Generation Grit: Stint in army detention barracks strengthened his resolve to finish his studies

When his family ran into financial difficulties, Mr Lee Rui Xuan dropped everything to help them. He quit school to work, and even faked illness in the army to do part-time jobs. But he was caught for going Awol and sentenced to a stint in the army's detention barracks. His time there made him more determined to succeed, and go back to school after a five-year hiatus.

Mr Lee Rui Xuan scored a GPA of 3.88 in his first year, and received an SP Engineering Scholarship.
Mr Lee Rui Xuan scored a GPA of 3.88 in his first year, and received an SP Engineering Scholarship.ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

SINGAPORE - Once a star pupil in school, Mr Lee Rui Xuan hit rock bottom in 2017, when he was thrown into the army's detention barracks for being absent without official leave (Awol) from camp during his national service (NS).

To make matters worse, his secondary school classmates serving their NS in the military police were his wardens.

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