Grit and design offer him winning future
Mr Goh Han Wei, 21, is an outstanding Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) industrial design graduate who is pursuing his passion, but his life did not start out so well.
Due to his family's financial situation, he was admitted to a children's home and brought up by The Salvation Army. Mr Goh struggled to deal with the new environmentand gradually adapted, and his studies started to pick up.
"I learnt a lot from the shelter, being sent there was good for me," he said. "I feel blessed; I don't see it as a sad story, it was just a situation I had to adapt to."
In Secondary 4, he took design and technology as a subject. That was when he discovered his passion for design.
He placed first in his cohort and took a Nitec course in product design at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE).
"ITE taught me a lot of practical skills that the other freshmen hadn't learnt yet, so my first year in NYP went quite smoothly," said Mr Goh.
"I wanted to do well, so I gave it my all in NYP. Sometimes I would pull all-nighters to finish projects."
Mr Goh, who graduated this year, took up a part-time job as a barista to finance his studies and living expenses. He worked 12 hours a week.
He achieved excellent grades and was placed on the Director's List for five semesters. With NYP's support, he won the AsiaStar Award, the Singapore Star Packaging Star Award, and got third place in the Electrolux Sustainable Urban Living 2016 competition.
Last year, he received the NTUC Income OrangeAid Award.
On May 3, Mr Goh received the HP Innovation Design Award at NYP's Graduation 2017.
Mr Goh thanked his lecturer, Mr Ng Ka Wai, who was one of several people who helped him.
"I ask him for advice quite often. he can see the most negative situations in a positive light," he said.
Mr Goh now works as a designer at local gallery shop Supermamaand intends to pursue a degree in industry and product design.
He aspires to be a designer who creates products that help people.
"To the students facing difficulty in school: Work as hard as you can. Just do it," he said. - RENI CHNG