The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) University graduated 73 students on June 22, 2000, at 1:30 p.m. at the Marriott Crystal Forum, Crystal City Marriott in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Patent and Trademark University (USPTO-U), which began in 1994, is a tremendously successful on-site, after-hours college program that helps USPTO employees develop skills that will maximize their opportunities at the USPTO, while minimizing the demands on their time. The program was initiated by the National Treasury Employees Union 243 members, USPTO's management, its Work Force Effectiveness Division (WED) and the Office of Human Resources.
This year's graduating class received various certificates and degrees from Marymount University and Syracuse University Maxwell School. The certificates and/or degrees awarded in this year's ceremony are: Career Studies Certificate in Business Information Technology, Associate in Applied Science in Business Management, Associate in Applied Science in Legal Assisting, Associate in Applied Science in Administrative Support Technology, Associate in General Studies, Graduate Certificate in Information Resources Management, Graduate Certificate in Legal Administration, Computer Scientist Certificate and certificates from Syracuse University Maxwell School.
USPTO, a user fee-funded agency of the United States, within the Department of Commerce, administers laws relevant to granting patents and registering trademarks. The Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office advises the Secretary of Commerce and other Federal departments and agencies on intellectual property policy matters. Over 6 million patents have been issued since the first patent in 1790 and 2.3 million trademarks have been registered since the first in 1870. Last year USPTO issued 161,000 patents and registered 104,000 trademarks.
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