Student ready to earn bachelor’s degree after 12-year hiatus

It’s never too late to go back to school, as Liza Lybolt knows firsthand.

Liza Lybolt

After a 12-year hiatus from taking her last college class, Lybolt decided to go back to school by enrolling in the University of Houston-Victoria School of Business Administration.

Now the Conroe resident is one month away from graduating with her Bachelor of Business Administration with concentrations in accounting and management. And she won’t be stopping then.

Lybolt is ready to begin her master’s degree in accounting this summer. Her intention is to continue on and earn a doctorate.

“My plan originally was to get a bachelor’s degree and be done with school,” Lybolt said. “But as I began taking class, one thing led do another, and eventually I decided I want to get a Ph.D.”

Lybolt will be graduating summa cum laude May 16. This is earned by students with a GPA of 3.85 or higher. She has taken classes online and at UH Sugar Land, where UHV offers many programs. She also has been active outside the classroom.

She is president of the Gamma Beta Phi honor society and a member of Phi Kappa Phi honor society and Beta Gamma Sigma business honor society. Lybolt also recently was awarded an Accounting Excellence Award through the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants.

Lybolt said she used to be shy, but becoming president of Gamma Beta Phi really helped open her mind and present her with opportunities.

“It’s interesting how one thing changes another,” she said. “It actually helped me improve and opened up other doors for me,” she said. “I was at first reluctant to take it on. I’m glad I did. It has been a great learning experience.”

Though personal reasons stopped Lybolt from finishing her associate degree the first time around, she returned to school in 2010. The opportunity to pursue a bachelor’s degree presented itself in 2012 when Lybolt was laid off from her job. Through the Texas Workforce Commission, Lybolt was able to have her tuition paid for two years through a training program.

Lybolt plans to continue to put her focus on her schoolwork in the Global Master of Business Administration program. Her long-term goal is to teach at a university.

“The UHV faculty and staff are great and very supportive,” she said. “That’s one of the reasons why I chose to continue with my MBA at this university. I’ve had great experiences at UHV, and I support and promote the university any chance I get.”

I am a Jaguar is an online feature highlighting the exceptional students who attend the University of Houston-Victoria. To nominate a student, contact Jeremy Shapiro , UHV communications manager, or call 361-570-4296.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.