First Person Accounts (FPA’s) are meant to provide a first-hand account of Indian graduates who have pursued, or are pursuing, a post-graduate course (LL.M. or otherwise) from different universities across the world.
Poroma Banerjee is currently a Trademark Expert at a German pharmaceutical company in Munich. A graduate of Calcutta University (’12), Poroma worked for a few years before enrolling for the Intellectual Property and Competition Law LL.M. at the Munich Intellectual Property Law Center (’16).
In this FPA, she discusses her experience at the MIPLC, finding employment in Germany, and how prospective applicants can shape their LL.M. applications.
You worked for a few years before the master’s. As a professional in India, what got you thinking about a master’s course?
Yes I worked as an IP attorney for two and a half years at a veteran lP law firm. In those years I learned almost everything related to Indian Trademark law which included preparing filing, prosecution, recording of change of address or name, opposition, rectification, co-existence letters, search opinions and litigation.
I always wanted to complete a post graduation degree. Having gained an overall practical experience as an IP attorney I felt comfortable to leave my well-paid job for further studies.
How did you go about selecting just where to apply, and what got you to narrow down on the Munich IP Law Centre?
The objectives for pursuing the course were receiving avant-garde IP knowledge and take home an excellent network of IP professionals. I searched online and then asked few senior IP professionals about universities providing masters course focused on international intellectual property law. A senior at the Indian law firm recommended Munich Intellectual Property Law Centre (MIPLC).
After comparing the course offered by MIPLC with courses offered by other Institutes, I found out it was the only institution that offered a masters course in Intellectual Property Law that includes both European and US Law. Further, it gave the opportunity to apply for internships in leading International IP organisations, European Law firms, Multi-National Companies which seemed like a stepping stone for getting international exposure.
“The MIPLC was the only institution that offered a masters course in Intellectual Property Law that includes both European and US Law.”
For scholars, it also gave the option to apply for doctoral. Finally, the Alumni looked ridiculously fantastic to me. I wanted to become a deserving alumnus of MIPLC.
Any advice on how to go about the admissions process?
It is relatively easier if you have a professional experience of two years as an engineer or in any technical field or as a lawyer specialised in Intellectual Property law. Like any other application for post-graduation the statement of purpose/letter of motivation counts a lot.
Besides that the MIPLC administrators are always glad to reply back to potential candidates. Incase I left out any important information, interested candidates may take a look here.
Did you apply for/receive financial aid?
No, I didn’t as I had made the decision of joining the course after the deadline to apply for scholarships. However, the MIPLC website has details regarding the available options for financial aid.
Looking back, what were some of the most valuable aspects of the LLM program? In what ways do you think the Munich IP Law Centre is different from other institutions?
The valuable aspects of the LLM Program are as follows:
- You learn to integrate and work together with professionals from all over the world which helps you make the most of its ever growing global Alumni in future.
- You learn to make the most of every opportunity that interests you. The varied range of offered internships have the potential of turning into full time jobs or be the stepping stone for future employments in Europe.
- If you join as a scholar you learn from lawyers, if you join as a lawyer you learn from scholars. After the completion of the course you will be wired to think differently and get involved in business approached that include innovation.
“If you join as a scholar you learn from lawyers, if you join as a lawyer you learn from scholars.”
Besides, offering the aforesaid, MIPLC is located in Munich, the hub of IP. Further, the LLM candidates have access to a much coveted library of Maxplanck Institute as well as access to many other legal databases, financial assistance and access to Phd. programmes.
Can you tell us a bit about how you went about finding employment after the course? And what is your reading of the employment opportunities available to international LLM graduates in Germany?
Currently I am working as a trademark expert at an International Pharmaceutical Company located in Munich, Germany. Before that I had an excellent track record working as a European Trademark Associate responsible for legal drafting of EUTM oppositions, cancellation, appeals and search opinions at Best Attorneys, Frankfurt, Germany.
Besides that in co-operation with Best Attorneys and a senior Indian Counsel, Mr. Somnath Banerjee, I developed an Indian desk that works from Frankfurt and Calcutta. These two aforesaid professional opportunities was possible for the internship offered by MIPLC at a global pharmaceutical company located in Marburg, Germany.
I have always remained very positive and made the most of every opportunity that came my way. It is absolutely crucial to select the right path being true to ones own ability. The chances of employment opportunities for International students are moderately high if you know how to spot your opportunity.
“The chances of employment opportunities for International students are moderately high if you know how to spot your opportunity.”
Finally, if you want to work in Germany learn the language as much as possible before you arrive for the course. That will definitely boost your job applications abroad.
Lastly, any advice for the Indian law grad who is considering a master’s abroad?
It is a fantastic opportunity to learn about the world and IP law. Like one of my mentors had once said ‘You must find your place in this world’. If you want to pursue masters then you definitely should. Subsequently, you will know what new roads you could open up for yourself.
If you would like Amicus Partners to provide some personalised advice on your LLM applications, please fill in this form and we shall get back to you as soon as possible.