Our team is passionate about higher education and its transformative possibilities.

We have an expert Council of Senior Advisors from across the sector to provide independent insights on those projects that are particularly complex.

We also have extensive networks that we leverage for the benefit of our clients.

Michael Wells +

BA LLB (Melb)
M Marketing (Melb)

Mr Michael Wells, Founding Director, is one of the most respected advisers in the sector with an enduring reputation built over the last twenty years. He established Wells Advisory in recognition of the need for tailored, higher education consulting services provided by those who have a sophisticated knowledge of the complexity of the sector.

Michael advises higher education start-ups on market entry and governance, established non-university higher education providers on strategic and regulatory matters, financial modelling, business case development and provides project management and advisory services to universities on major projects.

Michael was a full-time Commissioner at the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA). Before his appointment at TEQSA, Michael was the Executive Director of Finance and Planning and a member of the Senior Executive Committee and Academic Board at the University of Melbourne from 2005 to 2011. During his tenure at the University of Melbourne, he oversaw university-wide planning, quality, budgets, reporting and major project approvals.

Prior to that, Michael spent almost a decade with Beaton Global, consulting to a wide range of clients in the public and private sectors.

Ph: +61 418 316 606, E:

Michael Wells

Sarah Griggs +

BA (Hons) (Melb)

Ms Sarah Griggs, Principal, has worked in higher education for more two decades, bringing extensive experience in strategy development and implementation of large-scale business transformation projects.

At Wells Advisory, she advises on strategic and business planning, student profile planning and organisational change. She partners with clients to establish appropriate management frameworks to design and enable start-up education providers and enhance the performance of existing institutions.  Sarah has a deep understanding of large, complex organisations which enables insightful reviews of operations and organisational structures, leading to the development of performance plans, frameworks and KPIs to drive improvement.

Previously, Sarah held senior leadership roles at the University of Melbourne, including the Director, University Strategy, Planning and Performance and the General Manager, Faculty of Arts. Sarah led the production of the University of Melbourne’s strategic plan, Growing Esteem 2015-2020. As part of the University of Melbourne’s Business Improvement Program (BIP), she designed the function and profile of the one of the nine service functions in University Services – the Business Intelligence and Reporting team. She also oversaw the establishment of the University of Melbourne’s business intelligence strategy, governance and function, organisational KPI design and monitoring, strategic risk.

Ph: +61 438 576 644, E;

Sarah Griggs

Dr Paula Kelly +

Senior Consultant
BA(Hons) (Mon)
Grad Cert Quality Assurance (Melb)
MA (Mon)
PhD (Melb)

Dr Paula Kelly, Senior Consultant, has experience and qualifications in higher education regulation and quality assurance and has held roles in government and academia. Paula advises on higher education policy settings, quality assurance, regulation and accreditation.

Prior to joining Wells Advisory, Paula was an academic and researcher with the Centre for the Study of Higher Education Research (CSHE) at the University of Melbourne and is currently an Honorary Fellow. Paula has contributed to several higher education research projects including the quality assurance of online learning, enhancing the student experience, identifying strategies for alumni tracking, and assuring graduate communication skills. Paula publishes in higher education and is joint editor of Visions for Australian Tertiary Education (with Richard James and Sarah French) (CSHE, 2017).

Previously, Paula held a regulatory role with TEQSA and teaching roles at Monash University and the University of Melbourne.

Ph: +61 427 318 362, E:

Paula Kelly

Dr Diem-Hang Tran-Nguyen +

MChem (St Andrews)
PhD (Cambridge)

Dr Diem-Hang Tran-Nguyen, Consultant, was a strategy advisor at the University of Melbourne and Monash University, prior to joining Wells Advisory. She started her career as a strategy consultant with L.E.K. Consulting in London and Melbourne, specialising in corporate growth strategies and merger and acquisition due diligence support.

Diem-Hang’s combination of higher education and strategy consulting is highly complementary to our clients’ needs. Her expertise spans across data analytics, quantitative modelling, strategic planning, and business case development, including designing and implementing research and analysis to evaluate growth options and feasibility. She has successfully led cross-functional teams to deliver innovative, evidence-based solutions to complex strategic issues.

Having worked at some of Australia’s leading universities, Diem-Hang has a deep understanding of the dynamics of academic institutions and is able to tailor her consulting approach to suit each institution’s needs. Diem-Hang holds a PhD from the University of Cambridge.

Ph: +61 419 030 733, E: 

Janelle Brooks +

Office Manager

Janelle Brooks is the Office Manager at Wells Advisory. She has an extensive background and qualifications in administration and human resource management, specializing in employee relations and has previously held roles as Executive Assistant, Administration Manager, and Human Resources Business Partner in a range of sectors, including media, retail and insurance. Janelle has also run her own business. Most recently, Janelle has been Practice Manager of a busy Eastern Suburbs dental practice.  Janelle holds an Undergraduate Diploma in Human Resource Management from Thames Valley University (England) and a Certificate of Office Management (Box Hill Institute).

Ph: +61 432 777 170, E: