Saiful Khan


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“I’d studied engineering for my undergraduate studies and was fortunate enough to be sponsored by an oil company. This meant I got some valuable hands-on work experience early on which helped me realise that, whilst a practical engineering career might be right for some, I wasn’t sure that it was going to suit me in the long run. I also knew I wasn’t ready to give up my academic interest in technology so I went on to start a doctoral programme in materials science, which was also industry focussed.

Towards the end of this research, I began to think about what to do next. I considered engineering, academia and management consultancy as viable options but my father mentioned the area of intellectual property and specifically the job of a patent attorney, neither of which I had come across before. The very week of that conversation, I noticed an advert by a patent attorney firm in the university vacancy sheets. I applied, as much to find out about this new area as to start down the road of seeking a career path that might suit me.

Although there was only so much I could learn from the job interview process, I soon realised that not only did I like the people I met (and didn’t feel out of place amongst them) but also that the job would sustain my academic interest in how things worked, not be focussed on limited areas of technology, maintain my industry focus, value my English language ability, and still also allow me to have a structured career path involving exams (something I had previously been good at). I took a chance, decided to give it a go, and haven’t looked back since!”

Patent Attorney / Potter Clarkson LLP / Nottingham

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