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MAEG student ventures on an expedition through the Azores aboard a whaling boat

Manuel Vinhas Roque , who has just finished the first year of his MAEG degree and was recently part of a crew that went on an expedition to the central islands of the Azores in a whaling boat. 

We challenged our student to answer three questions, and this is what our sailor had to say: 

How did yiur participation come about?
I have been spending my summers on Pico Island in the Azores virtually since I was born. Last summer I met Mr. Estácio Azevedo, a picaroto (a native of I Pico), who soon became a great friend. It was at the invitation of this friend that I joined one of the whaling teams of the Clube Naval de São Roque do Pico. This summer I was invited to participate in a trip that had been thought of for more than 18 years, but had never come to pass - a tour of the Central Group of islands in a whaling boat, docking at former whaling ports on all five islands of the group. The trip is conducted using the boat's original equipment, mainly the sail and occasionally the oars, the same ones that the whalers had in days bygone.

What does this adventure represent in your life?
As a fan of both the Azores and water sports ,this adventure is really exciting for me. The historical background brought this experience of being at sea to life, as did the teamwork required to sail the boat, culminated in a trip that will always remain a great reminder of the good times spent in the Azores.

During the trip we had several encounters with various species of dolphins that entertained us with their acrobatics, however the most memorable encounter was with a group of sperm whales! Sailing in a whaling boat on a route of old whaling ports around the islands becomes special when you actually come across a "whale".

We made an old-fashioned approach, with quick but silent manoeuvres, where everyone focused their attention on the sperm whales that appeared as they came up for air. For a moment we felt like real whalers!

How has your experience been at ISEG? Do you think you are an explorer who likes maths, or a mathematician who likes to explore?
I am really enjoying ISEG, for ever since I joined ISEG there have been countless activities and opportunities for personal development. It really is a school of opportunities. I was quickly integrated into the daily life of ISEG and have made many friends!

I think I am more of an explorer who likes mathematics, as I have always loved mathematics and I am passionate about nautical sports, especially sailing, I have always been curious to apply mathematical knowledge to maritime navigation and I am also interested in natural sciences, which provide us with a better understanding when we are in contact with nature.
The MAEG course thus introduced me to a new area in my field of interests, namely Economics and Management, both of which are key to understanding the world today.