Faculty Feature - Dr. Lisa Myers

Nov 21, 2023
A photo of Dr. Lisa Myers

Faculty Feature - Dr. Lisa Myers

There’s an old adage that says you need to believe in what you’re selling. A&M-Texarkana faculty member Dr. Lisa Myers does just that. Lisa is the Director of the Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences program (BAAS) and Lecturer in Adult Education and Leadership Studies at the university. What she’s selling, to anyone within earshot, is the transformative power of higher education.

Myers grew up in Texarkana and graduated from Arkansas High School with the class of 1984. She attended Texarkana College and Texas A&M University-Texarkana. She graduated from A&M-Texarkana in 2000, earning a bachelor’s degree in English with a minor in psychology.

After earning her undergraduate degree Myers went on to teach high school and junior high English at Texas High and Redwater. She also began working on her master’s degree at A&M-Texarkana during that same time, completing her graduate studies in adult education in 2009. Shortly thereafter she began teaching as an adjunct at Texarkana College, and that’s when everything clicked. She loved teaching at the college level. Along with that, she realized how much she enjoyed working with non-traditional students. Myers believes she connects well with non-traditional students because she herself was one, attending and completing college a little later than many of her classmates.

Myers has worked with and taught in the BAAS program at A&M-Texarkana since 2013 and has fallen in love with helping people achieve their goal of a college degree. “This program creates a way for people to achieve a dream they thought had passed them by,” she said. “We are literally helping people to transform their lives.” Her favorite days of the year are the December and May commencement days, when she watches the students cross the stage to complete their journey. “It really is the best day of the year,” she added. “We talk about how much this will mean to them throughout their time in the program, but on commencement day they realize it. You can see it on their faces.”

The BAAS program is designed for people who started but never completed a degree as well as people who have years of experience in the workplace and want to earn college credit for what they have learned in work and life. The mission/purpose of the BAAS program is to value and recognize what students bring with them and build on that to support them in becoming intentional learners who can skillfully lead self and others in ambiguous, complex situations and environments.

Using a series of assessments, external assessors in the field of adult education look at a student’s learning portfolio and determine the complexity and depth of their skill sets. College credit is then awarded based on the level of the student's knowledge practiced in specific occupations outlined by the Department of Labor. 

One of the major advantages of the program, Myers says, is that it can be completed entirely online. Most of the program’s students are working adults who have responsibilities that prohibit them from attending college in the traditional face-to face manner. The online element provides much needed flexibility for them in scheduling and attending classes.

After a decade of leading the BAAS program, Myers says she loves what she does and feels a personal connection to the university. “This is a place of resurrected dreams,” she said. “It transformed me, personally, and I get to help others do the same. Every vision of who I am and who I will be includes this place.”

Lisa and her husband Kevin, a Texarkana native and THS graduate, met in high school at a church choral music festival and have been married for 39 years. For the past 20 years Kevin has been the lead pastor at Highland Park Baptist Church in Texarkana. The couple has one daughter, Morgan Raffray, and two granddaughters- Scarlett (4) and Vivian (3).

If you would like more information about the Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences visit the program website.