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Sample Statement of Purpose for Graduate School in Computer Science, Hardware Engineer, Security

I think the strongest aspect of my application to your distinguished Master’s Program in Computer Science at XXXX University is the fact that I not only grew up playing video games but hacking them as well. I loved the challenge and learned a great deal about computer and network security in the process. I have lived most of my 22 years learning about everything having to do with computers, networks, and especially security engineering; and I have read avidly in these areas for a long time, usually way into the night. Analyzing networks and helping to make them safe from attack is my professional calling. Now, I am the good guy with the white hat – or at least a gray hat. In fact, I joined the Georgia Tech Gray Hat Club last year. A computer/network security club, we meet every week to discuss a given security topic.

My central professional goal is to become a senior security engineer in a leading company on the cutting edge of computer and communication development. I appreciate the fact that computer and network security specialists are increasingly in demand and I aspire to join their elite ranks, working for the public good. Computer Science at Johns Hopkins University is my first choice for graduate school for a variety of reasons including your location. Only a handful of top colleges offer a Master’s Program specifically focused on Information Security and Johns Hopkins is one of them. Johns Hopkins also offers a vast array of research as well as teaching opportunities and I have a solid background in information and networking. I am certain that I could excel at XXXX.

I was especially proud as an undergraduate student, of my completion over the course of 2 months of a project called Design and Implementation of a Reliable Transport Protocol. This project required the use of a single UDP socket in support of the TCP function of transferring packets (files) over the network. Implementing TCP (reliable protocol) function on top of UDP was no easy task. I faced up to difficult challenges such as bad network conditions resulting in packet loss, corrupted packets, and reorder packets. I also had to design and implement controls for flow and congestion. By using a multi-threading programming methodology, this project was able to supported multiple clients. I managed to finish the project by myself and got 110 out of 100 points including10 extra credit points for implementing additional feature functions. This and similar projects have me geared up to hit the ground running at Johns Hopkins and distinguish myself as a rapid learner and a very hard working student who never gives up no matter how difficult the challenge that I face.

In my senior year, I took a Computer security class with 10 labs related to computer/ network security. These labs helped me to better understand a variety of important security issues. In our Man in Middle Attack Lab, for example, we set up two virtual machines running kail linux systems, two virtual machines, A and B, try to communicate with each other and the original system is the attacker. The attack is able to interrupt the communication between A and B; the kail linux system can get the message sent from A to B and it also has the ability to modify the message. I have also learned a lot about the security of operating systems and networks as member of the Grey Hat Club, how to hack certain operating systems, social engineering initiatives, and all concept about SQL injection, different Cryptography, and recent developments concerning passwords to name a few. I go to every meeting and have met a lot of people who are very knowledgeable in the area of security. I have completed two internships as a hardware engineer for a company called Echostar. My work with this company has mostly involved designing a variety of methods to test company equipment and detect potential problems as well as filing reports to my manager. I have consistently shown an ability to solve complex problems. In fact, during my internship at the co-op, every time my manager asked me to complete a new task, I always managed to work through it, even when I initially possessed little or no prior understanding of what it entailed. My passion to understand this field with greater depth, breadth, and nuance is unbounded. I thank you for considering my application to your distinguished Master’s Degree Program in Computer Science at XXXX.

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