When Kevin Jones walked into St. John's Law for his first evening program class, it was a homecoming of sorts. He had fallen in love with the campus as a teenager, while visiting his older brother who was a St. John's University undergraduate.
"When I started the law school application process, it quickly became clear that St. John's was the school for me," Jones recalls. Having amassed considerable professional experience as a sports journalist and marketer, he brought a clear perspective and sharp focus to his legal studies. "As a journalist, I saw just how important the protection of creative works can be to the creator's livelihood," Jones shares. "So when I got to St. John's Law, I knew I wanted to learn how to help others protect those rights."
In addition to taking courses in IP Law at St. John's, Jones gained valuable, hands-on experience this summer while working in the business affairs department of the Major League Baseball Commissioner's Office. "It's nearly impossible to articulate all the things I learned about IP law there," he says. "It was an experience like no other."
Each year, the NYIPLA selects one law school to receive this $10,000 scholarship. The law school then awards the scholarship to one of its students on its IP faculty's recommendation based on the following criteria: Expressed interest in pursuing a career in intellectual property law; status as a minority student who represents a group that has been traditionally underrepresented in the legal profession; and academic eligibility adhering to the law school's standard internal merit-based scholarship requirements.
This marks the fifth consecutive year that a St. John's Law student has received the award, and Jones is thrilled to be the 2016 recipient. "With this award, the NYIPLA and the scholarship selection committee recognize the lack of diversity in the legal profession," he says. "More than that though, they've decided to act as catalysts for change—change that I'm profoundly honored to be a part of as the recipient of this year's Hon. Giles S. Rich Diversity Scholarship."
Jones looks forward to taking the next steps on his IP Law career path. "Our society's creative minds are a major force in moving the world forward," he observes. "Their new and innovative ideas need to be safeguarded and I'm eager and excited to use my St. John's law degree to help provide that critical protection."