Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

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Which firm for IP lit in 2L summer? (ignoring location)

Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox
2
8%
Kenyon & Kenyon
4
17%
Fish & Richardson
18
75%
 
Total votes: 24

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Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:40 pm

I could really use some help in deciding where to get IP experience my 2L summer. I'm leaning heavily towards IP lit and also have an interest in trademarks. I have a life sciences background but no advanced degree or related work experience.

The offices would be: DC for Sterne Kessler, NY for Kenyon & Kenyon, and DC for Fish & Richardson. I put ignore location in the poll because I have significant ties in both cities and just plan to dominate Amtrack's frequent rider program. I'd be happy with either market. Some of the things I care about in rough order of importance:

1. Job security - meaning both full-time offer after 2L summer and as a junior associate
2. Interesting work/clients - prefer life sciences industry
3. Ability to gain litigation experience
4. Quality of life
5. Friendly, less formal office
6. Exit options, preferably in-house but who knows

I'd also appreciate any comments about these firms. Thanks in advance!

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:01 pm

I voted Fish.

Fish would be a no-brainer here if job security and life sciences were not a concern. Fish's DC office is phenomenal and will give the best experience and exit options of the firms on your list. I got the impression that the Fish attorneys would be much easier to work with than the ones at Sterne Kessler.

On the job security front, Fish does have layoffs in its past. I get the impression that the amount of work going into the DC office is subsidizing the rest of the firm. With the decentralized nature of Fish's decision making process, you can't be confident that Fish won't decide to lay off associates in DC because the other offices aren't pulling in work. That said, Fish seems to be hiring very few summer associates these days. They might be scaling back to avoid layoffs if they hit another rough patch in the future. I highly doubt they could "overhire" if they only hire 1 or 2 SAs in the DC office.

Also, Fish's DC office has a very high-tech focus. If you really want to work in life sciences, might want to look elsewhere (I think WilmerHale, Finnegan, Rothwell Figg, Kirkland, and Kilpatrick are the big pharmaceutical shops in DC)

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:15 pm

(OP) Thanks for the info on Fish. The high tech focus in DC generally is something I'm worried about. If the firm starts to make cuts I have a feeling the life sciences person with zero work experience would be the first to go...

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:41 pm

Voted for Fish, but a bit torn about it. Sterne would be a great place to land with that life sciences background, though I doubt that it's a very fun place to work. And I worry about the offer rate at these places.

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 10:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:(OP) Thanks for the info on Fish. The high tech focus in DC generally is something I'm worried about. If the firm starts to make cuts I have a feeling the life sciences person with zero work experience would be the first to go...


I can tell you that most offices' hiring goals for next year were hi-tech with biotech as backups. I would be concerned with going to an office focused on a certain sector while you are of a different background. I did the exact same thing at Fish and did not think it was a very positive experience.

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 10:11 pm

Don't mean to hijack, but what do people think about Irell vs. Ropes NY for IP lit?

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 18, 2012 11:18 pm

(OP) Thanks for all the comments. I know that both Kenyon and Sterne Kessler offered 100% of their 2Ls at the end of the summer. Kenyon is also hiring lots of laterals and Sterne hired an additional 8 people for its first year associate class. Unsure about Fish since DC is such a small office. I might be leaning towards Kenyon right now. The large majority of Sterne's class was either PhD in biotech/chemistry or masters in engineering. I think Kenyon has lots of biotech/chemistry PhDs too but they're probably busier with litigation...

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:13 am

I would go with Fish if you are into litigation. Fish has been involved in more high profile litigation cases than Kenyon.

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:17 am

Anonymous User wrote:I would go with Fish if you are into litigation. Fish has been involved in more high profile litigation cases than Kenyon.


It means nothing if you are the only bio person in an office handling high profile hi tech cases. Even if you get staffed on the same case, I am not sure you get to do the critical stuff. You may get staffed cross offices on bio cases but I am not sure that's the kind of experience you are looking for.

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:48 am

(OP) I decided Fish is out of the running for me. Now between Sterne (which appears to be growing its litigation group) and Kenyon...

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 19, 2012 10:56 am

Anonymous User wrote:(OP) I decided Fish is out of the running for me. Now between Sterne (which appears to be growing its litigation group) and Kenyon...


Wow. What made you decide against Fish? The polls indicate a strong direction...

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Re: Which IP Firm for 2L IP Lit Summer?

Postby sky7 » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:14 am

Yeah - I have to concur - passing up Fish is pretty brave.

At least in the circles I travel in, Fish is pretty much the gold standard in both lit and pros.




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