In today's interview, we asked the Youth Time ambassador from Singapore, Alex Lew, to share his path, his goals, motivation, and to give advice to the future ambassadors.
Today Youth Time Magazine is going to introduce our fourth Youth Time Ambassador, Alex Lew. Alex is a migrant rights activist from Singapore. Recently he has shifted his work to focus on climate change and green tech.
Alex graduated with High Honours in History and Archaeology (SOAS) and Law (Temasek Polytechnic). In order to fight against the stereotypes about migrant workers in Singapore, he co-founded Migrant Library Singapore, a platform of interaction for 17,700 migrant workers. Among his work achievements are his work experiences for several International Affairs organizations such as ASEAN Foundation, Asia-European Foundation, and YSEALI.
When did you first hear about Youth Time?
I got to know about Youth Time through attending the Youth Global Forum held in Amsterdam. I was one of the three participants who are offered fully-funded opportunities at this event for my essay on the 5th Industrial Revolution.
Why did you decide to become a Youth Time ambassador?
I find now is a good time to step up and connect with fellow young people who are as passionate and ‘woke’ as me. Young people who want to improve their work through their passion and skillsets. Our future ahead is more uncertain than ever. With the rise of Artificial Intelligence and a decentralized economy, many traditional institutions have to find new ways to engage with the populace.
Cooperation today is more relevant than ever before. I am interested in how at home, in Singapore, our institutions can embrace digitalization and collaborate with others and embrace diversity. This makes uncertainty exciting. We can collaborate and embrace diversity, regional stability, and addressing shared challenges.
As a young activist, I am thrilled to have many opportunities to interact and explore many youth programs such as YSEALI, SSEAYP, and COP26 that allow me to meet other like-minded young people and I would like to translate this into policy.
Now that you were chosen to be one of the ambassadors, what has changed in your life?
I am not in a leadership position and have more responsibility but it feels good to make things work. Especially like-minded individuals who are passionate about policy, current affairs, and future thinking as I am. Despite many programs being pushed online, during my internship with ASEAN Foundation, I designed, implemented, and constructed the inaugural ASEAN data science explorer competition by drawing consultants, judges, and participants from 10 different ASEAN countries and it turned out to be a huge success.
What are you most excited about in this program?
I love meeting new people and hearing their stories.
What inspired you? Who are your role models?
My greatest role model is my Grandfather, he was a successful businessman and lifted my family out of poverty.
Is there an achievement or contribution you are most proud of?
In 2020, I won first place in the Young ASEAN Top Policy Initiator Award 2020 organized by Chulalongkorn University. In 2016, I represented Singapore at the Sports Sambo World Championships.
What was the biggest challenge you were facing and how did you solve it?
I used to be afraid of flying. But now, I overcame it by facing the problem head-on, taking more flights.
What would you say to someone considering becoming a Youth Time ambassador next year?
Be Bold. Aim High. Never Give Up
Photo courtesy of Alex Lew
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