Ajay graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in Zoology in December of 2020. While in school, Ajay gained much of his research experience through the Florida Museum of Natural History.   There he served as a curatorial assistant in the ornithology collections, data analyst in the Ordway lab of ecosystem conservation and as a field crew member in Thailand with the ichthyology department. Through working with freshwater fishes in Thailand, Ajay fell in love with the field of wildlife biology, and realized his passion of becoming a researcher. While at UF, Ajay also worked as an REU intern at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, a multi-position intern at Rapid Genomics, and started his own small business specializing in custom acrylic and wood products.

Closely after graduating, Ajay worked as a technician for Mississippi State University, where he conducted point counts for secretive marsh birds along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Ajay joined the Hopkins Lab in August 2021 and will conduct field and laboratory work relating to the Eastern Hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis alleganiensis).

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A Patel