PHD Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence

March 29, 2012


From the time I was introduced to the rudiments of Computer Science, I have excelled in the study of algorithms, programming languages and data processing. Artificial Intelligence (AI), renewed within me my passion for even more advanced, complex problem solving, and provided me with intense analysis, reasoning and deduction. I felt as though I had rediscovered my love of computer science with AI, but more than this, I was in awe of what AI could do and what it will do in the future.

Continuing my pursuit of AI is more than a logical progression for my academic, professional and research experiences; it is the only natural choice given my sensibilities, ambitions, and indeed my dreams. Having spent the last six years as first a teaching assistant, then lecturer and subsequently Head of Quality Unit for the IT department XXX University, I have been inspired to pursue my Ph.D. Earning my Ph.D. in Computer Science will enable me to bring my aspirations to fruition, namely contributing to the future of the only field that has ever brought me the greatest fulfillment, through teaching tomorrow's researchers. As a professor, I will have ample opportunity and access to contemporary research, opportunities that will translate into practical, real world examples I can bring to life for my students.

I bring with me to the Ph.D. Computer Science, AI program a solid academic foundation in Computer Applications and Computer Science, over a decade of conceptual continuity in academic and professional exposure in the field. Moreover, I bring my ability to adapt to new situations. Proof of my ability to adapt can be found in my having been assigned as Head of the Quality Unit in the IT Department immediately after earning my Masters. All of my classes had been conducted in English, despite Arabic being my native language, and even my job after college was an English-speaking workplace. The confidence to make such a successful transition likely stems from my intimate understanding of yet another language, namely Computer Science.

Any future professor must have not only a proven academic track record, but also maturity, leadership ability and be self-reliant. Proof of my success in these areas can be found in my having conducted six senior honors group projects involving the development of application in software engineering, graphics design, C/C++, database and networks. My final year project involved developing a large web-based student monitoring system using PHP and MYSQL to streamline administration, increase parental involvement, and improve student performance by providing a window for parents, teachers and school administrators to interact and communicate with each other.

Research has been a large part of my academic career, both in undergraduate and graduate education. While pursuing my Masters, I conducted five senior projects, in addition to one final project that covered different aspects of database and AI concepts. My first area of research was on client-server applications and HCI, in which I developed two java client applications. This was followed by my research focused on Mobile networks and WAP protocol, during which time I conducted two mobile applications and one WAP site. The last area of research I conducted utilized a XXX Based Stock System. The project itself involved gathering information about stock market indexes and funds from open source sites and then storing them in a multidimensional data warehouse; it was necessary to implement a new algorithm in order to gather and integrate the stock data.

As a future professor, I feel that my international experiences will be a distinct advantage in the classroom. Having been educated, lived, worked and educated in XXX, the US and London, I have a worldview that is quite different from my academic peers, and I am able to interact effectively with many diverse people; combined with this is my ability to speak two languages fluently. As a result, I am able to speak confidently in front of groups of people. A future professor needs to be able to interact effectively with people of differing cultures. This is what I bring to the student body, as well, one in which I anticipate many opportunities for group assignments, teamwork and projects.

Having spent a summer in London pursuing a course in IT quality, I was intrigued by my colleagues praise for and explanations of the Imperial College London. Researching the school further, I was struck by the breadth, autonomy and relevance of the Computer Science, AI curriculum. What is more, Imperial College's world ranking, a top-ten university, is reassuring of a superlative educational experience. I can think of no finer educational institution, more stalwart faculty from which I could ever be privileged to learn from and be guided, nor more accomplished student body to interact with.

The prospect of a quality Computer Science education is incredibly exciting to me. This is my field, where I feel fulfilled and aim to leave my mark in. Thank you for your time and consideration.

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