Outstanding Graduate, Spring 2023
Tallinn Speek has always been drawn to the action and impact behind engineering. He admired the values of engineering disciplines and wanted to develop his understanding of the way systems come together and how to develop them through creative ways of thinking and delivering meaningful solutions.
“The world is constantly facing difficult problems that require diverse perspectives to solve,” Speek says. “Engineering fosters the skill sets and work ethic that are required to drive positive change in the world.”
During his time as a student in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University, Speek strove to establish the communities he wishes to see, both personally and professionally, as co-founder of both the T.W. Lewis Center for Personal Development, a student ambassador program, and The Collective, a social organization.
“This community has become my closest friends who I rely on in times of celebration, deliberation and hardship,” Speek says. “The connections and memories made with this group have been foundational to my collegiate experience, fulfillment and future aspirations.”
He also designed a company concept for creating adaptive wetsuits for scuba diving to improve accessibility for people with disabilities. Speek was inspired by his experience scuba diving and helping certify a quadriplegic diver. Inspired to increase the accessibility of scuba diving, Speek used his engineering education and experience at an entrepreneurial boot camp to develop the new wetsuit.
Speek’s project earned him a segment on the Arizona’s Family local news channel and connected him with his future mentor Joe Dunnigan, director of global brand strategy and marketing at GoPro. He says Dunnigan helped him redefine how he sees himself as well as how he interacts with the world.
“The experiences, frameworks and perspectives helped me achieve my goals in ways that are rooted in alignment, tied into my core values and drive positive impact in the world,” says Speek, a student in ASU’s Barrett, The Honors College.
“I originally came to ASU for the honors college and hands-on engineering degree,” Speek says. “I am leaving ASU having found an incredible community, diverse experiences and a transformed perspective of the world.”
He is currently working at LightWorks, a sustainability-focused research initiative based in ASU’s Global Institute of Sustainability and Innovation. After finishing his undergraduate degree, Speek will be continuing his education at ASU as a master’s degree student in global management as part of the Accelerated Master’s degree program. He plans to work in management consulting to solve challenging problems and build communities through curiosity, connection and authenticity.