A teenager who ran away from school, bullied his classmates and lied to his teachers and parents has been named South China Morning Post Most Improved Student of the Year. Chan Wai-kit, a Form Seven student at FDBWA Szeto Ho Secondary School, said his Form Three class mistress had nominated him for the award. 'Ms Li later told me that she had once thought I was a nasty student,' he said. The 19-year-old was awarded a $20,000 scholarship and courses in art and information technology. Another seventh former, Ko Lai-kin from Sir Ellis Kadoorie Secondary School (Sha Tin), was runner-up. He won the KMB scholarship of $5,000. The two were chosen from more than 90 candidates. Wai-kit admitted to 'feeling weird' after being told of his award. 'I was used to being punished and never had anything like an award, not to mention a scholarship,' he said. The experience of repeating Form Five in an evening school brought a tremendous change to his life. 'The age of my classmates there ranged from my age to older than 50. One of them attended class before working in a mahjong parlour. 'As a child he did not have the opportunity to study. He said that just sitting for the HKCEE, even if he did not pass, would make him happy. 'It struck me that I had wasted more than 10 years,' Wai-kit said. He returned to school after passing the HKCEE, was one of the top three Form Six students and served as chairman of the Community Youth Club as well as welfare secretary of the students' union. He hopes to be a social worker. 'Many delinquent teenagers are basically good. They just need a little extra care and help to get back on track,' he said. One of the two judges - artistic director of theatre group Zuni Icosahedron Danny Yung Ning-tsun - was impressed how Wai-kit had changed. 'He drew intelligent conclusions from his experience,' Yung said. Lai-kin also scored highly for his self-assessment. 'The most important element of improvement is self-awareness,' said Yung. 'It brings about a self-criticism that leads to change.' The awards were also a recognition of the teachers, parents and friends, whose support was so important to the students, he said.