SAN FRANCISCO • Ms Sarah Zou, 23, did not feel the urgency to vote in 2008, but this year, the Californian will not pass on the opportunity. "I'm excited to see a female president that a lot of young women can look up to," said Ms Zou, a real estate consultant.
Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is leading her Republican opponent Donald Trump by 10 points among likely women voters, according to Reuters. Data from Gallup also shows women voters have supported the Democratic candidate in each of the last six elections, with President Barack Obama winning women voters by 12 points in 2012.
While Ms Zou is lucky not to have student debt hanging over her head after graduating from university, she says free college tuition is an issue she cares about. "I know a lot of people who are struggling with that and I'm glad Hillary Clinton is now pushing for it," she said.
The Chinese American is also concerned about immigration reform and does not want Islamophobia or a wall to be built between the US and Mexico. Mr Trump, on the campaign trail, has called Mexicans rapists and urged a ban on Muslims travelling to the US.
Growing up in a rich white suburb in Southern California, Ms Zou said most people there support Mr Trump. Her parents, too, lean Republican and Ms Zou had to convince them not to vote for him.
"They vote for Republicans because of taxes and historically the party has not marginalised others," she said. But with Mr Trump, she said, it is different: "He's a racist."
Like most young Americans, Ms Zou had initially supported Mr Bernie Sanders. "I thought he would be a good domestic president, but I did see Hillary Clinton as stronger on foreign relations."
The e-mail scandal involving Mrs Clinton's use of a private server while she was secretary of state has cast a shadow of doubt on her trustworthiness, but Ms Zou is still all for her. "Germany, Taiwan, the UK, all have female leaders... this is our last chance at a female president in the near term," she said.