“Confession: I come into work each day looking forward to the challenges that I will face – not many people can say that!
I have a science background, but my senior schools were fairly traditional and didn’t offer technology subjects, so I had planned on following my father into medicine. I eventually chose a Computer Science BSc degree, sponsored by a large, multinational tech firm, where I juggled studies with working on technical projects at the firm.
I first came across IP in a degree option and by chance, towards the end of my final year, got a call from the firm’s in-house IP law department, telling me that they had a trainee position going. I’m so glad that I said “yes” to a friendly meet and greet! Once I graduated, I started on-the-job training and around five further years of gaining dual qualifications in European and UK IP Law.
I’m not going to lie, it was tough going, but the rewards are there – great salary/benefits packages and a structured career path. It’s an honour to work for a firm where IP underpins everything that they do – I help protect IP as well as monetize IP through deals, licensing, collaborations etc.
I work full time and now have two young kids so, balancing work and life is always a challenge. I use a number of childcare options and am lucky to have flexibility at work to make up hours if needed. I’m also getting stricter with myself to ensure that I focus on my kids (and myself!) during downtime. Overall, I think I mostly get the balance right!
Being a patent attorney seems to be the perfect job for me – a stimulating combination of technology, legal and commercial issues…best of luck in whatever you choose to do!”
Patent Attorney / IBM / Winchester