2021 Honors Projects

Celebration of Political Science Honors Theses

Friday May 14th, from 2:30 to 4:00pm.

Zoom ID https://seattleu.zoom.us/s/99116475777). 


 Join us in celebrating the following departmental honors students and their hard work. Each student will present their respective theses.

Photo of Mia Altieri

Election Fraud Rhetoric as a Political Strategy

This research analyzes the potential impacts of election fraud rhetoric on public trust in government structures and the potential use of such claims for shifting election results. Through the use of qualitative data collection from four case studies around the world, this research hopes to answer the question of whether or not election fraud rhetoric can be used as a successful strategy in changing not just the outcomes of elections, but the way in which the public views government institutions.

Mia Altieri

horizontal rule


Sarah Cerdena

The Dangers of Queer Exceptionalism: Resisting Complicity and Co-Optation under

My project investigates the presence of homonationalist sentiment in Seattle news publications by analyzing accounts of hate-crimes and the characterization SPD Safe Place, and initiative intended to increase reporting of bias-related incidents. I ask how queer participation in policing and surveillance contributes to racial Othering of the most marginal members of the LGBTQ community. Finally, I examine alternative ways of conceptualizing public safety to both address the needs of community while eradicating racialized violence carried out by the state.

Sarah Cerdena

horizontal rule


Gabby Fitz

Memorialization in the United States

This project seeks to understand how the record number of memorials removed in 2020 across the U.S. changes and challenges national narratives and collective memory. How can the removal of symbols from the public arena promote societal healing and social justice?

Gabby Fitz

horizontal rule


Lauren Petrik

Not so Black and White: The Interplay of Politics and Religion for Black and Whi

Using cultural tool kit theory, I aim to explain the differences between Black and White evangelicals when it comes to issues of racial inequality and poverty. While the theological resources of Black and White evangelicals may appear to be quite similar, sociocultural factors have a profound influence on the cultural, a therefore theological tool kits of people, influencing their strategies of action when it comes to issues of structural inequality.

horizontal rule


Pichpanharath (Pich) Seng

The Impacts of Local Justice in Sierra Leone and Rwanda

In promoting reconciliation, the Sierra Leonean communities and civil society utilized a range of informal and traditional mechanisms, including community-level restorative justice processes and customary law. Similarly, Rwanda implemented customary law and local forms of justice, specifically the Gacaca court system. Through studying the impacts of these forms of justice in these two countries, this project strives to determine, to what extent, does local justice’s reconciliation and prosecution mechanisms work.