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Re: alternative career in the field of technology transfer

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2004 4:19 pm
by Kenneth
I am a post-doctoral fellow doing cancer research at National Cancer Institute in Bethesda. Instead of the traditional career path, I would like to pursue an alternative possibility in the field of technology transfer (either as a licensing specialist or patent examiner).

There is a fellowship program in NIH where trainees can get exposure and training in the the technology transfer process. However, there will not be any new opening in year 2005!

Could anyone suggest me some ways how I can get in the field of technology transfer elsewhere?

Re: alternative career in the field of technology transfer

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2004 6:05 pm
by Dave Jensen
Hi Kenneth,

We have a good friend and frequent poster who may join in with his advice, which should be listened to. I hope he's reading.

Yes, an NIH fellowship in that field would be great, but it isn't necessary. Technology transfer is critical to the university-industry interface, and to building biotech cluster regions in general. So, there is a lot of attention being paid to developing the university tech transfer office right now. You ought to check into the various schools in your area, and find out if they are open to your inquiries. Ask the people you talk with, their "associate" level people how they got involved, and what their career track was to get that job. Also, there's a group called the Association of University Technology Managers, AUTM, that is having a big meeting here in Phoenix in February. Do they need help? Perhaps you can get a free ticket for the attendance if you can volunteer your services to help speakers in meeting rooms, etc. Many Postdocs and graduate students do this volunteer work at meetings like BIO and others, and make great contacts. You'd still have to pay your way out to beautiful and sunny Phoenix however. See AUTM at this website .

I'll keep my eyes on this thread and contribute again if our friend doesn't spot it and reply personally,

Dave Jensen, Moderator

Re: alternative career in the field of technology transfer

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2004 9:45 pm
by Chris Buntel
AUTM is a great organization, and their yearly meetings are fun networking and educational opportunities. There is a discounted $185 student registration. They also have regional meetings that you might attend - check their website.

Talk to tech transfer people at your institute, or at your graduate or undergrad school. Try to learn more about what they do, and how they got started. University tech transfer is very business oriented -- converting research into licenses and royalties.

Being a patent examiner is completely different from university tech transfer. Examiners make sure that good applications issue as patents (and that ones that fail one or more requirements do not). The USPTO provides great training, and examiners are very marketable. The USPTO is only in DC, but I notice that you're in Maryland already.

Good luck! Chris Buntel.