Rui W. Geissler (LL.M.’05)
Of Counsel, Muncy, Geissler, Olds & Lowe, P.C. (MG-IP®)
LL.M. in General Studies
Master of Laws in Intellectual Property Law, Seikei University (2002)
Bachelor of Laws, University of International Business and Economics (1996)
What was your academic and/or professional background prior to attending Georgetown Law?
I worked at a law firm for two years in Beijing after graduating from college. Then I went to Tokyo for my master degree while working part-time at a Japanese Intellectual Property (‘IP’) firm. After graduation, I went back to the same firm in Beijing and joined their IP team.
How has your professional (or personal) experience been enhanced by your membership in the Georgetown Law alumni community?
Georgetown LL.M. program is definitely an outstanding program. The longer I am working in the U.S., the more I find myself benefiting from the legal knowledge obtained from Georgetown’s LL.M.program and Hoya spirit. Also, Georgetown alumni network is a strong community, wherever you go in the world, especially in Washington DC. In the meantime, being a member of such a great community is more about how much you can contribute to this community than how much you can take from Georgetown community. There is so much you can do out there as a Georgetown Alumni. The website of our Georgetown Alumni Association is a great start.
What is your advice for current and future Georgetown Law LL.M. students on how best to use their year at Georgetown?
One year at Georgetown is short, but tense and you need to work hard. Among all the great professors at school, the adjunct professors from the law firms are also a unique and valuable resource. Their lectures are full of frontline knowledge as they are practitioners in the field and have many years of experience. Also, build up your own professional network and meet as many people as you can at school and out of school. Don’t forget you are in D.C.! There are so many professional and cultural events almost every day in the city. Explore the beauty of the capital and embrace the diversity of culture here! For a foreign LL.M. student from Asia like myself, go to travel to other states and other countries nearby, if you can!
What are important traits for candidates seeking opportunities to practice in IP area in the U.S.? How could we enter into this area?
For students with a science degree, patent law will be a great choice. For students without such a technical background, I would suggest trademark, copyright, or IP litigation. You are in the IP epi-center, in particular with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Take advantage of it and make good use of student discounts of IP events in town! Through our strong alumni network, it is not difficult to find other alumni working in the IP field. Reach out to them in a professional way and keep your mind open!
- What is your advice on networking for current LL.M. students? Are there any typical mistakes we should avoid?
Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. BE CONFIDENT! After meeting people at the events, write a polite thank-you email to follow-up. It is simple but I realize that not every person would do it. Also keep your eye on emerging legal issues and other hot political, economic and cultural topics in the U.S., your home country and in the world. Then you will find out that it is not difficult to make a great and inspiring conversation with a stranger.
Interview conducted by Jiaxi Ye, Georgetown University Law Center, Master of Laws in General Studies Candidate, May 2016.