The [Name] Fellows Program Assists Individuals from Underrepresented Racial and Ethnic Groups Who Are Currently Enrolled at an ABA-Accredited Law School Interested in Exploring a Career in Either Patent Law or Another Field of Intellectual Property Law in the United States, Including Part-Time Law Students. The Fellows Program Is Open To Individuals Who Are Completing or Have Completed Either Their 1L or 2L Years of Law School. The Fellows Program is currently limited to applicants who are STEM-educated.
The Foundation for Advancement of Diversity in IP Law is currently seeking applicants for its Fellows Program. Applicants must be members of a racial or ethnic group underrepresented interested in exploring a career either in the patent law profession or in another field within the IP law profession. In addition, applicants must be completing or have completed either a 1L or 2L course of study at an ABA-accredited law school in the United States.
Applicants must complete and submit an online application to be considered for recognized as a Fellow. A clickable link to the application form is provided above. Fellow selections are made on a rolling basis during a calendar year, with the first selections during each year being made after March 1 and the final selections taking place on or shortly or shortly after August 1. Applicants may apply for recognition as a Fellow once law school transcripts are available for the applicant’s completed 1L course of study at an ABA-accredited law school. Applicants are encouraged to apply for Fellow recognition as soon after March 1 and the required transcript can be submitted as part of the application process. Completed applications must be filed before July 1 in order to be assured of receiving consideration before the final selections are made for any calendar year.
Fellows Program Overview – Fellowship, Mentoring, and Career-Readiness Assistance
The Fellows Program provides mentoring, career-preparation, and career-readiness assistance to individuals who have completed a 1L or 2L course of study at an ABA-accredited law school and who have an interest in exploring a possible career either in patent law or in another field of intellectual property law in the United States. Applicants seeking recognition as Fellows must identify as a member of a racial or ethnic group that is underrepresented in the field of intellectual property law.
Fellow Selection Criteria – Fellow Application Requirements
The following information must be provided by each applicant, as part of the application process, and will be considered by the Foundation in determining whether to recognize an applicant as a Fellow:
- Recognition as a Fellow is available to individuals who identify as members of one or more underrepresented racial or ethnic groups. Immediate family members of a trustee of the Foundation are ineligible to receive an award from the Foundation, e.g., a spouse, sibling, child, or grandchild.
- Applicants must exhibit a demonstrable commitment to exploring a career either in patent law or in another field of intellectual property law and provide a personal statement explaining the applicant’s interest in the IP law profession. The statement may include personal background information that an applicant wishes the Foundation to consider. Applicants may supplement the required personal statement with one or more letters of recommendation.
- Applicants must have completed a 1L course of study at an ABA-accredited law school and provide a current and complete law school transcript that evidences completion of at least a 1L course of study.
- Applicants must provide a resume that includes work experiences and sets out activities that reflect the applicant’s leadership skills, community activities, and other personal or professional accomplishments.
- Applicants must provide results of any LSAT/GRE (Law School Admissions Test or Graduate Record Examination) testing that was submitted by the applicant to a law school during the admissions process.
- Preference for selection as a Fellow may be given to applicants with demonstrated financial need or special family or financial circumstances. Applicants wishing to have financial need considered must include any relevant information in the required personal statement and may submit a current FAFSA as evidence of financial need.
- All 2022 Fellow applicants must be STEM-educated.
Fellow Application Form
To apply for recognition as a Fellow, the online application form must be completed using the link above to access the form. The required supporting documentation must be uploaded together with the submission of the online application form or must be provided separately via email, addressed to Apply@DiversityinIPLaw.org.
Fellow Selection Process
Once an application, together with all supporting documentation, has been accepted as complete by the Foundation, the applicant will be notified by email that the application is being evaluated. Applicants who are found qualified for recognition as a Fellow may be asked to participate in an interview with one or more representatives of the Foundation prior to a final selection. The Foundation reimburses applicants for travel costs associated with any in-person interview. Selection as a Fellow is based on (1) the applicant’s demonstrated interest in exploring a career in either in patent law or another field of intellectual property law, (2) relevant personal circumstances, and (3) prior academic and non-academic achievements indicative of a high likelihood of success in a career in intellectual property law, should such a career be pursued.
