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History & Identity

Vega was formed in 1999 in anticipation of the shift in the global paradigm away from conventional marketing and advertising toward a synchronous cohesion of design, branding and business. With the reconfiguration of traditional platforms and the emergence of new ones, it is the art, craft and science of branding that has become the universal language of the marketplace. Think of brands such as Google, Greenpeace and Apple: brands are far more than letters and logos but powerful cultural forces shaping the world as we know it.

Concomitant with this seismic shift in the industry landscape arose an urgent need to educate South Africa's most talented young minds in preparation for this brave new world. A new school of thought was called for and Vega answered that call. With branding being the DNA of Vega, the school is ideally positioned to meet the rapidly growing needs of industry by supplying students with the conceptual, strategic and practical skill-sets required to rise to the challenge of the future.

The World Economic Forum in 2016 revealed the findings of its study entitled The Ten Skills You Need to Thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The three skills topping this list are Complex Problem Solving; Critical Thinking and Creativity. These are the cornerstones upon which Vega is built. Vega therefore aims to graduate a new breed of thinker by delivering fully accredited Certificates, Baccalaureates, Honours and Masters programmes in brand leadership; brand management; brand innovation; brand strategy and creative brand communication.

Teaching Philosophy

At the heart of Vega's educational vision lies the principle of innovation. Brand and business strategies that merely repeat existing practices add limited value to the marketplace while iconoclasm and innovation unlock true potential. The same truth applies in the teaching and learning environment: without embodying the kind of innovation that propels industry, Vega would not be equipping students with the kind of minds required for them to become the future leaders they are destined to be.

It is a core purpose at Vega to have our students graduate at an industry-ready level. The high levels of academic pursuit are immediately put into practical use as Vega eschews the 'ivory tower' approach in favour of hands-on immediate application of theory. Vega students are constantly immersed in live briefs from industry clients so that when they graduate they are already well-versed in the turbulence of 'the real world' and slot seamlessly into any industry environment. The stellar careers of many of our highly successful alumni are testament to the success of this methodology. Furthermore, frequent interaction with the top-tier professionals and academics of the Vega Advisory Council help keep curriculae in line with the latest industry innovations.

Vega's teaching philosophy is built on the mantra of wisdomwithmagic. This reflects the conviction that the essence of branding lies in the fusion of strategy and creativity at the most fundamental level. In other words, a Vega student graduates with a deep understanding that the most effective strategy is inherently creative; the most effective creativity inherently strategic. This is in evidence most compellingly in Vega's famous Brand Challenge.

Similarly central to Vega's commitment to innovation in education is the concept of navigation. Vega takes its name from the star in the constellation of Lyra, widely described as the most important star in the sky after the sun. Vega is the navigational star and Vega lecturers are navigators, driven by the ethos of strategic guidance and creative direction as opposed to merely imparting information that is passively absorbed.


  • We believe that brands with meaning add value to how people live their lives.
  • We believe an organisation is responsible for its every decision and action.
  • We believe in the human imagination, in creativity and its power to impact what people think, feel and do.
  • We believe in borderless knowledge and a striving for excellence.

Accreditation & Governance

Vega is an educational brand of The Independent Institute of Education (Pty) Ltd which is registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training as a private higher education institution under the Higher Education Act, 1997 (reg. no. 2007/HE07/002). Company registration number: 1987/004754/07.

The Independent Institute of Education (The IIE) is the leading registered private provider of higher education in South Africa. The IIE is comprised of highly respected and recognised higher education brands in the form of Vega, Varsity College, Rosebank College, Design School Southern Africa (DSSA) and Forbes Lever Baker. The Independent Institute of Education offers qualifications and services on the campuses of these brands that are aligned with the focus and mission of that educational brand. All IIE qualifications offered at its brands are accredited by the Higher Education Quality Committee (HEQC) and registered by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA)

The IIE is responsible for conferring its qualifications offered at Vega, and is thus responsible for the quality of curriculum development, teaching, assessment and compliance with laws and regulations.

The Independent Institute of Education is now internationally accredited with The British Accreditation Council. This important achievement demonstrates that our standards are world-class and guarantees students complete confidence about the value of their qualifications. The British Accreditation Council is an independent authority in the UK that accredits private providers in the UK and in other countries such as Greece, Switzerland, Singapore, India, Mauritius and the United Arab Emirates.

Vega Advisory Council

Click here to view our Advisory Council members


The Independent Institute of Education earns international BAC Accreditation

Students looking for a future in brand excellence can now rest assured they are receiving world class education in the industry through Vega School of Brand Leadership (Vega), a brand of the Independent Institute of Education (the IIE). The educational brand will now benefit from accreditation granted to The IIE by The British Accreditation Council (BAC).

"The accreditation resonates with our mission to deliver South Africa's most academically and practically experienced learners and the new accreditation will be adding significant value to these objectives. It presents Vega students with the opportunity to be recognised not only locally but by global businesses and increase their employability even further," said Gordon Cook, Co-Founder of Vega.

Such an accreditation benefits both the institution and its students. The institution is awarded a mark of quality; accreditation by an independent and well-established national body, which is recognised in the UK and internationally. Accredited institutions also receive continuing advice and updates on relevant issues through regular email information bulletins and on the BAC website, professional development and invitations to attend best practice seminars and other professional development events.

Students at Vega will be reaping the benefits from May 2014, and see the BAC accreditation logo on their qualifications when they graduate in 2015.

"The BAC has been responsible for setting standards internationally within the independent higher education sector for the past 25 years. They provide the leading mark of quality for the education sector as a guarantee of standards. We are exceptionally proud to be able to offer this accreditation to our students. The accreditation will enhance Vega's credibility both locally and abroad. It's an important achievement that will give students confidence in the value of their qualifications" Cook concluded.