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This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Patent Examiner Student Trainee
Department:  Department Of Commerce
Agency:  Patent and Trademark Office
Job Announcement Number:  CP-2014-0001

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$30,456.00 to $39,590.00 / Per Year
Monday, October 21, 2013 to Monday, March 10, 2014
Internship-Full Time during the summer months and Full or Part-Time during the academic school year. - Internship period normally will be 12-18 months.
MANY vacancies - Alexandria, VA   View Map
Applications will be accepted from all United States Citizens and Nationals. This position is part of the Pathways Program and is open to students who are currently enrolled or accepted as a senior and pursing a bachelor's degree in Engineering from an accredited engineering school or university. Preferred fields of academic study: Biomedical, Computer, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering. 


Yearning for a job that harnesses the power of innovation, yet provides work/life balance? Look no further! As a Patent Examiner Student Trainee with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), you'll be working with the largest Intellectual Property Rights entity in the nation. You'll be supporting economic growth and positioning America as one of the world's top innovators. You'll gain on the job experience, training and mentorship.

The USPTO is seeking bright, innovative, results-oriented individuals to join our Veterans Internship Program (VIP). As an Intern, you will have the opportunity to gain valuable on the job training and experience related to the patent examining career field while pursuing your education. You will be placed in one of the following specialties: Biomedical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering.
A written agreement is required between the USPTO and student. After successfully completing your education and meeting USPTO work requirements, you may be converted to a permanent Patent Examiner position. The conversion is not guaranteed and is based on the needs of the USPTO.
Candidates selected for the Veteran Internship Program (VIP), for the Patent Examiner Student Trainee positions will be hired under the Pathways Internship Program. The Pathways Internship Program replaces the former Student Temporary Employment Program (STEP) and Student Career Experience Program (SCEP). 

NOTE:  Application cut-off dates will occur on 12/02/13 and 01/27/14, at 11:59PM (EST) during the open period of this vacancy annoucement.


  • Must be a United States citizen or national
  • Must be a senior graduating May 2015 through December 2015
  • Must have at least a 2.95 GPA
  • Must be seeking a Bachelor's degree in engineering
  • Must pass and maintain a background investigation


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You will receive assignments which are chosen to provide developmental training. You will perform a variety of developmental work assignments to ascertain the employees interests and aptitudes. Assignments are performed in a training environment and are designed to introduce the intern to patent processes and procedures. Duties may include: Learning to utilize a variety of automated search systems and learning processes and steps required to research and review patent applications.
Note: This is a student trainee position, which will require a significant amount of classroom and one-on-one training, and supervision.


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Applicants must have completed at least two full years of academic years of post high-school study. The required education must lead to a bachelor's degree with specialization in or directly related to the field of Professional Engineering. To be acceptable, the curriculum must: (1) be in a school of engineering with at least one curriculum accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) as a professional engineering curriculum; or (2) include differential and integral calculus and courses (more advanced than first-year physics and chemistry) in five of the following seven areas of engineering science or physics: (a) statics, dynamics; (b) strength of materials (stress-strain relationships); (c) fluid mechanics, hydraulics; (d) thermodynamics; (e) electrical fields and circuits; (f) nature and properties of materials (relating particle and aggregate structure to properties); and (g) any other comparable area of functional engineering science or physics, such as optics, heat transfer, soil mechanics, or electronics.

Two years of academic study is defined as 60 semester hours, 90 quarter hours, or the equivalent in a college or university.


  • Enrolled or formally accepted as a senior pursuing an undergraduate degree in engineering from an accredited engineering college or university in the DC, MD or VA metropolitan area.
  • Maintain student eligibility and enrollment for the duration of the internship.
  • Maintain at least a 2.95 overall grade point average on a 4.0 scale or the equivalent.

  • If selected, you must 1) sign a Pathways Internship Program agreement; 2) provide official documentation of enrollment and registration at the beginning of the academic semester/quarter; and 3) provide verification of academic status (transcript) at the end of each academic semester/quarter.
  • Be available to work full time during the summer months.
  • Complete 1000 hours of work experience upon graduation from school.
  • Complete undergraduate degree from college between May 2015 and December 2015.

NOTE: You may be made permanent upon graduation if you meet all program requirements and the requirements for a patent examiner position, and be recommended for conversion by your supervisor.


Your resume, supporting documentation and self-assessment answers will be evaluated for required competencies.
The self assessment questions cover the following competencies:

  • Ability to analyze and interpret written materials, including technical materials, rules, regulations, instructions, and reports.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective public relations with diverse user groups.
  • Skill in oral communications in order to make clear and convincing oral presentations.
  • Skill in written communications to produce written information which may be included in technical material.

Please note that a complete application is required for consideration. (Please review the "Required Documents" section of this vacancy announcement to see what must be included in a complete application).
Veterans' preference applies to selection for positions in the Pathways Programs. Selections must be made in accordance with the requirements of 5 CFR part 302, veterans' preference laws, and OPM guidance.
To preview questions please click here.


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The United States Patent and Trademark Office offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, paid holidays, life insurance, health benefits, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System. Alternative Work Schedule(AWS) and Telework Program are available to eligible employees. Visit USPTO links below for information concerning USPTO New Employee Information: (Please note by clicking on the links below you will be redirected away from this page and to the Website) USPTO Campus Reporting to Work Work/Life Balance Financial Employee Assistance Living in the D.C. Metro Area Visit the link below to explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees. Working for the Federal Government - Benefits The United States Patent and Trademark Office offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes, in part, paid vacation, sick leave, paid holidays, life insurance, health benefits, and participation in the Federal Employees Retirement System.  Alternative Work Schedule(AWS) and Telework Program are available to eligible employees.

