Axel Perez is a sophomore at Jose Marti STEM Academy. He has conducted molecular biology and bioinformatics research as part of the Rutgers Waksman Student Scholars Program where he isolated, purified and analyzed novel Landoltia Punctata DNA sequences to be published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information. Additionally, he has investigated the effect of Hericium erinaceus on Parkinson’s disease. His STEM interests lie in biology. He is the Vice President of the Brain Bee Club, where he teaches his peers various neuroscience topics, and he was a finalist in the 2023 state competition. He also serves as the Parliamentarian of his HOSA chapter and is a dedicated member of the NJ PREP Youth Advisory Board and the New Jersey Department of Health’s Voice of Youth Committee. Axel aspires to pursue a career in the medical field and give back to his underserved Hispanic community.