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The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced a two-year pilot program to expose law students to patent or trademark law. The patent office plans to choose between three to five law schools for the pilot. The students involved can choose the patent or trademark track. Students opting for the patent track will either draft and file a patent application, draft and file a response to a patent office action, or draft and file a brief for a Board of Patent Appeals case. Student in the trademark track will either draft and file a trademark application, respond to a patent office action, or draft and file a brief for the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. The patent office believes the program will help law students better grasp the patent office’s role in the global intellectual property system, said Jon Dudas, director of the patent office and Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property “We hope the experience will inspire these students to pursue careers in IP law — perhaps even here at the USPTO,” Dudas said. The patent office is accepting law school applications through May 30. It expects to make a decision by July 9.

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