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Local high school students set to receive second utility patent – Reflections on the value of an MIT education

Oct 2, 2019

It’s been quiet on the website, but things are really popping at the office. I’ve got 4 patents coming in October 15: three design patents for illuminated motorcycle engine guards and a utility patent for twist-free cling wrap. This is the second utility patent for my clients, a pair of local high school students. You may remember their three-part ice cream cone from last year. They spend a lot of time tinkering in their kitchen! They have a third patent allowed and issuing later this year. Imagine graduating from high school with not one, but three, patents to your name.

More trademarks issued, others approved and on track to issue. Copyrights registered. I’m fighting for others to register. There are so many interesting inventions coming across my desk, and in fields I never thought people were still creating in: passive nuclear reactor containment systems, weapons, automotive repair. Every day brings something new and different.

Speaking of invention, last week, I returned to MIT for the Alumni Leadership Conference. The place where the Internet and the Human Genome Project were born continues to push the envelope. They are creating a new interdisciplinary School of Computing, recognizing how artificial intelligence touches and influences every field of study. I made new personal connections, rekindled and deepened other ones.

You may remember my post last year thanking local patent attorney Alex for taking me under his wing. When I first opened my practice, I had no professional contacts. I went to the only resource I knew, the MIT directory. I searched for Chicago area patent attorneys. Alex was one of two who responded to me. He took time out of his schedule to meet with me and gave me a spare MPEP. He has been there to answer practice questions and invite me to continuing legal education opportunities. Alex has even referred clients to me. The Institute formally recognized Alex for his service to alumni. He told me modestly “they think I’m a great guy.” I can vouch for that, and that the degree has paid for itself in ways I could not have imagined 29 years ago.

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