Security Academy’s sunny study trip in Brussels

Jana Kleščová

Around these days we are finishing our six-month programme Security Academy 2023/2024 and thanks to the Representation of the European Commission in Slovakia we were able to celebrate this third year with a study trip to Brussels. Not only current students but also Security Academy alumni got the opportunity to have a glimpse into the workings of the European Union and its various institutions better.

Our packed programme consisted of discussions with experts on defence and security or related topics such as …

Veronika Musilova, a member of the cabinet of Vera Jourova, Vice-President of the European Commission for Values and Transparency, told us about her cooperation with online platforms in the preparation of social networking regulation. Monika Lazar from the Directorate-General for European Civil Protection & Humanitarian Aid Operations (DG ECHO), in addition to giving us a tour of the ERCC operations centre, introduced us to the EU’s civil protection mechanisms and the Emergency Response Coordination Centre.

Ms. Danica Page Murancanova gave us an overview of the basic functioning of the EU Council, its timetable and competencies. We learned interesting facts about the background of the negotiations and the particular approach of the Slovak representatives.  Mrs Murancanova’s presentation was followed by a discussion with the Slovak Ambassador Michal Komada and Katari­na Jurisova. Michal Komada is Slovakia’s representative on the Political and Security Committee of the Permanent Representation of Slovakia to the EU and Katari­na Jurisova is a defence advisor focusing on the EU defence industry.

During a quick tour of the European Parliament, we were taken care of by Ms. Alena Carna who accompanied us in the Parliament and educated us about the basics of the European Community, which up until today is probably the largest economic and social union in the world.

“Probably the most positive thing is the openness of the speakers, you don’t meet people like that every day, which makes you appreciate it all even more.”

Veronika A.

In Slovakia, we often have no idea what high-quality and high-profile people we have sent to represent Slovakia in Brussels. One of them is the EU’s Lead Spokesperson for foreign affairs and security policy, Peter Stano, thanks to whom we learned more about the communication between the EEAS and the European Commission and got a glimpse into the cabinet of the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy himself, Josep Borrell.

The study tour brought together 25 current and past students of the Academy, creating a unique space for professional and friendly networking within the community that Adapt Institute has long sought to build and foster.

,,I believe that the element of networking in the defence and security, or foreign-oriented community is the most important for increasing professionalism in the field and thus indirectly improving the potential defence capability of the Slovak Republic.

Juraj B.

We thank all participants for their active participation, great reviews and the European Commission Representation for inviting Adapt Security Academy to Brussels.

,,The study trip to Brussels had a huge benefit for a better understanding of security issues at the level of the European Union. The opportunity to discuss with experts who work on diverse projects on a daily basis and to see the inner workings of the institutions has broadened my horizons considerably and given me a different perspective on the overall running of the Union. Moreover, the educational experience was complemented by many stimulating discussions with the participants and the organisers of the trip, which also added to the overall positive atmosphere of the whole trip. Such activities have the potential to bring the often distant European processes closer to students in an understandable way and at the same time create a space for building an active security community in Slovakia.

Lucia K.

Photo credit: Jana Kleščová

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