Position Type 
2013 - Present
All Affiliations 



May Mei joined the Denison faculty in 2013 after completing her PhD in mathematics at the University of California, Irvine. In addition to teaching a wide variety of courses, Dr. Mei is the faculty advisor for Pi Mu Epsilon, the math honor society. She relishes conversations with aspiring young mathematicians and encourages all interested parties to stop by her office for a chat.

B.A., University of California, Berkeley; M.S., Ph.D., University of California, Irvine


Dynamical Systems, Number Theory

One of my research interests involves the application of dynamical systems (uniformly hyperbolic, partially hyperbolic, symbolic) to mathematical physics. Specifically, I use dynamical techniques to investigate spectral properties of operators involved in the study of quasicrystals. I'm also interested in conducting numerical experiments related to the long-term behavior of several specific dynamical systems.

Another one of my research interests lies in number theory and integer sequences. Think of a number, now square the digits and sum that. What do you get? If you keep iterating this procedure, you will either end up at a 1 or a 4. If you end up at a 1, the number you started with is called a happy number. I study several generalizations of this procedure.

Both of these areas have many possibilities for undergraduate research.



Selected publications:

  • B. Baker Swart, K. Beck, S. Crook, C. Eubanks-Turner, H. Grundman, M. Mei, and L. Zack, Augmented Generalized Happy Functions, to appear in the Rocky Mountain Journal of Mathematics.
  • M. Mei and W. Yessen, Tridiagonal Substitution Hamiltonians, Math. Model. Nat. Phenom. 9 (2014), no. 5, 204 - 238.
  • M. Mei, Spectra of Discrete Schrodinger Operators with Primitive Invertible Substitution Potentials, J. Math. Phys. 55 (2014), no. 8, 082701, 22pp.


Student Collaborations 

Selected student research projects:

  • M. Mei and A. Read-McFarland, Numbers and the Heights of Their Happiness.