ASU Polytechnic campus political science major found his passion a few miles from home
Editor’s note: This is part of a series of profiles for spring 2019 commencement.
While some high school students want to get far away from home to find themselves and have a certain college experience, ASU graduate Kyle Hohmann never had that mindset. He has known what he has wanted to do since early on in high school.
“I have been interested in politics and government since a young age,” Hohmann recalled. “I remember tracking polls and following coverage of the 2012 election as a freshman in high school and have followed every election since. What really got me interested in policy, however, was my involvement in speech and debate in high school. I participated in my first debate tournament when I was a sophomore, and while my views have evolved a lot since then, my interest in public policy has remained.”
Hohmann, who grew up in Gilbert, Arizona, knew that he didn’t need to leave home in order to pursue his dreams, and when ASU added the political science major at the Polytechnic campus the fall semester of his freshman year, that was the perfect fit for his situation.
Now, even with graduation in the rearview mirror, Hohmann still has no desire to leave his home state.
“I don’t know where I’ll end up, but hopefully I’ll end up with a job that allows me to stay in Arizona,” said Hohmann, who served a year’s term as senator in ASU Undergraduate Student Government at the Polytechnic campus. “I think local government is an area I’ll want to continue to focus on with whatever career I end up with.”
Hohmann recently shared with ASU Now more about some of his experiences while at the university and his plans for the future.
Question: What’s something you learned while at ASU — in the classroom or otherwise — that surprised you, that changed your perspective?
Answer: My internship at the (Arizona) Capitol taught me a lot about how local governments can solve problems and that a lot of positive change for communities comes through this process, rather than relying on the federal government to make changes.
Q: Which professor taught you the most important lesson while at ASU?
A: My Sociology 101 class with Professor Joshua Kane taught me a lot about the importance of counterintuitive solutions to complex problems and not getting caught up with the assumption that a proposed solution is inherently impractical without actually examining it further. It’s a concept I’ve definitely thought a lot about and make a note of in a lot of conversations I have that deal with complex issues we face.
Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’d give to those still in school?
A: Some of the most interesting classes you will take with the best lessons can just as easily be electives as classes related to your major. Take electives that sound interesting to you!
Q: What was your favorite spot on campus, whether for studying, meeting friends or just thinking about life?
A: I made a lot of good memories in the Polytechnic USG (Undergraduate Student Government) office. When I had downtime between classes, that’s the spot where I would usually end up.
Q: Did you do an internship related to your major?
A: Two. My first internship was with Gov. (Doug) Ducey’s reelection campaign, and in my last semester I was a legislative intern for the governor’s office. It was an interesting jump from the world of campaigning to the world of governing, especially since I ended up working with some of my bosses from the campaign in the governor’s office.
Q: If someone gave you $40 million to solve one problem on our planet, what would you tackle?
A: Youth homelessness.
Written by Kynan Marlin, student marketing assistant, College of Integrative Sciences and Arts, and sports journalism major, ASU Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication