IP & Innovation

Student Opportunities

Two students talking at a table

At NYU Law, students are encouraged to take advantage of all the Law School has to offer, from working directly with faculty on their research, to getting involved with our centers, to participating in clinics and student organizations. In particular, students should explore the offerings of the Engelberg Center for Innovation Law & Policy and the Information Law Institute (ILI). Both of these centers host conferences and other events that may interest students and provide various other professional and research opportunities. Here are some additional opportunities for those specifically interested in IP and innovation law:

For Current Students

Summer Associate Positions

Students interested in litigation or transactional work involving intellectual property or information law should consider seeking a summer associate position at a law firm after their second year of law school. Large law firms may have a group that specializes in the student’s area of interest. Smaller “boutique” firms may specialize only in the student’s area of interest. A comparison of multiple “top firm” lists available online in various intellectual property areas will usually yield a reasonably reliable list of firms which the student should research.

Summer Public Interest Positions

Students interested in litigation or policy issues involving intellectual property or information law should consider seeking a summer position with one of the numerous public interest organizations in the field, such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology, the ACLU, or Public Knowledge.

For 3Ls and Recent Graduates


The Information Law Institute Research Fellowship offers fellows the time to progress in their own research, contribute to collaborative projects, and plan ILI events.

Master of Laws

The LLM in Competition, Innovation, and Information Law combines state-of-the-art policy and technical expertise with sophisticated legal analysis to create its unique approach to training students by developing an integrated understanding of the dynamic forces that shape contemporary economic activity and innovation. The International Finance and Development Fellowship Program provides a select number of LLM graduates with funding from the Law School to pursue a short-term fellowship at an international organization, such as the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Judicial Clerkships

Students are very strongly encouraged to pursue a federal clerkship either at the district or appellate court level. The bulk of intellectual property litigation occurs in the Second, Ninth, and Seventh Circuits and in the Federal Circuit (and, at the district level, in the SDNY, ND Cal., CD Cal., ND Ill., and ED Tex.), but clerkships in other venues will also likely involve intellectual property matters. Students with an interest in patent law may wish to place a priority on seeking a clerkship at the Federal Circuit.

The Patent Bar Exam

Students with the necessary science or engineering background are strongly encouraged to take the Patent Bar Exam, officially known as the “Examination for Registration to Practice in Patent Cases Before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.” Even if the student does not intend to prosecute patents before the USPTO, admission to the Patent Bar is a strong signal to potential employers of the student’s commitment to and proficiency in patent-related matters.

Other Opportunities

The NYU Law Venture Fund, formed to empower student and alumni entrepreneurs, offers three types of support to the NYU Law community: 

Venture Fund number one
Summer Grants. NYU Law students in the early stages of development can apply for $15,000 grants to help support them while they work on their business concept. 
Venture Fund number two
NYU Summer Launchpad Program. This nine-week accelerator program is ideal for those who are almost ready to bring their company to market. Part of the University's  Leslie eLab, the Launchpad Program help prepares teams with one member currently at NYU to launch their business after graduation. 
Venture Fund number three
Seed-Stage Investments. In the 2019-20 academic year, seed stage funding will be available to startups founded by NYU Law students or alumni who have graduated within the last 10 years.