Pioneer Public: Sarah Hoy

Written By Kylie Thomas, Co-Features/A&E Editor

Point Park students hear a lot about Pennsylvania politics since the university is located in Pennsylvania but not all students actually vote in the state. Instead, these votes go out to the states that students come from, located all over America. Junior theatre arts major Sarah Hoy, is one of these students who voted outside of Pennsylvania this Election Day.

Sarah Hoy|For The Globe

When it comes to the subject of voting, it wasn’t a matter of if Hoy was going to vote in this year’s election since she’s voted every chance since she’s turned 18. Instead, it was a matter of where exactly she’d be voting. 

“My parents are immigrants and went through a long process for the right to vote, and always made sure that we understood the importance of voting,” Hoy said. “So this year I voted by absentee ballot in the mail in Virginia. I wanted to vote in Pennsylvania instead of Virginia, but unfortunately the forms for dual residency came in much later.”

The choice to vote in her hometown wasn’t easy. Hoy lives in Pennsylvania for the entire school year and recently for part of this past summer as well. This makes it weird for her to be voting in a place she isn’t in often and makes it more stressful having to worry about two different states. 

“It is a tough decision voting in your home state when you no longer live there for the majority of the year,” Hoy said. “You have to think about which state swings more, as well as how it would affect you if the election in either state didn’t go as you hoped. Unfortunately for many of us, this means the constant possibility of losing human rights even further. This also means anxiously keeping an eye on different states during election night.”

From Culpeper, Virginia, Hoy comes from a mostly republican area that’s big on Second Amendment gun rights. Growing up, she has seen a variety of issues arise, many of which are influenced by politics, and considers herself part of a small group that votes democratic in the town. 

“Sadly, the area has a large problem with drug abuse with little resources to help with addiction or mental health,” Hoy said when describing problems she’s seen. “The sheriff was, and continues to be, very extremist and is an open Trump supporter. And the new governor, Glenn Youngkin, has already taken steps that make it easier to acquire guns as well as taken rights away from transgender youth in school systems.”

These experiences are just part of the reason why she chose to vote in Virginia for this year’s election. But it isn’t just issues within Hoy’s town that she says are affected by the election but rather issues all across the country.

“This election is especially important because, sadly, this will determine different states’ policies on bodily autonomy,” Hoy said. “It could possibly ban abortion access for millions more.”

While this election is an important one, Hoy notes that every election is important to make sure your voice is heard, especially if you’re a student. After all, soon the younger generation will be leading the country. 

“There are thousands that are working to have the right to vote in this country,  do not throw yours away,” Hoy said. “Whether it’s voting early, voting by mail, or skipping classes to go out and vote, do it. The results from these elections affect everyone. I understand the frustration of voting with lack of results, but when the younger generation moves together we can start and lead movements.”