing and establishing the Masters of Design, the accreditation of the Undergraduate and Post-Graduate Software Engineering degrees and the Design and Creative Technology Reseach Centre. She introduced Problem Based Learning into the new Common Core curriculum leading design practice and industry by enabling students in all areas of design to cultivate, in this computer age, highly valued soft skills such as empathy, collaboration, research and negotiation.

Having worked in many aspects of product design, from designing and the creation of meaning through branding, technological innovations in design and applied research, her interest lies in furthering design education through the adoption of emerging creative technologies, design-in-practice and design-as-practice to drive innovation in curriculum beneficial for the students, their future career opportunities and their lifelong professional endeavours as well as faculty. She actively works towards the internationalisation of the Australian design industry and has international relationships through both diplomatic and independent channels having a unique understanding of the intricacies of cultural exchanges but more importantly the value added and many benefits this brings to the country of origin and profession at large.




Cath is a registered nurse and a health education and research leader with a national reputation for balancing ‘heart and head’. Building from her nursing background plus her bachelor’s studies in psychology, Cath’s PhD focused on rural women’s resilience in the face of breast cancer, Cath has continued her focus on resilience as an emotional strength which has application for nurses and other health care professionals, as well as for those living with illness. Her PhD students have extended this focus to include explorations of the health-related experiences of frail elderly people accessing health care, women with postnatal depression, university students and cancer survivors who have found strength through spirituality and connections to the land.Cath is excited to be part of Torrens, an emerging, dynamic university which is disruptive in intent and focused on establishing a national reputation as a leader in health professional education and targeted research including positive ageing

Before commencing at Torrens, Cath led the USQ nursing and midwifery school for over a decade, and oversaw its significant expansion including new campuses, new programs and new pathways for nurses and midwives.

Cath has contributed strongly at the national and state level to a health professional clinical education strategy, including working with Health Workforce Australia and chairing the Southern Queensland Clinical Education Regional Training Network. She was instrumental in the establishment of one of Australia’s newest University Departments of Rural Health (Southern Queensland Rural Health). She held the Sr Elizabeth Kenny Chair in Nursing, including the role of Director of the Australian Centre for Rural and Remote Evidence Based Practice (ACRREBP) for five years.

Cath was honoured for her contribution to the University of Southern Queensland and to health education and research, with the honorary award of ‘Professor Emeritus’ in 2018.