University of Iowa
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Mark Edwards ( Class of 2011)

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Undergraduate school and major: Rochester Institute of Technology; Major: Computer Engineering

Current employer: Schwegman, Lundberg & Woessner, P.A.

Location: Minneapolis, MN

Job title: Patent Attorney

Description of what you do: Patent procurement in electrical, software, and computer technologies, with special focus in the areas communications, signal processing, and machine learning.  This includes working with inventors, engineers, scientist, and of professionals to develop patent applications for protecting their inventions.  With regard to billable activities, roughly 40% of my time includes activities associated with drafting applications, 60% includes activities associated with prosecuting patent applications through the USPTO (e.g., working with Patent Examiners to obtain allowance of the applications)

Your favorite part of your job: The constant learning that is involved, the constant exposure to new ideas.  As a patent attorney, with each new patent application, you are exposed to new technologies, new ideas, or a new way of solving a problem.  While many of these solutions are arguably evolutionary, an intrepid patent attorney, who takes full advantage of the many opportunities that avail themselves in this field, can count on occasionally coming across some truly revolutionary ideas.  Whether an idea presented for patent represents an incremental step that marginally inches a field of technology or a revolutionary change that completely turns the field on its head, all or each of these ideas provide a opportunities to learn something new.  For me, this is the prize.

Your interests outside of work: Indoors, I read or do light research on various subjects of personal interests, such as computer security, electronic communications, machine learning, and the legal policy developments concerning these subjects. Otherwise, I do the usual things outdoors, such as running, hiking, biking, and kayaking.

What is your favorite movie: Casablanca

What do you wish your 1L/2L/3L self knew about the job search: Put in the effort in Law School to make sure you are able to put your best foot forward, but know that the hard work you have done up to now has already opened the door for you.

Mark Edwards