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"... (ACO), I knew I had found a program that fit my interests ideally. Although I considered myself primarily a mathematician, my interests ranged over a variety of topics that are not necessarily found in every mathematics department, such as the foundations of computer science, operations research, al ..."

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(ACO), I knew I had found a program that fit my interests ideally. Although I considered myself primarily a mathematician, my interests ranged over a variety of topics that are not necessarily found in every mathematics department, such as the foundations of computer science, operations research, algorithm design, etc. The ACO program seemed tailor-made for my interests, focusing on the interface and interplay between mathematics, computer science, and operations research. As a result of being in the ACO program I have had the opportunity to work with a variety of people in a variety of fields at Georgia Tech. The interdisciplinary nature of the ACO program is reflected in the nature of my current research projects. Over the next few years I see this multidisciplinary focus continuing, as I see myself continuing my current research in mathematical modeling, combinatorial structures, especially partially ordered sets, and complex networks. 1. Mathematical Modeling Throughout my undergraduate career the application of mathematics, especially discrete mathematics, to the solving of real world problems fascinated me. In every year of my four year career at Rose-Hulman, I competed in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling. Although the teams I was on never produced one of the few winning papers, we performed well each year, receiving three