About Steve Watkins


  • University of Texas at Austin, Doctor of Philosophy, 1989

Steve Watkins

Electrical & Computer Engineer
121 Emerson Hall

573-341-6321 | watkins@mst.edu


  • University of Texas at Austin, Doctor of Philosophy, 1989


Director of Applied Optics Laboratory (APOL)
Coordinator for the Smart Composite Bridge Project
Associate Chair for EE Undergraduate Studies 2005-2016

Professional Experience includes:
President, IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu (HKN), 2018
Editor-in-Chief, IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu (HKN), THE BRIDGE Magazine 2013-2017
Vice-President of Educational Activities & Awards, IEEE Education Society 2019-20
Division Chair-Elect, ASEE ECE Division 2018-19
Chair and Board Member, ASEE Zone III and Board of Directors 2015-17

Distinguished Visiting Professor 2016-17 & AFRL SFFP Fellow Summer 2018, US Air Force Academy
Faculty Fellow, Summer Institute in Israel, 2013 Program
Faculty-Member-in-Residence for Washington Internships for Students of Engineering 2005
IEEE-USA Congressional Fellow/Legislative Staff for U.S. Congress 2004
Visiting Research Physicist for US Air Force Phillips Laboratory 1989-91
Visiting Scholar for NTT Corp. Japan 1985-86.

Community Service includes:
Dent-Phelps R3 School Board, Salem, Missouri
Terms 2009-2012, 2007-09, 2006-07, 2003-06, and 2001-2003
Offices President 2011-2012, 2010-2011, 2009-2010, and 2008-09 and Vice-President 2007-08


Research interests

Smart Sensors System, Fiber Optics, Imaging, Optoelectronics, Engineering Education, and Pre-college Education.

Associated Teaching - EE 2200 Introduction to Electronic Devices, EE 5210 (co-listed with Physics) Fourier Optics, EE 5220 (co-listed with Physics) Fiber and Integrated Optics, EE 5270 (Co-listed ME and AE) Smart Materials and Sensors, and EE 6200 Electromagnetic Optics

Awards and recognition


  • Fellow 2018 SPIE
  • Senior Member 1998 IEEE
  • Jim Watson Student Professional Awareness Achievement Award 2016 IEEE-USA
  • Regional Activities Board Achievement Award 2004 IEEE
  • Outstanding Member 2005 IEEE Region 5
  • Outstanding Educator 1999 IEEE Region 5