Skip to Content
Lisa Parnell, headshot
Lisa Parnell, headshot

Lisa Parnell

Assistant Professor of Graphic Design

Our program is unique because we are creating creative entrepreneurs and the next design leaders who want to solve problems and strive to create positive change.


MFA, Kent State University

The Love of Art

I started with a paintbrush and a love of typography. I found the love of thinking about ideas and freely observing them, taking shape, losing myself in my work—a multi-disciplinary graphic designer designing with a social focus, using my design skills to make the world a better place. 

Miss Sharp, my Art teacher:  An afternoon with one line gave me a purpose and direction and sparked my curiosity She said, "You would make a great graphic designer."  I thought what is graphic design? I love the sound of it? Walking into that class changed my mindset; it felt good.

My travels began; I love being a designer - human-centered graphic design, solving problems, and designing for good, a messy process that challenges and creates meaningful outcomes, design with a social focus. 

Today I strive to be a good teacher, encouraging students to take intelligent chances and allowing room to recover from their failures, and wanting them to believe that they can achieve anything they want, might be a messy process. Still, they are brilliant and unique and have the gifts that lead them there. No matter how big the dream is, it is doable to challenge yourself with passion, determination, and risks.

Bridge the gap between education and the creative industry. Creating the right mindset, curiosity, spirited, kindness, and reflection.

Research in the Classroom

I am constantly investigating how we are preparing students for the pressures of the creative industry, fast-paced, ever-changing design community. Areas focused on social change and how we as designers keep the work visually captivating and expressive—having a visual sensibility appreciating design.

Preparing Students

My favorite part of this job is to inspire young designers through a positive voice, helping through design challenges, pursuing their creative path, keeping it fresh, vibrant, and relevant. Opening the mindset "believe in yourself, and you can do this." I did and I wouldn't have thought my younger self would be a professor today and still learning.

Invest in the Future

Mount Union invests in students' successes. Small classes enable the faculty to get to know the students and watch them grow from freshman to their next adventurous journey.

Why Mount Union?

I share similar values regarding our roles as leaders and mentors in education. My unique industry experience enables me to help students bridge the gap between education and industry in the design field.

Helping Create Thinkers

Our program is unique because we are creating creative entrepreneurs and the next design leaders wanting to solve problems and strive to create positive change.