Junior Fellows

Matej Neumann, 2022 ASEF Junior Fellow, Shared His Reflections at the End of Research Visit in Canada

May 25, 2022

2022 ASEF Junior Fellow from Slovenia Matej Neumann has recently completed his research visit. He worked with ASEF Mentor Dr. Bojan Mohar, Professor of Mathematics at Simon Fraser University, Canada, on spectral graph theory. Matej shared his reflections on the visit:

“My involvement in Bojans research group started even before I first set foot in Canada. I was tasked with reading about a discovery in spectral graph theory and presenting it virtually at the weekly meeting. The main goal of the visit was to improve the results of the new theorem, which proved to be much harder than we first anticipated. During my visit, I learned a lot about spectral graph theory and graph theory in general. I was exposed to research-level mathematics which reaffirmed my love for the subject, my desire to pursue a PhD, and my dreams of becoming a researcher. I was able to build mathematical intuition, which will greatly help me in achieving my dreams.

Throughout my visit, we often had 2 group meetings in addition to the general one, where we discussed the problem, talked about similar previous work done, and thought about what could be done to help us get unstuck. This led to everyone doing their own independent research by reading the literature, discussing it with the other people in the group, and trying to tackle the problem in their own way. My colleagues were very kind and helpful and made me feel welcome.

I spent my free time exploring the university, Vancouver, and the nearby nature. During my time at SFU, I joined the Balkan Students’ Association, where I met a lot of fellow Slovenian students, and the VeggieSFU Club, where I met a lot of amazing people and made some truly great friends. I was also lucky to be allowed to visit two universities in the USA. The first one I visited was Cornell in Ithaca, and the second one was UW-Madison in Madison, which were both unforgettable experiences. 

I had a wonderful experience abroad and am very grateful to Prof. Bojan Mohar and his group for taking me in, ASEF for making all of this possible, and the Public Scholarship, Development, Disability, and Maintenance Fund of the Republic of Slovenia for enabling my stay abroad.”