Interest in coding led him to study cyber security

Mr Lye Jia Jun, 20, chanced upon coding online when he was 15, and became hooked.

He learnt programming through online videos to increase his odds of getting a place in the cyber-security and digital forensics course at Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP).

In 2019, he became the first polytechnic student here selected to lead a Google developer student club. These clubs are community groups bringing together college and university students to help them grow their knowledge in a peer-to-peer learning environment and build solutions for local businesses and their community.

Mr Lye graduated from NYP this year and received the Lee Kuan Yew Award for Mathematics and Science at the graduation ceremony on May 5.

On why he chose his course of study, he said: "The course caught my eye because it was very intriguing - you are protecting cyberspace. And there are also very good job prospects."

Mr Lye learnt of the Google student club through the NYP course coordinator. He was doubtful of being shortlisted, but applied for it. After two rounds of interviews, he was picked to lead the club.

He said: "I did not expect that I would be selected at all because I think this programme was really targeted at university students."

The NYP developer student club has enrolled over 60 members since it was set up in November 2019. Members organise events and work on IT projects, aiming to give back to the community.

Mr Lye also organised programming workshops to help his fellow students. One notable initiative, Code Clinic, was a fortnightly tuition service to help first-year students cope with the programming module during the circuit breaker last year. Over 130 first-year students participated in Code Clinic.

Mr Lye said he hopes to become a technopreneur and harness the power of technology to make a positive impact on society.

Mr Lye Jia Jun, who graduated from Nanyang Polytechnic this month, was the first poly student here to lead a Google developer student club in 2019. PHOTO: NANYANG POLYTECHNIC

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 14, 2021, with the headline 'Interest in coding led him to study cyber security'. Subscribe