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SCU law school- first in West to offer master's degree in Intellectual Property Law

Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2001

SANTA CLARA, Calif.-August 14, 2001-Santa Clara University's School of Law today launched the High Tech Law Institute which includes a new master's degree program in intellectual property law.

The institute is designed to promote and advance the study and development of intellectual property law and related laws and policies as applied to existing and emerging technologies.

Built on a quarter-century of intellectual property and technology law focus at SCU's law school, the institute offers more than 40 technology law courses per year, including courses in core intellectual property, corporate, international, computer/Internet/communications, and life sciences law. Courses include both traditional academic courses and skills-based seminars.

Since 1998, SCU has seen high tech law interest rise 12 percent among its first-year law school applicants. For the 2001-2002 academic year, 47 percent of enrolled first-year SCU law students have high tech law interest.

SCU's new LL.M in intellectual property law is the only one of its kind on the West Coast. The program is for attorneys seeking advanced studies in intellectual property law. To accommodate the working attorney, courses are offered on Saturdays and evenings starting August 20- the first day of fall quarter for the law school.

The institute will continue to offer graduating law students certificates of specialization in high tech law, a program that has been in place since 1995. Three versions of the High Tech Law Certificate currently are offered include Intellectual Property Law, Corporate Transactions, and International High Tech Law.

Fourteen full-time law school faculty members and several visiting professors from around the world will teach courses ranging from Patent Law to

Guiding the institute is Academic Director Donald S. Chisum and Executive Director Elizabeth Powers. Chisum, who holds the Inez Mabie endowed chair, is an SCU law professor and author of the definitive treatise on patent law. Powers, assistant dean for law and technology, is a former patent attorney at Bayer Corporation in Berkeley. She is an SCU alumna who earned a bachelor's degree in combined science and MBA from the University.

"The School of Law has been teaching intellectual property law for 25 years, so offering this graduate program was the next logical step toward achieving an outstanding, complete curriculum in intellectual property law," said Dean Powers. "We are positioning the institute to be the biggest and best in the country."

The institute is committed to bringing high tech law students and Silicon Valley innovators together through conferences, seminars, and invited speaker events such as "Founders in the Spotlight"- a speaker series specifically designed for University law, business, and engineering students, and faculty in which founders of Silicon Valley companies are invited to share their start-up insights. The series is sponsored by Start-Up Law Group-a student group, and the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The institute will also provide forums and publications allowing members of the legal, business, and technology sectors of the community to access research ideas and results generated by the institute.

At the end of August, the institute will launch its re-designed site at Until then, information can be found by visiting

To obtain a print-ready photo of Elizabeth Powers, contact SCU Photographer Charles Barry at, or Kelly Shenefiel in Media Relations at

About Santa Clara University School of Law
The SCU School of Law, founded in 1912, combines a tradition of excellence with a commitment to ethics, diversity, and social justice, and is fully accredited by the American Bar Association. Its students work in criminal and civil community law clinics, and may earn certificates in intellectual property law, international law or public interest law, and LL.M degrees in intellectual property law and international law. For more information, visit

About Santa Clara University
Santa Clara University has been serving the needs of the region and the nation since 1851. The private, Jesuit university enrolls approximately 7,500 students, more than 3,000 of whom are in its graduate and professional Schools. Its undergraduate program is highly ranked and singled out for quality. Santa Clara University School of Law is ranked nationally for its student body diversity. For the past several years, the intellectual property law program has been ranked among the top 10 nationwide. For more information, visit

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