Applicants selected for recognition as Fellows are notified once the selection decision is made. The selection process is conducted on a rolling basis between March and August each year, as completed applications are received. Initial selections are made after March 1 each year and the final selection each year is made on or shortly after August 1. To be assured consideration for selection during a calendar year, completed applications must be made before July 1.
Following initial recognition as a Fellow, the Fellow remains eligible to continue participation in the Fellows Program during the Fellow’s 2L and 3L years of law school by demonstrating (1) satisfactory academic performance (a “B” average in law school or equivalent achievement may be required) and (3) a continued demonstrable interest in pursuing a possible career in a field of intellectual property law.
Fellow Career-Preparation and Career-Readiness Assistance
Once an individual is accepted as a Fellow, the Fellow immediately qualifies for the following future assistance and support:
- The Foundation, through its partnership with nationally prominent law firms and corporations, provides each Fellow with a mentor engaged in a relevant field of intellectual property law, who will provide counseling and advice with respect to law school study and IP law career preparation.
- Student membership dues in the ABA IPL Section and AIPLA.
- Grant awards for travel and attendance costs at one or both of the Annual Meeting of the ABA IPL Section (April) or the Annual Meeting of the AIPLA (October). Total grant awards for attendance costs is capped for each Fellow at $3000 for each year during which the Fellow remains in the program.
- For a STEM-educated Fellow interested in exploring a career in patent law, all costs associated with the online patent bar review course of the Practising Law Institute and grant awards to cover all costs arising from registration-related fees for the United States Patent and Trademark Office Patent Bar Examination (g., USPTO Application Fee, USPTO Registration Examination Fee, Prometric Service Fee, and Bar Registration fee).
- Stipends of up to $5,000 to cover living expenses for Fellows who accept pro bono IP law internships through entities approved by the Foundation. This includes patent-focused internships provided by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
- Counseling and advising with respect to intellectual property law clerkships available to students who are completing a 2L year in law school.
- Grant awards for the travel costs for participating in the Loyola University (Chicago) School of Law’s Patent Law Interview Program for rising 3L Scholars interested in exploring a career in patent law.
- Counseling and advising with respect to post-J.D. employment opportunities for law school graduates interested in commencing a career in IP law.
- Access to any listing of employment opportunities for recent law school graduates made available from the law firm and corporate partners of the Foundation.
Following law school graduation, a Fellow is entitled to:
- Permanent recognition as a Fellow, including recognition on the Foundation’s website.
- Access to any listing of employment opportunities for law school graduates made available from the law firm and corporate partners of the Foundation.
Administration of Grant Awards to Fellows
All grant awards accrued by a Fellow will be dispensed once yearly by the Foundation, typically in August or September of each year. To the extent grant amounts are determined based on a Fellow’s out-of-pocket expenses, awards may be conditioned on the submission of appropriate documentation of such expenses. The Foundation may elect to administer any grant awards in the form of a once-yearly award paid directly to and administered by the Fellow’s law school. When the Foundation so elects to administer any grant award as a once-yearly award paid to the Fellow’s law school, the award is applied to the verifiable costs associated with normal tuition and usual fees relating to full time or part-time enrollment status (such as, but not limited to, student activity fees, law school or university fees, administrative fees) and is administered through the law school the Fellow is attending, in accordance with the policies of the school for the use and application of scholarship funds. For grant awards that are not received in the form of a law school tuition grant, the Foundation will make the awards directly to the Fellow. Upon request, a Fellow may receive a grant award as an advance for a qualifying expense that can be dispensed directly to the Fellow or the Foundation may elect to make payment for any qualifying expense directly to a vendor or supplier.
Changes to the Fellows Program
The Foundation reserves the right at any time, and in its sole discretion, to modify, add to, or eliminate one or more of the then existing terms and conditions of its Fellows Program, including any of the benefits for Fellows as described above. Any such changes shall be effective as of the date notice is provided to Fellows except to the extent the notice otherwise specifies. Publication on the Foundation’s website of any Fellows Program changes shall constitute notice to the Fellows.