First, I would like to thank my parents, Mark Lacko and Tracy Strong, for supporting my decision to put off the “real world” for two more years and enroll at Wake Forest. I know it didn’t seem like the best decision at the time, but everything happens for a reason, right? I was simply trusting my cape. Additionally, I would like to thank my big little brother, Jeffrey Lacko, for making me laugh and keeping me sane and humble while I was off succeeding.
I am so blessed to have such a (large) loving and supportive family. I would like to thank my grandfather, Jack Strong, for instilling an interest and love of education in me at a young age. I would also like to thank my extended Lacko and Strong families for constantly reminding me that learning can be cool, too. Molly, I may never figure out why I came to graduate school, but I know I wouldn’t have gotten through it without you. Thank you for helping me to keep my chin above water with your witty banter, “Strongisms,” and oversized baked goods. It’s just like eating an elephant
Additionally, I am thankful for the Wake Forest faculty, without whom I (obviously) wouldn’t be where I am today. Dr. Marina Krcmar, thank you for playing such a huge role in the final stretch of my education. I appreciate your guidance, all of your valuable feedback, and for providing me with a brilliant role model! To my advisor, Dr. Steven Giles, thank you for accepting me as an advisee despite the geographical difficulty; thank you for your assistance, advice, and sense of humor. Dr. John Petrocelli, thank you for stepping up to the plate, and for providing valuable psychological insight to my project. Dr. John Llewellyn, thank you for your gracious editing; you are an exemplary writer, and one I am proud to have worked with! Finally, Dr. Louden, thank you for giving me the opportunity to prove myself! Our entire class is blessed to have worked with you.