B.Sc., PhD

Instructor, Mathematics & Statistics
School of STEM
Mathematics & Statistics
Faculty of Arts and Sciences

604.986.1911 ext. 2483
Fir Building, room FR482


Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Combinatorics and Optimization, Faculty of Mathematics, University of Waterloo, 1996.

PhD (Mathematics), University of Pennsylvania, 1993.

B.Sc. (Mathematics and Statistics), Simon Fraser University, 1989.

"I believe that mathematics is a beautiful human endeavour to be enjoyed by all at any level."


Lily Yen (PhD, University of Pennsylvania, 1993) is a mathematics educator and researcher. She first focused on computer algebra and algorithmic proof theory with Herbert S. Wilf, then algebraic combinatorics with David M. Jackson. After the birth of her first child, she took a twelve-year break from research and started a tutoring business with her husband. In September of 2000, she returned to teaching as part-time faculty at Capilano University.

Since 2008, Yen has returned to research and expanded her focus to other fields of mathematics.

In addition to teaching and research, Yen is an organist and choir conductor at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Coquitlam. She loves singing and making chamber music with her husband and children.

Nothing is more rewarding to me than watching a student's eyes shine with understanding when a difficult concept suddenly becomes clear. I treasure the privilege to share my passion for mathematics and guide young people early in their university career. I hope my students not only become confident in mathematical skills but also gain insight into the power of mathematics.

For my PhD and postdoctoral fellowship, I focused on algorithmic proof theory using computer algebra and algebraic combinatorics. After returning to research in 2008, I studied RNA folding structure, bases for quantum computer, and coding for digital communication.

I would like to apply mathematics to neurosciences next.

Jonathan Jedwab and Lily Yen. Costas cubes. IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, 64(3):31443149, April 2018.

Sophie Burrill, Sergi Elizalde, Marni Mishna, and Lily Yen. A generating tree approach to k-nonnesting partitions and permutations. Annals of Combinatorics, pages 133, June 2016.

Jonathan Jedwab and Lily Yen. An infinite family of strongly unextendible mutually unbiased bases in C2^2h. Preprint, April 2016.

Lily Yen. Crossings and nestings for arc-coloured permutations and automation. The Electronic Journal of Combinatorics, 22(1):#P1.14, 2015.

Manuel Kauers and Lily Yen. On the length of integers in telescopers for proper hypergeometric terms. Journal of Symbolic Computation, 66:2133, 2015.

Marni Mishna and Lily Yen. Set partitions with no m-nesting. In Ilias S. Kotsireas and Eugene V. Zima, editors, Advances in Combinatorics, pages 249258. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, 2013.

Lily Yen. A combinatorial proof for Stockhausen's problem. SIAM Journal on Discrete Mathematics, 10(3):499504, August 1997.

Ronald C. Read and Lily Yen. A note on the Stockhausen problem. Journal of Combinatorial Theory, Series A, 76(1):110, October 1996.

Ira Gessel, Wayne Goddard, Walter Shur, Herbert S. Wilf, and Lily Yen. Counting pairs of lattice paths by intersections. Journal of Combinatorial Theory, Series A, 74(2):173187, May 1996.

Lily Yen. A two-line algorithm for proving q-hypergeometric identities. Journal of Mathematical Analysis and Applications, 213(1):114, 1997.

Lily Yen. A symmetric functions approach to Stockhausen's problem. The Electronic Journal of Combinatorics, 3(R7):2, 1996.

Lily Yen. A two-line algorithm for proving terminating hypergeometric identities. Journal of Mathematical Analysis and Applications, 198(3):856878, 1996.

Lily Yen. A note on multiset permutations. SIAM Journal on Discrete Mathematics, 7(1):152155, February 1994.

Lily Yen. Contributions to the Proof Theory of Hypergeometric Identities. PhD thesis, University of Pennsylvania, 1993.

Postdoctoral Fellowship, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), 1993-96.

Award for Outstanding Teaching, Math 141 (integral calculus), Math 240 (calculus III) and Math 241 (differential equations), University of Pennsylvania, 1992-93.

1967 Science and Engineering Graduate Scholarship, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), 1989-93.

William Penn Fellowship (cross-discipline competition awarded to fewer than ten admitted graduate students), University of Pennsylvania, 1989-93.

Dean's Medal in Pure Sciences (4.06 GPA), Simon Fraser University, 1989.

Undergraduate research scholarship, applied mathematics under Dr. Bojadziev, Simon Fraser University, 1986.

Undergraduate research scholarship, discrete mathematics under Dr. Godsil and Dr. Heinrich, Simon Fraser University, 1985.

Gordon Shrum Entrance Scholarship, Simon Fraser University, 1984-88.

First female member, Canadian team, International Math Olympiad, Czechoslovakia, 1984.

Gold medal, BC Scholarship Examination, 1984.

Provincial champion in Grade 11 (Fermat), Canadian Mathematics Competition, 1983.