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Linkping University Selection Committee

Dear Sir,
I am applying to your master program of Statistics and Data Mining starting in September 2014. My

career ambition is to become a doctor researching in the field of data mining. I graduated from high school with mathematics as my major. Based on my high school score I went to Faculty of Engineering, Alexandria University. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Computer and Systems Engineering Department with an average score of 84.4% (GPA 3.62). As my first exposure to statistics and data management, I took two courses; "Probability Theory and Computer Applications" and Statistical Methods for Computers. Then, I took another two courses; "Database Systems" and Special topics in Information Systems. I got high scores in the four courses (3 Excellent and a Very Good). I was impressed by the vast area in which we can use the simple principles of data analysis and data mining in our everyday life. Complementing my strong academic performance are my advanced skills in leadership and communication. During my studies, I was the team leader responsible for building and leading our project team. As the team leader, I was responsible for distributing project assignments and responsibilities as well as governing interpersonal relationships. The projects name was Efhamni which means Understand Me. It was a sign language recognition system using Microsofts Kinect system. The aim was to address problems of communication for the hearing impaired. The graduation project was awarded the second place on a national competition by Egypt Innovate, Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center, TIEC Graduation Project Competition, IBTIECAR 2012. The competition was sponsored by Microsoft ATL at Cairo and many other sponsors. It was a program for general gesture recognition, which is presented and tested with isolated signs of sign language. The framework made use of Kinect, a depth camera developed by Microsoft and PrimeSense, which features easy extraction of important body parts. Recognition was done using Hidden Markov Models (HMM) with a discrete observation probability. The project also offered an easy way of initializing and training new gestures or signs by performing them several times in front of the camera. Results showed a recognition rate of 85% for fourteen signs when they were trained by more than one person. After graduation, I joined the R&D department of the Egyptian Navy, as part of my military service. We worked on developing an algorithm for privacy preservation within data mining systems and hiding of sensitive rules. The project produced nearly no hiding failures and relatively low missescost. During my service in the army and until now, I have been working as a teaching assistant for pattern recognition and computer vision course. The course covers various topics, from pattern

similarity, simple classifiers and their evaluation, to different techniques of clustering and their usage. In addition, I work as a research assistant in Alexandria University. The research is conducted under supervision of Professor Marwan A.Torki and it is funded by Academy of Scientific Research and Technology (ASRT) in Egypt. We are currently working on obstacle detection /avoidance from optical flow. The aim of the research project is to build a framework that helps the visually impaired in movement by detecting different obstacles. I specifically chose this program because I want to pursue my studies after the masters degree for PhD and continue as a doctor researching in this field. Any contribution in this field is a great addition to how we see and analyze data from different sources, how we can get the best out of the data and how we can use the data to predict results. Working in this field will not only enrich the academic society with new techniques, but also can be used in the industry. Linking research to industry is one of my main goals during this program. The applications of data management in industry are infinite. For instance, we can use a Raspberry Pi board and a simple camera to build a smart camera, which can be installed in factories to monitor production lines and to trigger alarms on reaching possible danger thresholds based on given data/statistics. In Egypt, as a developing country, we dont have data management systems in most of the governmental sectors. I had an idea which can be applied in health insurance systems, where we can use a data system to store information about subscribers to the system and make it available to any medical partner using RFIDs (private sector/clinics/ even ambulances). This will make the job of tracking the patients history of allergies for example, very easy. Other fields of usage in industry includes hospitals organization. An artificial intelligence system can be used organize bed schedules, make a staff rotation, provide medical information and estimate number of cases. Going further on my graduation project is another possible track for me. Extending it to include full sentences, and word prediction is a target. I want to participate in this program because of its outstanding educational system and excellent facilities, to focus on gathering relevant work experience. The diverse nature of the program is also a very important point for my application. I have always been interested in being in a diverse environment and I can easily adapt to new ones. During 2010 and 2012, I joined two international programs abroad. In 2010, I participated in Seliger camp in Russia, it had participants from all over the world followed by United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAoC) summer school in Portugal in 2012. During Seliger camp, I met a Swedish woman. She used to tell me about the Swedish history and civilization. She taught me simple Swedish words. I believe that joining this program will help me learn more about the Swedish culture and the Swedish language as I got interested in them. Also, joining international programs helps in building connections from all over the world.

I am confident that I will bring a high level of energy and enthusiasm to your program. I am sure I will exceed your expectations for both my academic and interpersonal skills, which I will use and further develop during this program. I believe my international background and interdisciplinary education will add more diversity to your program. Finally, I have a comment regarding my English proficiency. I supplied a document stating that English was the language of instruction and assessment during my Bachelors study. A month ago, I took TOEFL exam. Scores were out two week ago. I got 109 (28 reading, 30 listening, 23 speaking, 28 writing). If I had chosen to send TOEFL scores to the admission office, it wouldnt have reached it before the deadline. The admission website stated that it is possible to send the university paper only, so I sent it. In case I am admitted, I will provide TOEFL scores immediately to the department. Thank you for considering my application, and I look forward to your acceptance. Sincerely yours, Mohamed Soliman