Let's talk about what he can do with this tank. It could make a very nice little zoa tank with a few shrimp even. It could house a single small fish as well. For example:
Melev's Reef - 2 gallon Pico tank
It is very true that a small tank takes a lot more effort to manage, but it is not impossible.
Oliver, I would look for a compact fluorescent fixture that packs as much light in it's housing as you can find. I have no experience with fixtures of that size, but I know that coralife makes a 13" fixture that has two 13w lamps. A little aragonite sand and a hob
filter (which you may have already) and you are ready to go.
Do your research for hardy corals. I have had pretty good luck with Zoanthids. They are hearty and grow pretty fast. Take a look at some of the pics here: Zoanthids, Palys
If it were me, I would start slow and see where it goes. No fish to start. Just a couple polyps, and get things under control. Get used to the water changes and the new world of sw
chemistry. Before long you will be pining for that 300 gallon tank!