Leonardo Melo


I am queer and I am a undergraduate researcher in neuroscience.//

I was born in Brazil and immigrated to the US with my parents as a young child. We went on to live in the US for over 14 years as undocumented immigrants. Although I always had it in the back of my mind that I was different from many of my peers because of my nationality and culture, it took me a while longer to realize that I was also different from most because of my sexuality. Having experienced life as an immigrant and a sexual minority has given me a valuable insight into the massive importance of representation, be it in pop culture, business, government, or science. My own journey into STEM started at a very young age, as I have always had a passion for science. As I grew to comprehend myself as a queer person, my curiosity about what it means to fundamentally perceive oneself and others led me down the path of neuroscience. I hope to pursuit this curiosity further along in my academic career. For me, witnessing minorities of all backgrounds transcend society’s expectations is perhaps one of the best indicators of social chance in the right direction, and it also serves as fuel for the work yet to be done.

Instagram @melodeleo