MOS Champion Prepares for a Career in Network and Security Engineering

Japan has a rich cultural history, along with a rich history of technology and innovation. Living in a country like that can make it hard to stand out. Many students across Japan are using certification to help improve their skills, and to make the resumes stand out. Competing in the Microsoft Office World Championship is just bonus.

Find out how 2018 MOS World Championship silver medalist Masato Ohno is planning to use his experience at the MOS World Championship to springboard his success to a career in network and security engineering.

Certiport: Masato, thank you so much for sitting down to chat with us.

Masato: It’s my pleasure. I had such a great experience at the MOS World Championship, and I’m happy to talk more about it.

Certiport: So great to hear. Let’s back up a little bit. Tell us about yourself.

Masato: Currently I’m a student at Funabashi Joho-Bijinesu College of Technology. I’m in my second year, studying in the IT Engineering department. In my spare time, I like to hang out with my pet parakeet. I also enjoy going to karaoke or travelling with my friends. Recently I have been interested in learning server technologies using cloud servers. It is fun to try to come up with an idea of Web services that can make our lives more convenient.

Certiport: That’s amazing. Have you always been interested in Technology?

Masato: I have been for several years. I became interested in computers when I was in high school.

Certiport: Was that the same time you got involved in Microsoft Office Specialist certifications?

Masato: Not exactly, that started more after I entered my college. After entering Funabashi Joho, I needed to use Excel frequently for class work. At first, however, I was not even familiar with basic features such as functions and tables, and I used to spend a lot of time creating a simple chart. Then a MOS preparation course started at school, so I decided to study hard and get the most out of the course. That is how I got involved in MOS.

Certiport: How amazing that you started from square one and now you’ve earned the silver medal at the MOS World Championship. What certifications do you have?

Masato: I’ve earned my MOS Excel 2016, MOS Excel 2013, MOS Excel 2016 Expert, and CCENT certifications.

2018 MOS World Championship silver medalist Masato Ohno in Universal Studios

Certiport: You’re not only a MOS Excel Champion, you’re a MOS Excel expert. Do you feel like it’s been beneficial for you as a student?

Masato: Absolutely! I am more skilled in Excel after becoming certified. Now I can complete tasks using Excel much faster than before, and it has been very useful at school and my part-time job when I need to create documents.

Certainly, there will be a lot of opportunities to use Excel (and other Office applications) when I graduate and start working for a company. I plan to continue building up my skills.

Certiport: It sounds like you’ve used Excel at school and work. What opportunities have opened to you because of your certification?

Masato: My biggest opportunity was the MOS World Championship, which was such invaluable and inspiring experience for me.

Before the MOS World Championship, all I could imagine for my future was to stay and work in my own country, but now I have a much bigger vision and am interested in pursuing opportunities in global arena.

Remembering what I’ve learned from the event, I am encouraged to challenge myself more aggressively to earn other certifications and tackle other areas that I used to feel hesitant about.

Certiport: Your confidence is well deserved. You obviously have the skills to succeed! What were you thinking when you heard your name announced as the silver medalist in Excel 2016?

Masato: I was surprised when I heard my name. But as I heard the big applause and cheering from other students, I felt joy welling up. It was the happiest moment in my life – probably 150% happier than any other delightful event in the past. All my family, friends and teachers at school were so happy for me!

Certiport: It’s moments like that that make the MOS World Championship so special. What other moment was your favorite?

Masato: Aside from winning the second place in Excel 2016, my best memory from the competition is that I met a lot of friends from around the world for the first time in my life. It was my first time travelling abroad. There were a lot of happy events as well as some confusing instances in an unfamiliar environment, but I cherish every single moment I’ve experienced during the whole event.

Certiport: We’re glad you’re walking away with such happy memories. We’ve talked a bit about your past. Now let’s talk about your future. What are your plans for after you graduate from college?

Masato: I would like to become a network and security engineer. To achieve the goal, I am now studying to prepare for a networking certification. I also want to enhance my Excel skills more because they are indispensable once you start working. English was not my best subject, but I will study it harder so that I can be successful on a global stage.

Certiport: We can’t wait to see where your hard work takes you. Anything else you want to share with the students around the world or team at Certiport?

Masato: I would like to thank all Certiport staff for hosting such a wonderful event. There were many new experiences for me during the event. The whole trip will be an asset for my future. If there are students around the world considering competing, I think they should go for it!

Interested in learning more about the MOS World Championship? Learn more at