Ben Hawkins

Assistant Professor

Phone: 805-756-6203
Office: 41A-219
Curriculm Vitae Download



Professor Hawkins received a BS in Electrical Engineering from CSU, Fresno, in 2005 and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from Cornell University in 2011. His undergraduate work focused on electromagnetism, and his culminating project was a loosely-coupled inductive power transfer system for charging car batteries. His dissertation work was completed under Prof. Brian Kirby in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Dept. and focused on the use of electrokinetic techniques. specifically dielectrophoresis, to manipulate and analyze mycobacteria (related to tuberculosis) in microfluidic systems. He continued his work on microfluidic systems, this time focusing on the growth of clinically relevant bacterial biofilms as a Research Fellow for the National Academy of Sciences at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). After completing his work at NIST, from 2012 to 2016 Prof. Hawkins taught at San Jose State University (SJSU) in the Biomedical, Chemical, and Materials Engineering Department. Throughout his time at SJSU, he worked on undergraduate and graduate projects that lie at the intersection between Electrical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering, focusing on the use of microfluidics to determine the efficacy and effect of antibiotic treatments on bacterial biofilms.


BS Electrical Engineering (2005 from CSU, Fresno) with Minors in Math and Physics PhD, Biomedical Engineering (2010 from Cornell University) with minor fields in Mechanical Engineering and Microbiology.

Class Schedule

Teaching and Research Interests

My professional interests focus on the development and use of microsystems (biosensors, microcontrollers, etc) to matters of human health. Primarily this is focused on microfluidics, but also ranges from wearable devices to laboratory equipment. Applications range from cell measurements to ecological questions. Primary Research Areas: Microfabrication Biosensors Microfludics Electromagnetics Dielectrophoresis Biofilms


  • BMED Profile
    I have a dual appointment between the Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering Departments. My home department is BMED.