Student Victoria Speake Wins National Honor for Her Work in Family Studies St. Thomas Newsroom April 25, 2013 Senior family studies, psychology and sociology student Victoria Speake has earned recognition by the National Council on Family Relations as the recipient of its prestigious NCFR Honors Student Award. The award is given annually to a select group of graduating seniors demonstrating exceptional scholarship, outstanding accomplishments, leadership and service in the fields of family science and family studies. Vicky Speake “I have rarely had the honor myself of learning with a family scholar such as this one,” wrote Family Studies faculty member Dr. Meg Wilkes Karraker in her nomination of Speake. “Ms. Speake is very smart, works very hard, and continually seeks opportunities to challenge herself, to lead and to serve. Capable and articulate, she is also a team player and scrupulously respectful of others. I know of no one more deserving of this honor.” Director of Family Studies, Dr. Carol Bruess, further notes: “Victoria is one of those superstar students, always going the extra mile and willing to take on the extra challenge. No question, she’s going to head out into the world and make a difference in the lives of many individuals and families. With her passion for understanding family systems and providing support for families and couples, she’s on a mission to create healthier lives and communities, and that’s pretty darn cool.” Speake’s academic and career goals include getting her M.A. in marriage and family therapy, taking her licensure test, and working in a small private practice. As a student at UST, Speake already has been committed to making lives and communities better. She has participated in a VISION service trip, mentored members of the YoungLife organization, and worked with a service-based sorority to provide food for those in need. She has membership in four honor societies, works as an education assistant in the Psychology Department and recently has presented research on “Religious Family Values, Family Business Virtues,” which she co-wrote with Karraker, her faculty mentor.