Alumna Heather (Bundy ’00) Byars initially did not plan to come to LCU. She lived near New York and graduated from a large high school, and so couldn’t imagine moving to West Texas for college. Her parents, Bill (‘83) and DeeDee (Johnson ‘77) Bundy, told her to attend LCU for a year before deciding to transfer elsewhere. After only a day at freshmen orientation, Byars felt connected and drawn to the LCU atmosphere. Her first year experience persuaded her to stay for the remainder of her college career.
“You show up and your professors care, they become your friends. You have people from all walks of life. Everyone wants you to succeed. It’s an atmosphere of really wanting the best for people. Which is why I stayed. Yes, my parents forced me to go to LCU, but I chose to stay there. And I loved every second of it,” said Byars.
During her time at LCU, Byars majored in education with focuses in theatre and English. She was a member of Kappa Phi Kappa and participated in Wednesday devos.
She also joined theatrical productions in any capacity she could: an actress in “Daisy Pulls It Off”; the student director “Pluto’s Ear,” an original play by Dr. Don Williams; an actress in her favorite show during her time at LCU, “Dancing at Lughnasa”; and a dancer in “Oklahoma” opposite her future husband, Matthew Byars (’00).
Byars met her husband during the run of “Pluto’s Ear,” during which time she tried to set him up with a friend. It wasn’t until the new “Star Wars” movie came out that they really connected and planned their first date.
After graduation, Matthew and Heather moved to Georgia to obtain Matthew’s doctorate. When he began applying for jobs, LCU called to offer him a position with the English faculty. They packed up, moved to Lubbock, and have been here in the seven years since.
Since moving back to Lubbock, Byars notes that she has accomplished much: she has built a family here, she has made former president George W. Bush giggle, and she has been teaching theater, speech, and debate at Frenship High School for five years now.
“My favorite part of teaching theatre is seeing the students find something in themselves that they didn’t know was there,” said Byars.
Heather Byars exemplifies the authentic and unique personality LCU campus strives to have by being intentional and authentically Christian.