Changemaker: Julia Hartlep


Miscalcul[Asian] Magazine Fall Issue. Danielle Zheng (Senior) and Julia Hartlep (Junior) are the co-founders of Miscalcul[Asian], a media network with over 7k followers on Instagram.

Ciaran Cole

What defines activism or an activist to you regardless of the issue you are fighting for?To me, “activism” is a very broad term. But personally I view activism as actively working towards bringing about needed change, whether that’s through petitioning, spreading awareness, organizing events, etc. However, the most important thing is to realize that it’s not about you personally – it’s about the change that you’re fighting for. Getting “credit” is definitely not the end goal, and performative activism is not activism at all.

What areas of activism are you involved in?
Obviously, as a minor, I don’t have a lot of avenues available to me – I can’t even vote yet. But there’s still a lot I can do. Whenever I’m made aware of an issue, I do my best to educate myself on it, and afterward educate others. However, the categories of issues I am working for are the environment, global equality and human rights, and social issues.

What is your motivation or the story behind your activism? Why did you join the movement(s) and club(s) that you did?
I don’t think that anyone needs any special motivation – just basic human empathy. We all seek to make things better for everyone, and activism is just another facet of that.

Have you done anything recently in regards to advocating for social justice or other causes? Like the Downtown BLM Appleton Protests or anything else?
Unfortunately, due to the still-ongoing pandemic, I was not able to attend any protests or events that had such a large amount of people physically together. But I’ve been doing all that I can to educate myself and make sure that I have the best possible understanding of everything going on around us. And I believe that that’s the best place to start. The very next step I took was working towards providing that education, including the resources, to others.

In the short-term, what laws, practices or changes are you seeking in the community/world on the topic of your issue?
It’s a harsh reality that the majority of our goals will take a very, very long time to achieve. But still, some “smaller” goals I would love to see fulfilled soon include the elections of certain politicians on the local, state, and national levels, and some officials even taking the time to address these issues.

Activists all want to create change, but what specifically do you want to be changed?
Even though we’ve definitely progressed from the past, there are still so many things to be changed. But for me, personally, I’ve been working the most towards preserving the environment, global equality and human rights, and social issues

What long-term goals do you hope to accomplish as a part of the movement(s) you are involved in?
Obviously the end goal is to bring about the ultimate change – is to solve the issues. The reality is that that will take a long, long time. In the meantime, we can provide resources to others to help them get the best education possible on these issues, including exposure. One of the best ways to get this is through local events – panels/conferences, protests, etc.

Is there a personal, misunderstood, or drowned out the message in that you want to the chance to share with the readers of the Noctiluca?
It’s very important that I recognize my own privilege and the fact that I am definitely not affected by these issues as much as others are. So I guess that’s why I do it – I want everyone to have it at least as good as I do.