A former drug offender, Mr Alex Lim eventually overcame adversity to make it to university. He also bagged the SHINE 'Youth Inspiration' award this year.
The 23-year-old's spiral into delinquency began in primary school, when he started smoking when he was only 10 years old.
In secondary school, he started peddling drugs and selling illegal VCDs.
He ended up being arrested by the police in 2001 for his offences and was suspended from school.
At the age of 15, he was sent to the Boys' Home for reformative training.
This proved to be the turning point in his life.
While at the home, Alex had the time to reflect on his life and was wrecked with guilt that he was not around to look after his aged parents.
He decided to change for the better and studied hard for his examinations. He took the exams as a private candidate, topping his cohort in both the GCE 'N' and 'O' Level examinations.
His excellent results allowed him to enter Nanyang Technological University (NTU) this year, where he will read mechanical engineering.
Alex admitted that he had caused his family a lot of grief during his rebellious years, but is thankful that he had the opportunity to turn over a new leaf and rebuild his life.
Now, he hopes to help others in the same situation.
He says no matter what career he chooses in the future, he hopes to continue to provide support and help to youths who have lost their path in life.
Alex is also the Youth Ambassador of Youthworks!, an alumni for youth making social contributions.
The SHINE youth award is conferred to those aged between 15 to 35, who have made significant contributions to the community.
A total of 5 awardees received the prize from Community Development, Youth and Sports Minister Dr Vivian Balakrishnan at a ceremony held on Aug 1.