Visit USPTO links below for information concerning USPTO New Employee Information: (Please note by clicking on the links below you will be redirected away from this page and to the Website)

USPTO CampusReporting to Work>Work/Life BalanceFinancialEmployee AssistanceLiving in the D.C. Metro Area

Visit the link below to explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees.

Working for the Federal Government - Benefits


If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service System. If you are exempt from registration under Selective Service Law, you must provide appropriate proof of exemption. Please visit the Selective Service System website for more information.
This postion is covered by USPTO labor union.
This is a Public Trust position and has a risk level designation of "moderate".
Background Investigation - If invited for an interview for this position, you may be required to complete a Declaration for Federal Employment (OF-306), to determine your suitability for Federal employment by authorizing fingerprinting, a credit check and a background investigation.
You may be required to sign and certify the accuracy of all the information in your application. If you make a false statement in any part of your application you may not be hired, you may be fired after you begin work or you may be fined.
The USPTO participates in E-Verify. For more information on E-Verify, please visit
All Federal employees are required to have Federal salary payments made by direct deposit to a financial institution of their choice.
Relocation Expenses are not authorized and will not be paid.
Tuition Expenses are not authorized and will not be paid.
All application materials become the property of the United States Patent and Trademark Office.


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We strongly encourage you to print and read the entire announcement before you submit your application for this position. You MUST apply online. If you experience difficulties with the application process or do not have access to a computer, please contact the HR Specialist listed as the point of contact before the closing date of this job announcement. If you are a new user to the USAJobs Site and have never registered for an account, you will first need to create an account profile with your basic contact information and a resume to begin applying. You must be a registered USAJobs user AND you must be signed-in to your account in order to apply for this position. For help setting up an account, or for general help using USAJobs, go to USAJobs Help Page. Once you have gathered all of the required information and are ready to begin the application process, click the "APPLY ONLINE" button on the right side of this page. You will then be directed away from USAJobs to the Department of Commerce application site for USPTO. NEED HELP? If you experience any difficulties with the application site, help is available! If you have problems completing your on-line application, contact the Monster Hiring Management Help Desk at 1-866-656-6831 or by e-mail at The help desk is available Monday - Friday 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Eastern Time. You may call and leave a voicemail message at all other times. All required supporting documents will be collected electronically via the USAJobs "Saved Documents" feature.


A complete application consists of:
1. A resume or any other written format you choose to describe your job-related qualifications; optional cover letter: Your resume should indicate your citizenship and should list your educational and work experience (including job titles, salary, employment dates, duties and accomplishments and how any experience relates to this job announcement.) Please Note: Responses to job questions that are not fully supported by the information in your resume may result in adjustments to your rating. Any experience claimed in a cover letter should be substantiated by information contained in your resume.
2. Transcripts: (for Individual Occupational Requirements and/or Substitution of Education for specialized experience): You MUST submit copies of your college transcripts for verification of the education requirements. Unofficial copies are acceptable, however, if selected you will be required to furnish official transcripts. It is your responsibility to provide adequate proof that you meet the above educational requirements. Inadequate or illegible information could result in non-qualification and loss of consideration.
Foreign Education: To receive credit for education completed outside the United States, you must provide documentation that demonstrates the education was evaluated and determined to be equivalent to that of an accredited U.S. educational institution.
3. You must submit a copy of your DD-214 (Member 4 copy) or an official statement of service from your command if you are currently on active duty, or other official documentation (e.g., copy of military orders, campaign documents or expeditionary award citation, etc.) that proves your military service was performed under honorable conditions.
You can choose ONE of the following methods to submit Supporting Documents: 1) You can upload your documents when you register, or update your information on the Department of Commerce application site, which you access through USAJobs. OR 2) You can fax your documents to 571-258-4052 using the system generated fax coversheet. Your application and all required documentation must be received by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on the closing date of this job announcement. NOTE: The preceding documentation requirements are based on job requirements and individual applicant eligibility. Not all documents are applicable to all applicants--if you are unsure which documents apply to you, contact the HR Specialist listed on this announcement. Review your resume and responses carefully. Responses to job questions that are not fully supported by the information in your application package may result in adjustments to your rating. A Human Resources Representative will validate the qualifications of those candidates eligible to be referred to the hiring official.


Dublin Byars
Phone: 571-272-6189
Fax: 000-000-0000
Agency Information:
550 Elizabeth Lane
Elizabeth Townhouse
Alexandria, VA
Fax: 000-000-0000


You will receive a notice generated by the USAJobs System when you have successfully submitted your application. After all application packages have been received, we will review your application and transcript(s) (if you are qualifying based on education) to ensure you meet the basic qualification requirements. We will evaluate each applicant who meets the basic qualifications on the information provided and you may be contacted for follow-up supplemental documentation. It is the applicant's responsibility to provide any supplemental documents or information requested by the Office of Human Resources within the allocated time frames. Failure to submit requested documents or information within 5 business days of receiving the request may result in your application not receiving further consideration. You can check the status of your application by logging into USAJobs. You may also sign up to receive automatic emails anytime the status of your application has changed by logging into your USAJobs Account, editing your profile and changing the 'Notification Settings' to indicate that you want to be notified by email when the status changes. Information regarding the status of your application should be updated in the system within 2 weeks after the closing date of this job announcement.

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