David Glass

When it came to his future, David Glass, JD ’24, trusted his gut. After earning an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from Clarkson University, the recent UNH Franklin Pierce graduate spent four years working at a semiconductor manufacturing company before he committed to changing course.

A couple of years into it, I realized engineering was not really something I wanted to do for the next 40 years,” Glass recalls. “I talked with quite a few people and eventually learned that I could be a lawyer, which would enable me to have some unique opportunities. I landed on the law and that was the perfect mixture of being intellectually stimulating and something I was excited about. At the time that was a guess, and luckily I was right.”

Like many of his classmates, Glass was drawn to UNH Franklin Pierce because of the opportunity to focus on intellectual property law. As an engineer, he realized he was not the one coming up with the ideas that needed protecting. While he knew he didn’t want to be an engineer — or a manager of other engineers — Glass maintained an interest in technology and patents, and knew he’d “feel a bit more satisfied helping them protect their ideas.”

Over the last three years, Glass has made the most of his time in law school. He completed a pair of summer internships at Barnes & Thornburg and Banner Witcoff, both respected firms in Washington, D.C., and a 3L residency with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, a core judicial center for the IP and patent fields. He also served as a TA for Professor Jon Cavicchi’s Legal Research and Information Literacy class and as a 3L proved to be a more than capable editor-in-chief of IDEA, the UNHFP Law Review. Glass credits Cavicchi, along with Professor John Orcutt and retired US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Judge Arthur Gajarsa — a distinguished jurist-in-residence at the Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property — for their mentorship.

Those three in different ways definitely became mentors and advocates for me,” Glass says. “I didn’t necessarily expect the mentorship to be so available.”

Orcutt gave Glass a look at another area of the law when he invited him to be part of the law school’s new Federal Low-Income Taxpayer Practicum, which worked with 603 Legal Aid’s Low-Income Taxpayer Project in New Hampshire. It was Judge Gajarsa who introduced Glass to Judge Jimmie Reyna of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, prior to his recent residency.

Cavicchi was impressed not only by Glass’s work ethic, but his interest in helping other students through his role as a TA, including holding weekly TA sessions and making himself available to answer questions whenever possible, along with his post with IDEA.

“It became evident to me that David was a student dedicated to helping others navigate the field of intellectual property and a budding leader within the UNH Law community,” Cavicchi says. “It was no surprise to me when David was appointed editor-in-chief of IDEA. From orientation in August to leading the charge on three separate publication issues, David guided his team to present their best work and become effective advocates in the IP community. It was an honor to watch him thrive in his passion for intellectual property.”

At commencement in May, Glass earned his JD summa cum laude and was the recipient of the Franklin Pierce Center of Intellectual Property Award and the Patent Law and Practice Award. Post-graduation plans include a return to Banner Witcoff in Washington, D.C., to begin his IP practice, with work in patent litigation, prosecution, and trademarks. That post will allow him to merge his knowledge of technology  and his engineer’s talent of problem-solving with the complexity of the legal issues surrounding IP.

Thinking back to his decision to leave a career as an electrical engineer that paid well and made good use of his undergraduate education, Glass has no regrets, and he encourages others to follow their gut the way he did.

“It can be hard at times to make these big decisions,” Glass says, “but if you just stick with what you’re feeling, and follow that, you will figure it out like I did.”