CNN Money recently compiled a list of “Best Jobs in America,” using data based on worker experience, pay scale, and job growth potential. The role of patent agent rated number four on the top of the list of one hundred jobs.
Patent agents have a background in science and engineering and work with inventors, researchers, and attorneys to evaluate inventions, draft patent applications, and respond to actions taken by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
A career in patent law has a great potential for growth, high pay, and job satisfaction. On CNN Money’s A-F scale, patent agent scored A’s in all the three main categories: personal satisfaction, benefit to society, and low stress. Highlighted in CNN Money’s description is the fact that patent agents deal consistently with a vast variety of new, interesting inventions and ideas. Thus, patent agents report back a great level of satisfaction and interest in their changing work.
Notre Dame offers a one year master’s degree in Patent Law for students with a background in Science who wish to pursue careers as patent agents. These courses, whether taken on campus or online, give graduates the information necessary to pass the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) bar exam and become patent agents.
Karen Deak, director of the Master of Science in Patent Law, says of the career, “A patent agent helps inventors get patents to protect their ideas. Being a patent agent is a great job, because patent agents get to learn about a variety of technologies and work with enthusiastic inventors who really care about the work that they're doing to make the world a better place.”
Despite America’s focus on new products and the increase in U.S. patent filings, the number of new patent practitioners has remained steady over the past five years. Thus, the field has many job opportunities for those wishing to seek a career within patent law.