My PhD was a great experience. I enjoyed thinking about biology every day and found the potential for discovering new things exciting. However, progression in research projects can be slow and uncertain and I was unsure whether spending years on one project was for me long-term. For these reasons, I decided to leave research after my PhD and instead applied for Trainee Patent Attorney positions. In April 2019, I started working at D Young & Co and two years on, I am very happy with the choice I made.
Why I chose this profession
During my PhD, I attended a talk given by a patent attorney explaining the importance of patents in protecting new inventions. I was drawn to the idea of helping companies and scientists move forwards with the new products and processes they have created, which often will have spent many years in development. I felt excited to have found a job that allowed me to use my technical expertise in biology and provided an opportunity to learn about a range of different biotechnologies, at the forefront of innovation.
What attracted me to D Young & Co
D Young & Co is a top-tier firm and therefore I knew I would be gaining experience with excellent attorneys that provide a high quality service. To complement the on-the-job training, the firm also helps trainees through exams by offering tutorials and revision courses.
When I then attended my interview, I was confident that I would be joining a supportive team, since everyone I met seemed friendly and approachable. I was especially appreciative of this over the pandemic, when we all moved to working from home. The on-the-job training continued much as before, with qualified attorneys regularly sacrificing their time to give me detailed feedback on my work. I have regular meetings with my team and feel my wellbeing, as well as my training, is considered important.
Advice for those entering the profession
I expected there to be a learning curve when I joined the profession, but I did not anticipate for how long I would still be encountering new tasks, coming across new areas of law and generally feeling inexperienced.
Therefore, I would advise anyone thinking of entering the profession to be ready for a steep learning curve that will last for years and to make sure you choose a firm where you feel comfortable and where your development will be supported.