News Release

Meet the Jacobs School's 17 new faculty

San Diego, Calif., Oct. 14, 2015 -- The Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California, San Diego is building and strengthening its research abilities by hiring 17 new faculty this year. With these hires, the school is increasing its impact in clinical medicine, robotics, wireless technologies, genomics, data sciences and cybersecurity, clean energy, advanced manufacturing—and more. 


Elliot McVeigh

Ph.D. University of Toronto
McVeigh aims to create a completely new imaging paradigm for cardiac care by developing imaging techniques that give patients and their doctors all the information they need to avoid heart attacks. This will allow physicians to guide the right patients into the right courses of treatments, from lifestyle changes to surgery.
Read about Elliot McVeigh in the San Diego Union Tribune.

Previously: Chair, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University


Bruce Wheeler

Adjunct Professor
Ph.D. Cornell University
Wheeler’s bioengineering research interests lie in the application of electrical engineering methodologies to neuroscience, in order to gain better understanding of the behavior of small populations of neurons as they represent brain function. Wheeler’s educational record includes starting biomedical engineering undergraduate degree programs at two universities.

Previously: Chair, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Florida




Manmohan Chandraker

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. UC San Diego
Chandraker’s research focuses on 3D reconstruction and scene understanding. He has developed theoretical frameworks and practical systems for applications in autonomous driving, robotics, 3D modeling and human-computer interfaces. He has led collaborations with the automobile industry aiming towards low-cost, real-time visual systems for navigation, 3D localization and recognition in traffic scenes.
Chandraker is a faculty member of the UC San Diego Center for Visual Computing.

Previously: NEC Labs America

Deian Stefan

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Stanford University
Stefan is interested in exploring new security mechanisms and programming language techniques that can allow developers to build secure systems more easily. He is also exploring browser security architectures, policy languages, and clean-slate methods for building secure, low-level systems and applications, which are notoriously difficult to secure.

Previously: Co-founder GitStar





Farinaz Koushanfar

Ph.D. UC Berkeley
Koushanfar’s research goal is to build more intelligent embedded computer systems that can ensure low-overhead security and trust, reduce energy usage, and improve performance within the physical resource constraints. Her work has applications in internet-of-things, antipiracy systems, medical devices, automotive systems, deep learning networks and secure bioinformatics.

Previously: Associate Professor, Rice University


Duygu Kuzum

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Stanford University
Kuzum develops new nanoscale electronics technologies to better understand circuit-level computation in the brain. She is exploring novel tools to probe brain circuits with high spatial and temporal precision. Her work on brain-inspired nanoelectronic devices is a step towards energy-efficient computation systems that learn and process information in real-time.

Previously: Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Pennsylvania


Siavash Mirarab

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin
Mirarab develops algorithms that can be used to understand evolutionary biology. His work focuses on developing computational methods that can accurately analyze very large biological datasets — such as the genomes of present-day species — and reconstruct their evolutionary history. An understanding of evolutionary biology has applications in species preservation, biodiversity and medicine.

Previously: Ph.D. University of Texas at Austin


Tina Ng

Associate Professor
Ph.D. Cornell University
Ng develops flexible electronics and aims to push the boundary of how electronics are made by incorporating electronic control and power sources onto any surface. Her research methods are based on additive printing, which allows lowtemperature patterning that is compatible with a wide range of materials, reduces wastes and enables rapid, complex design changes.

Previously: Palo Alto Research Center



Michael Yip

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Stanford University
Yip aims to design new dexterous surgical robots that augment the capabilities of surgeons by enabling new clinical treatments, automated surgical methods and improved patient outcomes. He is also developing novel sensors and actuators for biomedical systems and computer vision and augmented reality for surgical training and image-guided surgery. Learn more about Michael Yip's robotics research at UC San Diego in this new-faculty story. Yip is participating in the technology showcase at the UC San Diego Contextual Robotics Forum on Oct. 30, 2015.

Previously: Ph.D. Stanford University




Javier E. Garay

Ph.D. UC Davis
Garay’s work involves the design and synthesis of advanced materials and evaluating their performance in devices. His research focuses on understanding and leveraging nano/microlength-scale-controlled phenomena to optimize material properties and performance for nextgeneration optical devices, magnetic devices and energy storage.

Previously: Professor, UC Riverside




Ertugrul Cubukcu

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Harvard University
Cubukcu explores the way light interacts with matter at the fundamental level. He engineers light-matter interactions at the nanoscale to achieve new functions in optical devices and sensors for medical diagnostics and environmental monitoring. He also investigates two-dimensional semiconducting and semimetallic materials for photonics applications.

Previously: Assistant Professor, University of Pennsylvania



Vicki H. Grassian

Distinguished Professor
Ph.D. UC Berkeley
Grassian’s research focuses on understanding the chemistry of atmospheric aerosol particles, such as sea spray, mineral dust and brown carbon, and how they impact global processes including climate and human health. She is also interested in developing sustainable nanotechnology through the understanding of the environmental and health implications of nanomaterials.

Previously: Professor, University of Iowa



Ping Liu

Associate Professor
Ph.D. Fudan University, China
Liu designs materials and architectures for next-generation energy conversion and storage systems. He aims to develop battery technologies that have capabilities beyond those of today’s lithium-ion batteries and offer lower costs. He also explores batteries as actuators that create mechanical motion for medical, aerospace and energy applications.

Previously: Program Director, Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy


Oscar Vazquez-Mena

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Swiss Federal Institute of Technology of Lausanne, Switzerland
Vazquez-Mena’s research focuses on using the physical properties of two-dimensional atomic materials such as graphene to develop new devices for solar energy harvesting and biomedical applications. His work also involves integrating nanoscale materials with biological structures, such as cell membranes and proteins, to study biophysical processes.

Previously: Postdoctoral Fellow, UC Berkeley



Sheng Xu

Assistant Professor
Ph.D. Georgia Institute of Technology
Xu engineers inorganic materials into a soft format for a new generation of wearable electronics and energy harvesting and storage devices. These “soft” inorganic materials retain the electronic properties of stiff inorganic materials and are the building blocks for advanced electronic systems that can be comfortably integrated with the human body.

Previously: Postdoctoral Scientist, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign




Alicia Kim

Associate Professor
Ph.D. University of Sydney
Kim works at the interface of engineering, computer science and mathematics. She creates optimization methods to find simple and powerful solutions to complex engineering problems, from materials to structures. These solutions provide a common design platform that includes multiphysics considerations. She focuses on aerospace structures and aircraft design.

Previously: University of Bath



Kenneth J. Loh

Ph.D. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Loh’s research program focuses on deriving multifunctional materials and sensors for resilient systems of the future. Specifically, the goal is to encode unique properties in nanocomposites and to derive scalable fabrication techniques for realizing large, fielddeployable applications. Applications of interest include structural health monitoring, human performance sensing, and next-generation materials.

Previously: Associate Professor, UC Davis

Media Contacts

Daniel Kane
Jacobs School of Engineering

Ioana Patringenaru
Jacobs School of Engineering

Liezel Labios
Jacobs School of Engineering