Afgelopen jaar hebben we een succesvol Nederlands kampioenschap georganiseerd voor zowel Office als voor Adobe. En de winnaars? Die mochten met mij mee naar het wereldkampioenschap in Disneyland, Los Angeles. Eind juli was het eindelijk zover en ging ik samen met alle winnaars naar Los Angeles. Daniel deelt graag zijn verhaal met jullie.
Dreams do come true. I never thought that as a first-year student following the International Business and Management Studies (IBMS) program at The Hague University of Applied Sciences I would represent the Netherlands on the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) World Championship in Disneyland, Anaheim California. But to remind you that dreams do indeed come true, I have always had the dream of visiting the United States and of becoming a champion in something; which indeed came true.
I think many people around me will say that I am goal oriented. Since I began IBMS I was very keen to excel in my studies and my student career.
After completing all my exams in TP-2, I decided to sign up for the MOS certificate exams that were timetabled for January. The week before the test I spent an hour practicing every night. In the end, the practice turned out to be more effective than I’d thought it would be as I have scored 1000 points for both the Microsoft Word and Excel certificate exams.
One interesting thing that I noticed during the test was a little pop-up screen that appeared. It said the following: “by clicking on this box you agree to entering your exam grade into the global database for students to participate in the Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship qualifiers”. As you can imagine this grabbed my attention. Immediately after I got home from the exam I looked up what this whole “MOS World championship” thing was.
A couple of months passed by and I was invited to the Dutch Qualifiers. My teacher, Ms. Moore was also very excited to see what the event will be like. But then a pretty serious problem arose: TP-4. To elaborate, the Dutch qualifying round would have taken place on the 1st of June and unfortunately, I have also had my statistics exam timetabled on the same day. Luckily, the exam board granted me a special permission to do the exam slightly earlier, finishing when the others would start. Then the day came for the Dutch qualifiers.
After a brief introduction from the organizers we were immediately directed to the testing room. The test went relatively well for me and I was quite confident about my result. Then, the moment of announcing the winners came. As you can imagine I was very excited and very curious to hear who will win. Then came my category. They announced the third place, then the second place, and then finally came the time for announcing the winner. I was feeling calm (I was even thinking why my heart wasn’t beating 200 per minute). And then… the announcer said “Will he understand it if I say it in Dutch” (as Ms. Moore told me afterwards) because I just heard Daniel Djerdji. The next thing that I remember was me hugging Ms. Moore and jumping with her, after which I ran for the trophy. Then, we were invited to the back room with Ms. Moore and the other racer, Vera Zandvliet, who won in the MBO category. We were told more about what we can expect in the U.S.A and on the World Cup. Well, first things first “You are going to DISNEYLAND”!
It was July the 28th, a Friday morning. I was getting onto the train at Station Holland Spoor in The Hague. At the next stop, I met with my ‘chaperone’, Mr. Vreeke, as Ms. Moore was on her family vacation. After arriving at Schiphol, we met with the rest of the Dutch team. There, I also met with the final contender: Boris Lammertse, who was going to race in the Adobe championship that was simultaneously organized with the MOS championship. Once everyone arrived, we went through the airport security and passport control. After drinking a coffee and roaming around the airport, we headed on to gate F5 to board the KLM 747. Interestingly, it was the first time for all three of us visiting the United States. 11 Hours later we landed on Los Angeles International Airport. Once we arrived in Disneyland hotel we were surprised to learn that we would each have our own room. We spent the remaining day acclimatizing, after all we were in a minus 9-hour time difference. The next day we spent in Los Angeles itself.
Sunday was the opening of the Microsoft Office Specialist as well as the Adobe Certified Associate’s World Championship. During the day, we registered with the organizers; there, we also received some shirts and our own personal badge, along with some other gifts from Certiport. Besides this, there was an evening welcome reception in garden of the Disneyland hotel where drinks and snacks (doughnuts) were served. During the welcome reception we also got to meet the other contenders. A nice memory that I have from the garden party was from a Japanese girl, who was giving out original Japanese paper fans to the other racers including me and Mr. Vreeke.
Monday = test day. Many high-ranking executives from Microsoft, Adobe, Certiport and Pearson VUE gave welcome speeches after a spectacular show from Le PeTiT CiRqUe, an art dance group. Then came the big moment. As my name begins with the letter ‘D’, I was placed among the first group of exam takers. They explained us what to do and we began the test.
The next morning we had a guest speaker giving a very long motivational presentation. The guest speaker was none other than Devon Harris: a three time Olympian on the Jamaican Winter Olympic Bobsled team. Following his interesting motivational speech and story came the highlight of the day, and I would say the highlight of the entire trip: DISNEYLAND itself. Starting off in Downtown Disney, we were making our way towards Disneyland through an area where everything had Mickey Mouse in it somewhere. Once passing the main gates, we arrived on Main Street U.S.A. I could best describe it as an extravagant and fancy version of the wild west, with a big blue castle, the Disney castle of course, on the end of the street. Making our way through the crowd, we tuned right towards ‘Tomorrowland’. There, we queued up in line for our Space Mountain roller coaster ride. An hour later I had my first ever ride in a roller coaster, and of course we got stuck in the tunnel making the experience even more unique. At 9 p.m. the big show began: the fireworks. It was the most amazingly choreographed fireworks that I have seen in my life up until then and I will not forget it easily. With all the experiences that I gained there, Disneyland stood up to its name as “the happiest place on earth”.
A new dawn came, and with that the last day of our American adventure. It was Wednesday, the day of the award ceremony and our departure home. Every contender got the opportunity to go up to the main stage and to say who he or she is and where he or she came from. In the end, no one from the Dutch team made it into the top 10. We headed off to the airport slightly sad, after all we all messed up our exams. Nevertheless, on the KLM flight back to Amsterdam we reflected on all the experiences that we gained in the United States and the sadness was quickly replaced with joy, happiness and pride. We gained something more precious than gifts: a lifetime’s worth of experiences that we shall never forget, and this is the most important!
Every IBMS student has the opportunity to obtain a MOS certificate from Certiport in Microsoft Word as well as Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint. The Word and Excel certificate exams run throughout the year. The certificate exams are a component of the Microsoft Office Skills course that students get to do in their first semester at IBMS. But how does one get to participate in the MOS World Championship? Each certificate exam is marked out of 1000 points. To make things clear, Certiport is the organization responsible for making as well as marking the exams, next to organizing the MOS World Championship; Microsoft only provides the platform that the student gets tested on i.e. Microsoft Office. In order to gain Certiport’s attention it is necessary to obtain a very high score on one’s certificate exam, e.g. a score between 950-1000 points. Then, in May Certiport releases the results that students achieved all around the globe. After this, each organizer in the country where the candidates took the exam (slim.nl and slbdiensten.nl for The Netherlands) send out a list with the top students to the various educational institutions. Then, the top students of the various educational institutions are invited to compete for the Dutch Champion title. There are two winning spots on the Dutch Championship (NK Office): one winner from HBO/WO and one from VO/MBO.
Give it all you’ve got!
Meedoen aan het NK Office 2018? Dat kan! Neem contact met mij per e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org of bel 020-4201396.