A total of 130 students in Singapore contributed more than 16,000 volunteer hours to the cybersecurity community as part of the Student Volunteer & Recognition Programme (SVRP) initiative in 2021. 2021 saw the highest number of volunteers and volunteer hours recorded since the launch of SVRP in 2019.
AiSP SVRP 2021 award winners with Minister-of-State, Ministry of Communications and Information & Ministry of National Development Mr Tan Kiat How (from left – Tay Gao Jun, Tay Ru Yi, Mr Tan Kiat How, Kevin Tan, Sng Jay Kai, Edwin Chua, Koh Liang Han, Lee Yi Terng)
Developed by the Association of Information Security Professionals (AiSP) and Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA), the SVRP aims to encourage volunteerism amongst students while honing their interest and capabilities in cybersecurity. SVRP, an initiative under CSA’s SG Cyber Youth Programme, receives strong support from local Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) as well as industry partners.
Minister of State, Ministry of Communications and Information & Ministry of National Development, Mr Tan Kiat How, graced the SVRP Awards Ceremony to recognise student volunteers for their contributions to the cybersecurity community in 2021. A total of 97 awards, including 5 Gold Awards, were given to student volunteers during the ceremony, recognising their passion, dedication, and contributions to the sector.
“With the accelerating pace of digitalisation, we see a huge demand for cybersecurity professionals in Singapore and around the world. The Government is committed to nurture a robust cyber talent pipeline and helping our youths to seize these exciting opportunities. The AiSP Student Volunteer Recognition Programme is a good platform for our youths to pick up cybersecurity skills, be guided by mentors, network with peers and apply their minds in tackling real world challenges. I congratulate all the awardees and wish them all the best in their cybersecurity journey!” said Mr Tan.
Each award recipient contributed at least 60 hours of volunteer work, with Gold Award recipients contributing at least 150 hours. One of the gold recipients, Tay Gao Jun from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, contributed over 1,400 volunteer hours in 2021. Gao Jun also received the Honorary Ambassador Award, having participated in and received the Gold Award for the SVRP for three consecutive years from 2019.
“We are heartened by the increase in volunteers and enthusiasm from the students. These indicate a greater level of awareness and passion for cybersecurity among youths. This is definitely a significant step in the right direction as we continue to build a sustainable cyber talent pipeline and narrow the considerable, chronic talent gap we face as an industry,” said Ms Soffenny Yap, AiSP EXCO Lead for Student Volunteer Recognition Programme.
Ensign is a longstanding industry partner supporting SVRP that AiSP has worked closely with to organise and deliver youth engagement and learning initiatives. These opportunities are tailored to help youths discover their aptitude and calling for cybersecurity while enabling them to acquire and hone practical skills relevant to their future professions. Ultimately, these initiatives aim to allow youths to better prepare themselves before they enter the workforce.
“Cultivating a robust and vibrant cyber talent pool is the common goal of AiSP and Ensign, and SVRP plays a key role in achieving this outcome. This is also part of Ensign’s multi-pronged strategy to create greater interest in cybersecurity among youths, attract diverse talents, and nurture the next generation of cyber leaders. As a leading player in the cybersecurity ecosystem, our overarching objective is to make sure we have the talents and skills to scale up our nation’s cyber defence capabilities and ensure the evolving cyber threats do not undermine our digital ambitions,” said Ms Tammie Tham, Co-Chair of the AiSP Advisory Council and CEO, Ensign InfoSecurity