Doctoral student manages family life and academics

Rasha Almughrabi is raising four children while completing her dissertation

| Author: Hadlee Rinn | Media Contact: Kara Owens

Rasha Almughrabi, a doctoral student studying Mathematics, juggled family life, writing a dissertation on complex numbers, and a teaching graduate assistantship. On her academic journey, she says, “I [was] excited about the opportunity to attend CMU because I truly believe they offer strong and accredited majors in mathematics, statistics, and data analytics. I am also most interested in the teaching internship opportunities CMU offers to students.” 

In her dissertation, Almughrabi deals with the calculation of functions known as Bergman kernels. These functions are key in complex analysis, such as calculus with complex numbers. Almughrabi says, “The complex numbers are a system of generalized numbers providing greater flexibility [in algebra], such as allowing for the extraction of square roots of negative quantities.” 

While completing her dissertation, Almughrabi has been responsible for her four children, with her husband working in West Virginia. She attributes some of her success to staying on top of assignments and managing her time. Almughrabi says, “I like to talk to my kids and discuss the importance of study, and gaining support from them is always pushing me towards achieving my goals.”  

Graduate coordinator, Professor Meera Mainkar, says, “Rasha juggled three balls while at CMU, she worked hard on her Ph.D. dissertation on the challenging topic of Several Complex Variables, she was an excellent teaching assistant, and she also took care of her family including her four lovely kids. It was amazing how Rasha aced the Algebra Qualifying examination, a requirement for the mathematics Ph.D., one week after she delivered her youngest daughter. Rasha's journey is truly inspiring.” 

This story is brought to you by the Office of Research and Graduate Studies.

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