Mustafa Elnainay is first graduate of VT-MENA Ph.D. program in ECE | ECE | Virginia Tech


Mustafa Elnainay is first graduate of VT-MENA Ph.D. program in ECE

Photograph of Mustafa Elnainay

Mustafa Elnainay is the first Ph.D. graduate in ECE from the VT-MENA program.

Mustafa Elnainay has earned the first Ph.D. in ECE from the VT-MENA program — Virginia Tech's cooperative program for students in the Middle East and North Africa.

His dissertation is titled “Island Genetic Algorithm-based Cognitive Networks.” His advisors were ECE's Allen MacKenzie and Nazih Eldrini of Alexandria University in Egypt.

Elnainy earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer science from Alexandria University and has accepted a faculty position there. The Arab Academy for Science and Technology (AAST) sponsored his studies with VT-MENA since 2005.

VT-MENA is a cooperative effort between Virginia Tech and the AAST through which students can earn advanced degrees from Virginia Tech in electrical and computer engineering and computer science. Program requirements are identical to those at the Blacksburg campus and are taught by Virginia Tech faculty members.

Elnainay's defense was particularly interesting, according to Sedki Riad, director of VT-MENA, because it involved faculty members from five different sites on four continents. Committee members joined the virtual defense from India, Africa, Ireland, and Virginia.

The program currently has about 30 Ph.D. students. For more information, visit the VT-MENA website.