Alumni Focus: Faisal Nawab

KAUST alumnus Faisal Nawab (M.S. '11) is currently an assistant professor of computer science and engineering at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Image courtesy of Faisal Nawab.

By Abdullah Alhamdan, KAUST News

KAUST alumnus Faisal Nawab received his master's degree in computer science from the University in 2011. His M.S. thesis work, which focused on how to build wireless network infrastructure, was supervised by KAUST Associate Professor Basem Shihada.

Nawab currently works as an assistant professor of computer science and engineering in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he works on developing‏ systems for quick and accurate data analysis of new applications in cloud computing and Big Data.

"I work with my research team at [UC Santa Cruz] to develop a new type of data analysis system that will enable rapid data analysis through algorithms that involve both cloud computing and personal computers," Nawab said. "Our future goal is to build a knowledge database to solve this problem and—at the same time—develop real systems to enable future data analysis."

Alumnus Faisal Nawab (M.S. '11) is a member of the University's founding class of students. The founding class is pictured here on campus on September 5, 2009, the first day of classes after the University opened in 2009. File photo.

"I joined KAUST as a founding student in 2009 after receiving my bachelor's degree in computer engineering from [King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals]," he continued. "Despite being a newly established university at the time, KAUST was an advanced scientific institution with an inspiring mission and vision and strong leadership with high-caliber faculty and staff."

"The two years I spent at KAUST for my master's degree had a great impact on my personal and academic life," Nawab added. "The University aims to produce leaders in different scientific fields to change the world for the better—not only academically but also by developing students' skills through participation in enrichment activities designed for this goal."

Nawab advised current KAUST students to take advantage of every opportunity available to them on campus and to enrich their experience academically and socially.

"The University has some of the best academics and professionals in Saudi Arabia and the world," he noted. "Learning from them will motivate students to succeed in life."

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