Law Student Patent & Licensing Clinic

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Robert J. Decker
Senior Patent & General Counsel
U.Va. Licensing & Ventures Group

Rodney L. Sparks
Senior Biotechnology Patent Counsel
U.Va. Licensing & Ventures Group


The U.Va. Licensing & Ventures Group hosts a patent and licensing clinic offered by the U.Va. School of Law. Each semester, approximately 15 enrolled law students spend six to eight hours per week at the Licensing & Ventures Group immersed in patent drafting and the negotiation and drafting of patent license agreements. Students are taught how to evaluate inventions and computer software for patentability and commercial value; counsel inventors regarding patentability; determine inventorship; and prepare, file and prosecute provisional U.S. and international patent applications. Approximately 150 students have benefited from the Patent and Licensing Clinic since its inception.

This clinic is a course offered for credit each fall and spring semester through the U.Va. School of Law (prerequisite or concurrent enrollment: Patent I). Students enrolled will participate in class sessions covering the aforementioned topics and will be assigned to one or more significant drafting and counseling projects. Several class sessions will be scheduled early in the semester at a mutually convenient time for the limited number of students in the program, and students will work at the U.Va. Licensing & Ventures Group office location.

For more information about the Law Student Patent and Licensing Clinic, contact Rob Decker at or 434-924-2640 or Rodney Sparks at or 434-243-6103.