Chicago-Kent’s Intellectual Property program is highly focused on patent law, offering both practical experience and specialized coursework for those interested in this complex field.
First and foremost, the IP Patent Clinic is a 3-credit course with an associated internship that is offered in the fall and spring semesters. Patent Law is recommended, but not required; preference will be given to students with a technical background or who have taken the Patent Law course. Participants function as student interns and work with and are supervised by adjunct clinical faculty who are patent lawyers at K&L Gates in providing patentability opinions, performing clearance searches, and guiding clients through the range of intellectual property legal issues that typically face start-up inventors and companies. In addition, the students make presentations to Illinois Institute of Technology faculty and students on patent issues in an attempt to educate and market the IP Patent Clinic to the faculty and students.
The Chicago-Kent Patent Hub allows students to volunteer and gain experience in interacting with actual inventors applying for Patent Hub assistance. The students have the opportunity to sit in and participate in invention disclosure calls and perform related real-life patent work on their own schedule and as they have availability. Interested students should reach out to the director of the Patent Hub.
Additionally, Chicago-Kent offers a Patent Practicum course, taught by the Patent Hub director. This course focuses on the substantive and procedural requirements for preparing and prosecuting patent applications. Strong emphasis is placed on drafting patent claims and preparing effective responses to rejections of applications by the U.S. Patent Office.
Finally, Chicago-Kent students can work in externships for major Intellectual Property firms in the Chicago area that specialize in patent law, thus allowing them the opportunity to gain valuable work experience in the field before graduation.