History of the ODU Art Department/Ron Snapp

Ron SnappEdit

Ron Snapp (born Feb 3, 1943) is a retired faculty. He taught both drawing and painting at Old Dominion University during his 35 year tenure, from 1973 to 2008.


Snapp attended Pueblo Junior College in Pueblo, Colorado which then became a 4 year college called Southern Colorado State College, which is where he earned his Bachelor’s degree. He then took a break from higher education and taught Junior High. Snapp taught Art, English and Science at Eaton Junior High School. After 4 years of that, he went on to receive his Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. While he was working on his master’s degree there, he taught an assistantship. He also taught a printmaking class at Duke University.

Old Dominion UniversityEdit

After receiving his Master’s degree, he was hired to teach drawing at Old Dominion University. He eventually phased out of the drawing program and taught painting almost exclusively. At ODU, he served as the Graduate Program Director for 6 years. He also ran the University Gallery: first in conjunction with Ken Daley, then with Dave Johnson and lastly by himself. He was highly involved with the University Gallery throughout his 35 year tenure at ODU.

Snapp was reluctant to discuss his awards and accomplishments. He did state, however, that his goal as a teacher was to take people who were interested in art to the point that they were intelligent about it. Also he sought to push students past a point they would have gone themselves.

He was particularly proud of a conversation he had with Betsy Batten, daughter of Frank Batten the Chairman and CEO of Landmark Communications. He helped her to set up a $100,000 grant to the art department at Old Dominion University. This grant is specifically for hosting visiting artists and is still in use today.