Alexis Mathieson was born and raised in Newark, New Jersey. Upon graduation from high school, Alexis will have earned 60 college credits and an Associate Degree from Bard College. Having experienced the loss of her father to gun violence and financial challenges throughout her childhood, Alexis has sought opportunities that will reshape her life and the lives of other children and families in her community. She is the Vice President of the National Honor Society, a Student Ambassador for Bard High School and a Junior Mentor for the Rutgers Future Scholars Program. Alexis plans to work for the Newark Police Department as a forensic psychologist who will also create community-based programs that will make the cities safe again. She dreams of reforming the City of Newark so that children can play outside without the fear of gun fire, where public schools are properly funded, and where community residents are friendly, respectful and loving towards one another. As a participant of the Rutgers Future Scholars pre-college program, Alexis has been awarded an academic scholarship to attend Rutgers University-Newark School of Criminal Justice. She was also selected to join the Honors Living-Learning Community at RU-Newark, a program that aims to transform college students into community leaders through service learning and civic engagement.