Trenten Ward

Trenten Ward


Trenten is a co-winner of the Gilbert L. Lycan History Award for Outstanding Senior this year and was also a co-winner of last year’s Gilbert L. Lycan History Award for Outstanding Junior. A double major in History and Political Science, he has minors in Latin American and Latino Studies, and Psychology. He is a member of Phi Alpha Theta (History Honor Society), Pi Sigma Alpha (Political Science Honor Society), Phi Beta Kappa and Young Americans for Freedom. In 2021, he was awarded both a Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience Grant and a History Department Evans Johnson Research Grant.

His senior thesis, “Guns or Democracy: Demilitarization and Decreasing Lethal State Repression in Costa Rica after 1949,” focused on how abolishing the military and reforming the police, in 1949, affected the severity of state repression in Costa Rica from 1900 to 2018. Many of the sources for his thesis comprised Spanish-language primary documents.

Trenten’s post-graduation plans are to take a gap year to apply for scholarships and admission to graduate programs before attending graduate school, with the eventual goal of finding a job related to his field. Professors have praised him for his commendable work ethic, for being “an avid learner… [who] actively participates in discussions and has many creative ideas,” and for “his inquisitiveness, dedication to the field of History, and ability to channel many, many details into a well-written and sophisticated argument.” 

Political Science

Trenten is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Pi Sigma Alpha, and Phi Alpha Theta. He is a young man who has been awakened and transformed by political science (and, to be fair, by history too). Curiosity, tenacity, focus, hard work -- these are a few of the qualities that Trenten brought with him to Stetson.

He leaves us with a desire to continue to do research in political behavior, political psychology and the current ebbs and flows of democracies throughout the world.

Please take that trip to Costa Rica someday!