Intellectual property issues produce important legal questions, from inventions to literary, musical, and other artistic works. Technology enables the creation and promotion of works beyond a local audience, yet it also gives rise to complicated problems like enforcing patents and intellectual property infringements.
This makes it an opportune time for law graduates or professionals looking to increase their expertise in a specific legal field to study intellectual property (IP). The University of New Hampshire School of Law is home to the Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property’s globally-renowned IP programme.
This certification is ideal for both American and international students. You’ll learn the fundamentals of obtaining, maintaining and enforcing patents and other forms of intellectual property, also exploring the differences between domestic and international regulations.
The school offers students an unparalleled education with small class sizes and on-the-job experience through legal residencies and clinics.
The Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property is a long-standing leader in IP law – it ranked sixth for IP law by US News & World Report and stands among the Top 10 in the country for nearly three decades. It was also ranked the #46 public university in the US by the US News & World Report and among the top 100 best colleges for your money in 2018.
Leveraging strong faculty expertise
As an IP student at UNH, you’ll have direct access to award-winning professors to help with your professional success.
This includes Professor Ann M. Bartow, a former Fulbright Scholar at the Tongji University in Shanghai, China, who leads the Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property. She is a past chair and current member of the American Association of Law Schools Executive Committee of the Defamation and Privacy Section.
Professor Tonya M. Evans is the author of an award-winning series of legal reference guides, a member of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Focus Group, and serves on the Intellectual Property Committee of the Advisory Council to the Court of Federal Claims.
UNH Law faculty also combine IP expertise and entrepreneurship. Professor John Orcutt has experience in investment banking practices in Silicon Valley and regularly provides training on projects in areas such as patent valuation globally. He and Professor William J. Murphy, who was also a Fulbright Scholar at the University College Cork in Ireland and is a former trial attorney for the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Competition, co-authored an article that applies novel valuation techniques to help solve a problem facing China’s patent subsidy officials.
Additionally, the school’s low student-to-fulltime faculty-ratio (6:1) offers plenty of opportunities for IP and master’s students to develop close professional relations with IP leaders.
Many of the intellectual property leaders around the world are graduates of this program. Dàmaso Pardo Correa, President of Argentina’s National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI), says: “The Franklin Pierce Center was exactly the kind of personalised education I was looking for. We engaged in personal interaction with our professors, which made it possible to understand how intellectual property works in the real world. There was also no lack of opportunities to discuss these matters in our spare time.” Heads of governmental IP offices in Taiwan and Nigeria are also graduates of Franklin Pierce.
Alumni include heads of intellectual property at companies like Microsoft, Bayer, Samsung, and Pepsi. Micky Minhas, Vice President and Chief Patent Counsel at Microsoft, Inc., completed a joint LL.M. and Juris Doctor (JD) programme.
“The accessibility of professors stands out,” said Minhas. “I was able to sit down with professors in informal settings to discuss aspects of a course, aspects of the law, or aspects of current events and their impact on the field of law. That level of accessibility was valuable and not prevalent in a lot of other institutions.”
Alumni who make strides in their fields
The programme has produced notable alumni who are making an impact in their respective industries.
“I fell into intellectual property in the early 90s when the internet was hot and there were early domain name issues. I was involved in a copyright infringement trial, and that led to more trademark cases and patent work. It was at a time when lawyers were claiming to be IP lawyers, but they didn’t really have the expertise,” said Joe Ferretti, Vice President and Chief Counsel, Global Trademarks at Pepsico.
Seeing a need for IP specialists, Ferretti decided to pursue the IP programme at UNH.
Meanwhile, Mahua Roy Chowdhury from India said the programme prepares students to step out and practise with confidence.
“I was referred by various sources, including the Dean of my college, sitting judges of the High Court and even an alumnus of Harvard Law School. I was told, that for Intellectual Property, Franklin Pierce (now UNH Law) is the best in the world,” said the managing partner at Royzz & Co.
Minhas, who is also a Franklin Pierce distinguished Professor of Intellectual Property Practice, claims that being associated with the university has benefitted him during his career.
“When I am working with other companies, being associated with the name Franklin Pierce gives me instant respect and credibility. I met a lot of people who remain close friends today, and frequently run into other Franklin Pierce and UNH Law alumni at professional events,” he said.
Dàmaso Pardo Correa said that his professor gave him an opportunity to work at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva.
“This was one of my first experiences working in a foreign country and it helped to shape my legal career; it allowed me to start building a legal network, both of which were essential for the many other experiences that would come my way,” he says.
If you’re keen to earn global credentials from a university that allows you to enjoy an array of experiential learning options, and join a global network of accomplished intellectual property professionals, UNH Law might just be the perfect fit for you.