Lisa Howe

Degree: Ph.D. History

College/School: Steven J. Green School of International and Public Affairs

Lisa Howe was born in Hialeah to a single mother, who, with the help of her of aunts and grandmother, raised her to be determined and resilient.

After graduating from high school, Lisa attended Miami Dade College and became a court reporter, a job she held for the next 15 years. However, Lisa had always dreamed of going back to school to pursue a Ph.D.

At the age of 23, Lisa suffered her first great setback when she was diagnosed with lupus. After four years of chemotherapy and other treatments, Lisa’s kidneys failed and she was put on dialysis.

Eight years later, Lisa’s aunt Susie donated a kidney, giving Lisa a new chance at life. In 2005, just one year later, Lisa enrolled in FIU to earn her bachelor’s degree in history.

In Fall 2007, under the mentorship of Professor Rebecca Friedman, Lisa enrolled in the accelerated Ph. D. program. Over the course of her studies, Lisa suffered several hardships including losing her biggest cheerleaders – her mother and grandmother – within nine months of each other, and getting nerve damage after surgery on her wrist. After 8 years, Lisa achieved her life-long dream and is graduating with her Ph.D. in history.

After graduation, Lisa is looking for a postdoctoral opportunity to turn her dissertation on Emma Hardinge Britten, an advocate for the early modern spiritualist movement, into a book manuscript and hopes to one day teach history classes.