MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University College of Law student Caroline Leadmon is spending her summer working in two very different legal settings: a patent law firm and a federal judge’s chambers.
Leadmon, a rising 2L, is one of three WVU Law students opting for a “split summer” work experience in 2021. The others are Ryaan Ibtisam and Karli Celestin.
For eight weeks, Leadmon will be a summer associate for the firm Dority & Manning in Greenville, South Carolina. Then, she will return to the Mountain State to spend a month as an intern for Senior Judge Irene Keeley in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia in Clarksburg.
“I am interested in a career as a patent attorney because I have a technical background, and I am patent-bar eligible. I applied to Dority & Manning after reviewing the work they did with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies,” said Leadmon. “However, part of me wanted a more broad, comprehensive summer legal experience. I applied to intern with Judge Keeley after hearing from past interns what a great educational experience being in chambers provides. I am so grateful that both offices were flexible and allowed me to split my summer.”
Leadmon graduated from WVU in 2020 with a dual-degree in Biochemistry and Animal and Nutritional Sciences. After working and presenting internationally on a patented research project that used genetic engineering to alter compounds used in medications, she decided to come to law school.
Her split summer will expose her to two sides of the patent law process, first through hands-on experience working with intellectual property at Dority & Manning and then seeing how IP and patent issues are presented in federal court.
“I feel lucky to pursue a specialized interest in the law during my first summer while still being able to have a broader legal experience,” she said “I could not have secured these positions without the help and support of the Career Services Center at WVU Law and professors who helped review my application materials. The community at WVU Law truly fosters an environment that creates avenues to success for all students.”
Leadmon is from Hurricane, West Virginia, and was a Foundation Scholar at WVU. She was selected Ms. Mountaineer in 2019.
At WVU Law, Leadmon serves as the fundraising chair for the Class of 2023. In the fall, she will begin serving as fundraising chair for Student Bar Association. She is also a member of Women's Leadership Council.
Outside of law school, Leadmon is an instructor for the first-year seminar at WVU’s Davis College of Design and Agriculture. In her spare time, she coaches ice skating and she runs the only youth synchronized skating team in West Virginia.