Alumni Focus: Manal Kalkatawi

KAUST alumna Manal Kalkatawi (Ph.D. '17) calls the time she spent at KAUST 'one of the most beautiful periods of [her] life.' She is pictured here receiving her Ph.D. on campus in December 2017. File photo.

Manal Kalkatawi graduated from KAUST in 2017 with a Ph.D. in computer science with a focus on bioinformatics. She is currently an assistant professor at the Faculty of Computing and Information Technology at King Abdulaziz University (KAU) in Jeddah. Kalkatawi also pursues research in her field of specialization through cooperation with different research organizations, and she supervises master's degree theses of KAU students.

Achieving a dream

"I love science, and I'm also a daughter, wife and mother," Kalkatawi said. "I've faced so many challenges at the scientific and social levels, but getting my doctorate and doing research was a dream I wanted to achieve. It's a dream I didn't want to give up."

Kalkatawi's academic journey began when she obtained a first-class honors bachelor's degree from KAU in 2008. This led to her college nominating her for a KAUST master's degree scholarship.

"I started my master's degree at KAUST in 2009, and immediately after graduating, my supervisor presented me with the idea of completing my Ph.D. studies under his supervision," she said. "It was an opportunity I had to seize. Thankfully it was a good decision and a successful step forward."

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