Students looking to engage in the study of Intellectual Property have a plethora of options and face a number of choices when deciding where to attend school. That is especially true here in Chicago with a relatively strong IP market along with a number of schools offering coursework in a rapidly developing and engaging area of the law. Looking back to my decision, I can say with confidence that Loyola was the best option for me. There are three principal reasons why I would choose Loyola again.
1) Professors and Practitioners: Personal Access and Attention
The most valuable part of my experience at Loyola has been the personal attention the students receive. As a student interested in Patent Law specifically, this has been especially true from day one. Before even beginning at Loyola, alumni practicing IP law were available to discuss any concerns and questions I had. Since then I have been able to make contacts in the IP field with Loyola Alumni working for a broad range of firms, from small and large boutique firms headquartered in Chicago to general practice firms that operate on across the globe. This broad network and community has been more than willing to help me with mock interviews and professional advice, to have me visit and get a feeling for their firm’s offices, and to just get coffee and build relationships.
Additionally, the professors, both full-time and adjunct are extremely accessible and encourage conversational and professional development. Beyond just the classroom Loyola professors are willing to counsel students on networking, on getting involved in professional associations and groups, and most importantly take a general concern in the students well-being.
2) Practical Intellectual Property Experience is Readily Available
Stemming from the personal attention given to students, Loyola is able to offer its students vital, real experience. For example, I’ve been able to take practical skill developing coursework such as Legal Writing and Appellate Advocacy with professors who are active intellectual property practitioners establishing real transferable writing experience in the classroom. Additionally, as a 2L, I’ve been lucky to have an externship within the IP Group at Steptoe & Johnson here in Chicago. Working in a firm as a student has offered additional preparation and opened a number of doors for me early on in my career. At Steptoe I’ve had the opportunity to research and draft legal memorandums and perform other tasks with regard to specific patent litigation matters; a unique, distinguishing experience as only a second year student.
Beyond the experiential class work, Loyola also offers a wide range of career services that help students find professional experience. The highlight of this experience thus far is definitely the Patent Interview Program hosted by Loyola every August. This program put on by the Career Services Office offers students the opportunity to interview with hundreds of firms, both local and beyond Chicago. I was able to secure a number of first round interviews, call-backs, and eventually my Summer Associate position through this process.
3) Value of a Balanced Legal Education
Finally, Loyola embraces a broad curriculum for a diverse student body. Loyola looks to graduate well rounded attorneys who are ready to pursue an array of challenging careers. Every student is challenged to succeed in areas beyond their own personal interests and develop an understanding of the responsibilities that come with a legal education. Loyola fosters an environment where students can learn from each other; this is extremely valuable and made possible because of a commitment to a broad range of experience in the students who attend Loyola. Students who worked professionally, who volunteered after being an undergraduate, who pursued other higher degrees before law school, who came straight to law school from their undergraduate institution come together at Loyola to study the law. This mix of experience and professional desires is extremely valuable to a legal education.
For the reasons above and many others, Loyola has been the right place to study Intellectual Property Law. In the end, Loyola offers the challenging course work, the professional experience, and the support necessary for any student to begin a career in Intellectual Property Law.
Questions for Dan? Email law-admissions [at] luc [dot] edu and we can put you in touch.
To learn more about the Intellectual Property Law Program at Loyola University Chicago, click here.