Dr. Van Hamme received his Doctor of Science in Astronomy degree from Ghent University (Belgium) in 1981. He joined FIU's Department of Physics in 1988 and served as department chair from 2004 to 2011, managing the department's rapid growth and advocating for teaching reform of introductory physics courses, and the establishment of a physics education research group. He was appointed Associate Director in 2011 and Executive Director in 2016 of the School of Integrated Science and Humanity in the College of Arts, Sciences & Education.
Van Hamme's areas of research include interacting binary stars, binary star evolution, and the search for planets around stars other than the Sun. He is the co-developer of one of the most widely used and comprehensive computer programs to extract astrophysical information from binary star observational data.