Amy Wiebe receives Dean's Convocation Medal

June 09, 2014

When she was just an undergraduate student, one of Amy Wiebe’s papers was published in the top journal in Combinatorics — a rare and special accomplishment, and one that foreshadowed many great accomplishments to come. She has since completed her master’s in Mathematics with a perfect A+ average and received a number of major awards to support her graduate work.

Dr. Jonathan Jedwab, her supervisor, says, "The problem of constructing large sets of lines with few angles between the pairs of lines has baffled mathematicians for more than 65 years. The study has also attracted intense interest from physicists in the last 15 years, following the recognition that these sets of complex equiangular lines correspond precisely to an ideal measurement in quantum physics known as 'symmetric informationally complete positive operator-valued measure'."

For her master's thesis, she took on this mathematical puzzle and came up with a simplified matrix that offers a possible approach to the construction of the solution. Ms. Wiebe is about to submit two papers that are expected to overturn conventional wisdom. Dr. Jedwab says that this is an accomplishment that would be a career highlight for any professional researcher, let alone a master’s student. Amy will be starting her PhD research at the University of Washington this fall.

Amy says, "I have been lucky to have the opportunity to take part in several interesting research projects in my time at SFU, the most fascinating and exciting of which being the problem of complex equiangular lines that I undertook for my thesis. I am thankful for the support and mentorship of my supervisor, Dr. Jonathan Jedwab; I have learned many important skills from working with him, and I look forward to collaborating with him again in the future. I also look forward to applying these skills to new problems with new colleagues during my upcoming doctoral studies!"

On behalf of SFU, we congratulate Ms. Amy Wiebe on her outstanding achievements which are being recognized with the award of the Dean of Graduate Studies Convocation Medal as one of SFU's most outstanding graduate students from the Faculty of Science.

See also: All 2014 Convocation Award Winners

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