Alwis Lim Wei Yao
Diploma in Infocomm Security Management (DISM)

Lee Kuan Yew Award

A digital steward who serves the community

Alwis knew that he wanted to pursue a career in the technology sector even before coming to Singapore Polytechnic (SP). The Chung Cheng High School (Yishun) alumnus has been training with the SP fencing team on campus since secondary school. It gradually became a space where he felt comfortable. “Many of my seniors went on to study at SP. Naturally, SP was my first choice when I decided to pursue my diploma studies,” he said.

His decision to study information technology was met with hesitance from his parents, as they were not confident that his interest in the field could be sustained. Undeterred, Alwis participated in an international coding contest organised by Google for pre-university students and emerged as one of the 54 grand prize winners. His achievement alleviated his parents’ worries, and they gave him their full support to pursue his desired course at SP.

An informative article on network security also piqued Alwis’ curiosity on the topic; he liked how it allowed him to expand on his coding knowledge and come up with solutions to secure the software that has been developed. Describing it as a natural complement to the functions which the software had to perform, it also had to be secure so that its functions were not compromised by malicious actions. It also affirmed his decision to apply for the Diploma in Infocomm Security Management (DISM) via the Early Admissions Exercise.

An avid volunteer with compassion to serve others, the Lee Kuan Yew Award recipient also gives back to the community actively. In particular, he spent more than a year organising digital literacy workshops for disadvantaged children who lived in rental flats in Kebun Baru. As digital devices were becoming a basic need, Alwis shared that he wanted to enable them to catch up with their more digitally connected peers. The children benefited from the workshops and learnt how to use Zoom for educational and recreational purposes. The experience also made Alwis realise the joy that volunteering brings and show gratitude for what he has.

This selfless contribution was one of many that earned him the prestigious National Young Leader Award in 2021 which was presented by Deputy Prime Minster Heng Swee Keat. Alwis also holds other leadership roles in youth organisations such as the People’s Association Youth Movement Canberra Youth Network and Youth Corps Singapore. He also contributed actively to Cyber Youth Singapore in various roles, including being the Chief Executive of the Collective division.

Despite having a busy school life and active volunteering schedule, Alwis believes in the importance of time management. The structured digital steward organises his day around tasks to be completed, rather than adhering to a fixed routine. His prudent management proved effective, as he found time to take up sailing in his final year at SP. He quipped, “It was not only a great way to recharge from my studies and activities, but it allowed me to make new lifelong friends too.”

With a desire to attain more working experiences that could only be found outside of the classroom, Alwis secured an eye-opening year-long internship with GovTech. He was tasked to analyse malware and develop cybersecurity measures to fix them. Overall, the experience exposed him to real-life situations and issues which he would not be able to learn in class. He also had a new respect for cybersecurity engineers who race against time to keep digital users safe from ever-changing cyber threats and attacks.

After National Service, Alwis intends to further his studies in the United States majoring in Computer Science and Business as he believes it gives him a more rounded perspective and how technology can be applied to other sectors.


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