From participating in education case studies to receiving a post graduate degree in London, UMass Amherst and iCons alumni LeeAnn Monteverde is no stranger to the pursuit of several different academic disciplines.
She graduated in 2015 with a dual degree in Psychological and Brain Sciences on the Neuroscience Track and Intellectual Property Law. Monteverde is currently enrolled in her second year at New York Law School pursuing a Juris Doctor degree concentrating on pharmaceutical patent law. This type of law focuses on helping pharmaceutical manufacturers write patents to put them on the market, which requires an extensive knowledge of the science behind drug manufacturing.
“It’s been challenging, but in a fun way!” Monteverde says about her broad experience in different fields.
Her transition from undergraduate to law school has been one of the most challenging yet.
“It’s almost nothing like undergrad,” Monteverde said.
However, having a science background has helped her adjust to the intense course load and critical thinking.
“Sometimes the science background helps, and sometimes it doesn’t,” Monteverde explains, “it helps me look at things from a different perspective, law school is all about creative solutions. Sometimes I have people ask me ‘where did you even come up with that?’”
Unlike most undergraduate students, Monteverde got a head start in the research field. Her high school, Sanford H. Calhoun located in Merrick, NY, had a program similar to iCons. This program allowed her to participate in research at Cornell University as a high school student.
While enrolled as a student at UMass, Monteverde was no stranger to being involved in different academic disciplines. After being accepted to UMass as a biology major on the pre-medical track, she decided on law school early into her freshman year when she learned about patent law.
She also helped design a class focusing on scientific law with UMass physics professor Scott Heath and a local attorney. This physics professor was involved in physics and patent law, and together he and Monteverde designed a class focusing on space law, which governs the activities in outer space.
As for her strategy for balancing different professional paths, she finds iCons helped her by giving her a broader perspective.
“It’s important to look at the bigger picture, and I still have that in the back of my mind,” she said.