President, Trinity Western University 1974-2006
President Emeritus 2006-present
As the University's second president, Dr. R. Neil Snider has led Trinity Western's development from a fledgling junior college of 350 students to become Canada's premier Christian liberal arts and sciences university. As a full member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC), Trinity Western University enrols over 3500 students, attracts world-class faculty and research funding, and grants undergraduate and graduate degrees in over 50 areas of study.
Neil Snider holds education degrees from the University of Manitoba and a Ph.D. in educational administration from the University of Oregon. He is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Free Church of Canada. In the early days of his career, he gained a broad range of leadership experience in education, serving at Providence College in such capacities as Chair of General Studies, Dean of Students and Academic Dean. In 1974, Dr. Snider was appointed President and, since then, has committed his life to TWU's mission of developing godly leaders. Over the years, Neil and his late wife Marlie welcomed thousands of TWU students into their home and touched countless lives in a personal way.
His visionary direction and emphasis on experiential, ‘whole-person’ education led the institution to become a university that would not merely educate people but develop leaders with integrity and a broad perspective of knowledge for the marketplaces of life. Many milestones were achieved under Dr. Snider’s leadership: in 1979, Trinity Western College was granted a provincial charter to become a four year degree-granting institution; in 1984, the University was granted full membership in the AUCC; and in 2004 the University received the coveted exempt status from the Degree Quality Assessment Board. Throughout the years, programs and schools were established, strengthening the academic programs of the University. These included the School of Graduate Studies program—which now offers fifteen graduate degrees, the consortium of ACTS Seminaries, the Nursing program and the Schools of Business, Education and Human Kinetics.
In 2002, Dr. Snider was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Commemorative Medal in recognition of citizens who have helped create the Canada of today. While presenting the award, Senator St. Germain acknowledged TWU as a University which is “recognized worldwide for the excellent calibre of education that it produces.” Dr. Snider has also been awarded honorary doctoral degrees from McMaster University, Tyndale University College and Briercrest College.
Dr. Snider is Canada’s longest serving president in the AUCC and is a member of the Council of Western Canadian University Presidents, as well as a board member of several charitable organizations.
In 2006 Dr. Snider was honoured with the title of President Emeritus at the inauguration of the University’s third president, Jonathan S. Raymond, Ph.D.