My Military Masters
Information Warfare/Competitive Intelligence
In July 2008 I was at the supermarket working and a couple suggested
Masters at the Military Academy. I went to the official site and was amazed
because it seemed to fit me perfectly.
I said to myself that one year
later I would apply for it, which I did. And, I was accepted in 2009 just like I
who at the time was the head of that Masters,
once told me: "Men aren't measured by their size but by their inner greatness".
I will never forget these words.
issue with the Masters was that civilians had to pay 100% the tuitions, while
the military had 50% discount.
Things there were also though since some
military were treating me badly, just like a huge Lieutenant Colonel in the bar
who would raise me up in the air and shake me making my back hurt.
There was also a ranger guy who would slap my back saying
"Hello little Marco"
and I would hit the floor hurt.
There were also teachers who
were very severe in evaluation giving bad marks to persons.
In the second
year of the course we needed a dissertation project and a supervisor. I tried to find a
supervisor at the Academy but they all said they had too many students or that cyberterrorism wasn't their speciality. I even tried the Professor who gave my
worst mark and no success.
After lots of failures, the Academy suggested
Professor Carvalho Rodrigues of NATO and gave me his contact. At that point I didn't
know who he was and started sending him e-mails and SMSs. I was extremely
lucky because he accepted being my supervisor.
Due to the fact that if we
had an outside supervisor, the rules said we also needed an internal one. I
tried Professor Fernandes Thomaz and he accepted. I was so lucky, because time
proved that the two were the best supervisors one could have.
I delivered my
6.Oct.2011 but the Scientific Commission took around a year to constitute a Jury, so I had time to
improve and make a new version of the dissertation which I was able to deliver on
replace the first one. The new one was larger and
a lot better by improving the grammar and better explanations of the concepts
On 27.Sep.2012 I went to the
Military Academy HQ for the defence. I had invited around 30
persons but only a few showed up. The audience was mainly military.
evaluation event took place at 11:30am and lasted for around 1H30. I had 20
minutes to present the PowerPoint and, the remaining time, was for the arguer to
After the presentation, I sat down and the arguer started
asking questions. I was very lucky because I knew all the answers and even gave
real life examples to what he asked. For example, he asked about the relationship
between the theory of Fisher and Shannon and I gave a real life example based on
a situation that happened to me at the supermarket years ago.
the questions were over, everyone left the room and the Jury gathered
to deliberate. Then, we entered again and the Jury President said
I had "Excellent" as a final mark: 18 values.
I was the first civilian
to finish the course, and 18 values was one of the highest marks ever
given by the Military Academy which means that I, a mere cashier, was able to
achieve something spectacular. I knew about a couple of military dissertation defences
in the past and not even they accomplished such.
7.Nov.2012 I received a reward from Santander
Totta for my course final mark: €1'000. I was the only
civilian to receive a prize at the Opening Ceremony for the school year