by Anna Fofana
Julia Reeder, a senior cinema studies major and with a screenwriting minor, has spent her time at Purchase breaking in her passion for film and writing, while also trying to have a normal college experience just like everyone else.
Reeder has always loved storytelling. When she first came to Purchase as a freshman, she majored in literature. However, she took a screenwriting course that same year and realized that film was something that she really wanted to focus on as a career path, so she switched her major to cinema studies and added on a screenwriting minor.
Reeder is spending her senior year at home and despite having a strong desire to be on campus, she’s trying to look at the bright side and is using the fact that she has a light schedule to finish her degree and senior project.
Even though she isn’t writing as much as she used to, Reeder has been using her time to study film instead. So far, she has been watching new movies as well as going back to the movies she loves. Doing this helps drive and motivate her into wanting to continue to study film.
Sophomore playwriting and screenwriting, Tatum McMullan, chimes in about how she always admired Reeder for how passionate she is with her writing and how she always makes sure that everyone is okay.
For McMullan, it was always nice to see someone who is within her department to be there to help and is willing to be a support system for anyone who may need it.
When Julia graduates, she is really interested in moving to South Korea to teach English, but also study the way films are made there compared to how they’re made in Western countries. Her interest in South Korean culture comes from her love of the famous Korean pop band, BTS. She finds them to be a unique band and connects to their music in a way that other artists have failed to do. Despite the language barrier, their music touches her in such a positive way, as well as people from around the world like no other.
“It’s such a family,” added Reeder.
Scotia Morris, a junior at SUNY Purchase, added that the media Reeder consumes has contributed to the person she is today. Morris expressed that Reeder really takes the messages from the media about things like mental health and self-love to heart.
“It doesn’t define her,” said Morris. “But it makes her think about how she goes about her life.”
There is a stigma around the K-Pop culture for being “toxic” or “weird”. Reeder believes that the types of people who claim this don’t really understand what the culture is since it’s not like Western culture, so it’s easier to ignore it and call it weird, rather than giving it a chance and looking into it more.
“It is very similar to what anime is,” says Reeder. “We need to get over our oppression and see it for what it is.”
She seeks out music that means something to her and it changes the way that she listens to music. Some people might even consider the way music influences her to be admirable because she beats to the music of her own drum and is unapologetic about getting into a specific topic.
Junior Lisa Sepa, and best friend to Reeder, added how much of a privilege it has been to witness her growth over the past few years, both personal and professional. They were roommates their freshman year while rooming in a seven-person suite. She describes her as someone who doesn’t give up and always tries to stand up for not only herself but for others as well.
“She doesn’t let anyone stand in the way of her dreams,” says Sepa.
Reeder and Sepa have been best friends for the past two years and have been through a lot together, from spending holidays with each other's families, getting matching tattoos and also running The Rocky Horror Picture Show club together. Reeder is someone that Sepa truly admires.
“Since coming to college, I’ve noticed something has awakened in her,” said Sepa. “All of her fears and insecurities have been healed by passion. The
fears may still
exist, but that will never stop her.”
Ramiel Stevenson, a Purchase College sophomore, talked about the radiance that Reeder brings wherever she goes.
“When I saw her for the first time, I stopped and stared,” added Stevenson. “She was so beautiful and so kind.”
Something that Stevenson noticed about Julia was her work ethic and how dedicated she can become with her work. He has never once seen her give up on anything and noticed how she always puts 100% into everything she does, no matter what. Even when she is ill, she would still make the effort to complete her tasks.
“Some may find it intimidating when their dreams and goals change a bit,” says Sepa. “But Julia has embraced this passion and I could not be more excited to see where this takes her.”