| This fall, aspiring patent attorneys at Suffolk Law gained a valuable new resource: a Patent Law Specialization within the Intellectual Property Law Concentration. Developed by IP concentration co-director Andrew Beckerman-Rodau, the new specialization offers specialized training to students with the appropriate science background.
“The Suffolk IP concentration is already the preferred program for recruiting and training patent attorneys in the Boston area,” Beckerman-Rodau said. “Creation of this specialization more clearly identifies a current major strength.”
The Patent Law Specialization helps prepare students for a highly focused area of law that requires extensive scientific training. “Patent law has always been an area of high demand because it requires people with both a hard science degree and a law degree,” Beckerman-Rodau said. “It’s a particularly important area of legal practice in the Boston area because of the significant amount of research and development in high technology.”
Suffolk Law students wishing to pursue the specialization must either pass the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Registration Exam or demonstrate the scientific background necessary to take the exam. Within the IP concentration, students then take the Patent Law course plus two patent-related electives, and the specialty is added to their concentration certificate upon graduation.
Suffolk Law has long benefited from its proximity to downtown firms engaging in patent work, but its evening program has often proven an equal lure to aspiring patent law attorneys. “Boston law firms want to hire students who can work full-time during the day and attend law school in the evening,” Beckerman-Rodau said. “Many firms hire our students with science backgrounds and pay full law school tuition if they attend Suffolk Law at night.”
Beckerman-Rodau sees the Patent Law Specialization as preparation for a changing world. “The growing importance of technology and the need to protect it will only result in more demand for patent attorneys in the future,” he said.