Highlights of 2020

Despite the difficulties 2020 has brought, our staff & students have once again shown their incredible skill and talent through a number of award wins.

As 2020 comes to a close we want to highlight all of the incredible accomplishments our talented students & staff have achieved.


  • This year, our Bachelor of Media Design students won two 2020 Good Design Awards, three 2020 Best Awards and first place in Visual Communication & Illustration at the ECC NZ Student Craft & Design.


  • The AdSchool won five AdStars awards,  first place and the runner up at the 2020 ORCAs, a D&AD New Blood Pencil and the Google Student Axis Award, with three ideas going forward for judging in 2021.  


  • Bachelor of Art and Design student film Prickly Jam was screened at fourteen film festivals around the world, snapping up the awards for Best Animated Film at the South Dakota Film Fest and Best Screenplay at Show Me Shorts.


  • Kino Ratten, another Bachelor of Art and Design student film, was screened at seven festivals worldwide, winning the Best Family Short Award at the Irvine International Film Fest and Best Animated Short at the Palm Springs International Animation Fest.


  • Showcasing over 40 top institutions from across New Zealand, MDS and Torrens partnered to deliver NZ’s first Virtual Careers Expo Thursday 18 and Friday 19 June


  • We held our first ever Virtual Open Day, along with introducing a series of webinars to our event calendar which let us connect with prospective students even in lockdown.


  • Despite this being a really challenging year for events, we still hosted two successful Girls in Games events, including our first ever Virtual Senior Dev Day.


  • In November we were lucky enough to an in-person graduation to celebrate our students’ achievements.  We had two ceremonies in one day, making it MDS’s biggest graduation day ever!


  • We received NZQA approval to deliver our programmes online onshore & offshore. We will be able to provide a world-class education to those who wish to study from home & those overseas who are unable to come to NZ.


  • We supported our community, in partnership with Torrens, with the launch of twelve free short courses.  Since the start of November, almost 500 learners have accessed the platform with nearly 1200 courses accessed so far.


  • The Media Design School rebrand won silver at the Transform ANZ Awards for best visual identity in the education sector – a huge achievement for the team who put a lot of hard work into that change!  


Congratulations to every one of our students, we are so proud! 

MDS Grad
Graduating students at our MDS 2020 Graduation
Bachelor of Media Design End of Year Show