Steffan Irugalbandara



Bachelor of Management



Graduation year


Current position

Brand Executive


With his passion for brand and community building, Steffan's experience has led him to obtain multiple marketing roles across Deakin University, Singapore Airlines and Monash University.

Q&A with Steffan

What has been your journey since completing your studies?

Immediately following my graduation at Deakin University, I worked in various Marketing and Communications roles in the Faculty of Business and Law at Deakin for five years. One of my highlights during this time was when I had the opportunity to lead the Marketing and Communications team in a Coordinator role initiating various brand building campaigns for both Deakin Business School and Deakin Law School. I also undertook a Master of Marketing from Monash University with the aim of enhancing my knowledge in market research and consumer behaviour. Following my employment at Deakin, I had the opportunity to take on a Brand Executive role at the worlds most awarded airline, Singapore Airlines. Working for such a global organisation not only provided me great exposure to the aviation sector, but allowed me to work on large scale brand campaigns and gain first-hand experience in managing crisis communications during COVID-19. Most recently, I have secured a role as a Marketing Manager at Monash University leading their Professional Development space.

Did you always want to pursue this career? What impacted your decision regarding this?

I have always been passionate about brand and community building and believe that marketing and communications is a key cornerstone for this. My studies at Deakin University and the various interactions I had with my academics fuelled this passion. Engaging in various activities at Deakin, such as internships allowed me to not only build my skills and experience, but most importantly establish a proper career path in Marketing, Communications and Brand Management.

What guiding principles have helped you succeed?

When it comes to marketing, it’s always important to stay up to date with the latest trends, consumer behaviour etc. So, I use this as a principle to keep up to date and always research and monitor the market. I have also found that sticking to the marketing fundamentals should never be taken for granted.

What advice would you give someone wanting to pursue a similar career path to you?

I would advise having an open mind and always being on the lookout for the latest marketing innovations, best-selling ad campaigns and high engaging social media activities. Understanding what consumers engage with, what they buy, how they buy, who influences them to buy are all important considerations to keep in my mind in any marketing role. I would also advise to regularly engage with your marketing peers, colleagues, and academics to stay in touch and discover opportunities available within the industry.

What are you passionate about outside of your work?

Outside of work, I’m an adventure enthusiast with a passion for content creation and traveling the world (essentially, I’m an avid travel photographer). I’m passionate about sharing hidden gems and unique perspectives of the world through adventure, landscape and aerial photo and videography. Utilising my crisp and aesthetic style, I consistently deliver high quality content that effectively captures the attention of my audience. I showcase this content on my Instagram page: @mindofsteffan

How did you come to choose Deakin for your studies?

Deakin was recommended by friends and family.

What were some of your best experiences as a student at Deakin?

I cherish the time being part of the student mentor group at Deakin and having the chance to win multiple academic awards such as the prestigious ‘2015 Bowater Trust Medal’.

How has COVID-19 impacted your professional lifestyle and how have you coped with this?

Commencing my new role at Monash during the pandemic amidst constant lockdowns has been challenging, particularly in a role where relationship building is paramount. However, I have been proactive to reach out to colleagues virtually to build those connections while being empathetic in understanding everyone’s differing circumstances.