ODU Academics

Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics

The Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics is one of several research centers at Old Dominion University (ODU). The center seeks to understand how pulsed electromagnetic fields and cold ionized gases interact with biological cells to provide more understanding in the fields of biotechnology, medical diagnostics and therapeutics, industrial processing and sterilization, and environmental remediation…. read more »

Department of Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

The Department of Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences is one of the departments that make up the College of Sciences at Old Dominion University (ODU). Most of the classes take place in the Oceanography and Physical Sciences Building. History The oceanography program began as the Oceanography Laboratory in 1960. In 1965, the Institute of Oceanography… read more »

Ulysses V. Spiva

Ulysses V. Spiva served as the first African American dean at Old Dominion University (ODU) from 1979 to 1984. He received his degrees from Tennessee State University, Case Western Reserve University and Stanford University. Before ODU, Spiva served as a principal in Cleveland and held positions at Florida International University and Nova University. Old Dominion… read more »

Old Dominion-Norfolk State Merger

To help with eliminating duplication of programs between Old Dominion University (ODU) and Norfolk State College, the federal government suggested the merger of the two institutions in 1978. History During segregation in Norfolk, African American students were sent to Norfolk Division of Virginia State College, now Norfolk State University, to complete their undergraduate education. After… read more »

Women’s Caucus

The Women’s Caucus is a faculty and staff organization that aims to advance the welfare of women at Old Dominion University (ODU). History The Women’s Caucus was established in 1974 by Carolyn Rhodes, a professor in the Department of English, and Dorothy Johnson, a professor in the Department of History. The organization focuses on obtaining… read more »

Dennis J. Zeisler

Dennis J. Zeisler (1947-2020) was a music instructor at Old Dominion University (ODU) from 1979 until his retirement in 2018. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Music, both from the University of Michigan. Service to Old Dominion and Profession While at ODU, Zeisler served as chair of the Department of Music for 15… read more »

Dr. Louis H. Janda

Dr. Louis H. Janda, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Old Dominion University (ODU), died on March 24, 2020 at the age of 73. Dr. Janda taught at ODU from 1973 until his retirement as Associate Professor Emeritus in 2016. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in psychology in 1969, his Master… read more »

Alexander Brooks “A.B.” Jackson

Alexander Brooks “A.B.” Jackson was the first African American professor at Old Dominion University (ODU). ODU and Personal Accomplishments Jackson taught art at Old Dominion College from 1967 until his death in 1981. Previously the chair of the Art Department at the Norfolk Division of Virginia State College, now Norfolk State University, Jackson specialized in… read more »

Norfolk Division and Segregation

During the 1950s and 1960s, the Norfolk Division of the College of William & Mary denied admission to African American undergraduate students to comply with the Virginia laws of segregation. History During World War II, there were several instances of African American Naval officers taking classes offered by the Norfolk Division at Naval Station Norfolk…. read more »


The Gadfly was a student literary magazine at Old Dominion University (ODU) from 1962 to 1972. History Founded in 1962 by Eric Browne and other students, the Gadfly featured poetry, artwork, satire, photography, and essays in the quarterly magazine. With English professor Leland Peterson as its adviser, the Gadfly pushed the envelope on topics related… read more »