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   patent examiners in law school?
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   Author  Topic: patent examiners in law school?  (Read 7363 times)
eliza
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patent examiners in law school?
« on: Mar 18th, 2006, 12:13pm »
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Does anyone know if working as a patent examiner increases one's chances of getting admitted into law school (part-time, evening program in DC area)?
 
Also, do a lot of examiners take advantage of the PTO's law school tuition reimbursement program? If so, are the examiners pretty much competing with each other for the available slots in the evening program? As a result, do many examiners get rejected?
 
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Re: patent examiners in law school?
« Reply #1 on: Mar 18th, 2006, 2:23pm »
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I know a lot of people working at the PTO and going to law school, and a lot of people i work with are planning to go at some point in the future. Many sooner than later. Right now i think 10 people in the part time program at American are PTO employees (that would be more than 10% of the class - you can check their webpage for details), and i imagine that number will sharply increase. The averages for the part-time programs in the area already have.
 
I'm not sure how many are taking advantage of the law school program. Lots of people that i know haven't been there long enough (2 yrs). In terms of them competing for slots, i don't see how it can be otherwise. Everyone competes against everyone else for limited slots in LS, assuming there are more applicants than seats available.
 
Bringing 1000 new people to the area per year (which the PTO is doing) and forcing them to choose from a limited pool of schools in a geographical area, i don't see how it can't raise admissions standards. And i see it getting MUCH worse.
 
And as to whether working at the PTO increases ones chances of admission to LS, i'm sure holding a job does over someone straight from undergrad, but if there is a flood of applicants with the same work experience then how can it help that pool at all unless there is something else to distinguish a particular applicant over that pool. Something outside of their PTO experience or better grades/LSAT, etc. I have many thoughts on this subject and could go on and on, but i've probably gone on too long!
 
Good luck.
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Eliz
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Re: patent examiners in law school?
« Reply #2 on: Mar 21st, 2006, 8:44am »
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on Mar 18th, 2006, 12:13pm, eliza wrote:
Does anyone know if working as a patent examiner increases one's chances of getting admitted into law school (part-time, evening program in DC area)?
 

 
I don't know specifically, but I would guess that the answer is no, or that if it helps, it does so to a minimal extent.  The fact that you work at the PTO has no effect on the law school's UNSWR ranking.  Law schools vary in how much they value work experience, but in general, LSAT and your undergrad GPA will matter most, because this is what affects the school's ranking.  
 
I was a bit naive about how much numbers matter in law school admissions when I applied--my advice would be to focus on getting the best LSAT score you can (and if you are still in undergrad, make sure you keep your GPA high).  
Good luck!
Eliz
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SciGuy
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Re: patent examiners in law school?
« Reply #3 on: Mar 21st, 2006, 9:03am »
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My guess is that being an examiner qualifies as "experience."  So, just like other factors the fall under "experience" (i.e. graduate degrees, work experience, etc), if your GPA and LSAT numbers are borderline then experience can get you accepted.  In other words, it won't get you in but it might help if your application is otherwise pretty close.
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eliza
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Re: patent examiners in law school?
« Reply #4 on: Mar 24th, 2006, 8:04pm »
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Thanks to all for replying!
 
I have some tax related questions regarding the tuition reimbursement program.
 
I know the PTO pays 100% of the tuition costs each semester by adding the money to your regular paycheck.  If so, I'm assuming taxes are withheld.  Then the tuition money received is considered "income," right? For example, an examiner making 60K would be taxed as though they're making 80K (if tuition is 20K)?  
 
So, in reality, is the examiner really receiving two-thirds of the tuition money and funding a third themselves?
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