Stephen Melczer, MSc (‘14), Postdoctoral Fellow, the University of Pennsylvania

A strong network from SFU let Melczer indulge his love of travel and adventure while pursuing his PhD.

Stephen Melczer completed both his BSc and MSc in the Mathematics Department at SFU. During his Bachelor’s degree, he secured three undergraduate student research awards allowing him to pursue research in different areas of math. This experience ultimately informed his Master’s work in combinatorics under the supervision of Professor Marni Mishna.

After finishing at SFU, Melczer continued on to a joint PhD in Ontario and France. “I made a lot of contacts at SFU,” he says. “My supervisor knew a lot of people, especially in Europe, and that eventually led to me doing half my PhD in France.” Every summer while at SFU, Melczer travelled to conferences to present his research. “Getting to travel a lot was a highlight. I’d never even been on a plane before I started attending conferences. I was able to travel all over Canada and I spent a year in Paris during my undergraduate and graduate degrees.”

Melczer is now a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Pennsylvania. “Some of my work continues what I started in my Master’s at SFU. Part of my focus is getting computers to do mathematics and seeing how they can be used to give mathematical proofs of different things,” he says. In addition to research, Melczer will be teaching undergraduate and graduate courses.