Registration opens soon – A look into exciting summer offerings

Summer registration opens March 20 for 3Ls and LLM students, and March 22 for 1Ls and 2Ls. Here are some exciting elective offerings for students this summer, Trademark Clinic and Food Law:

Trademark Clinic, Experiential Course -- Prof. Hedayati/W 1:30-3:30 p.m. (2)

Like all the clinics California Western offers, Trademark Clinic is one of the best opportunities available at our school to build your practical skills that will impress potential future employers. In the Trademark Clinic, law students provide free services primarily to small business owners who want to register federal trademarks but can’t afford to hire IP attorneys. The participation of hard-working law students is essential to the clinic’s ability to expand legal aid in the area of trademark law.

Thus, working directly with clients is a big part of being in Trademark Clinic. Although the professor is always happy to give advice, students are trusted to take the lead on client communications, which is an invaluable learning experience. Although having already taken a Trademark Law course is helpful, it is not a requirement to join Trademark Clinic.

I have benefitted from learning the basics in a more hands-on way than a traditional lecture course, though again, the Trademark Law class is helpful. The supervising attorney, Prof. Hedayati, will provide you with reading material that will guide you through trademark law and how to provide exceptional client representation.

Over the summer, the clinic meets just two hours weekly and you do the rest of your work on your own, which is great for flexibility with summer leisure or travel plans. This is also a great opportunity to earn a couple of units and learn skills alongside a part-time summer internship that you may already have planned.  During this spring trimester, I am currently interning off-site 30 hours  and am simultaneously a Student Practitioner in the clinic, along with taking classes. While the clinic is a time commitment, the flexibility allows you to work on your own time and balance your schedule with client deadlines.

The supervising attorney Carrie Hedayati, who is a practicing trademark attorney and a Cal Western graduate, is so helpful and a great mentor. I feel confident when assisting clients under her leadership. There is no better opportunity to learn the ropes under the guidance of a professor who understands how new trademark registration is for everyone.

Even if you do not plan on practicing trademark law after graduation, knowing how to file trademark registrations is useful for the future if you or your law firm wants to register a trademark without the expense of hiring outside counsel.  Note that completion of STEPPS is a requirement to enroll in this course.

Please contact current clinic students Heather Daiza ( or Sara Gold ( to ask about our experience. For information on how to apply for the clinic, contact Prof. Carrie Hedayati at

– Heather Daiza

Food Law, A New Course in Summer 2018 -- Prof. Sax/MW 12:45-2:10 p.m. (3)

Malnutrition is the leading cause of death and disease world-wide.  We need to address this problem, now, and science is an important tool by which to do so.  Climate change is probably the biggest issue that needs immediate attention, and changes to farming practices are part of that solution.  Food is at the nexus of some of the most pressing problems this world faces, and my new course, Food Law, will address a myriad of issues about food regulation and the larger social context.

The area of food law has occupied a great deal of my time for the past few years.  My entré into this area began in 2013, when I was invited to present my research on dietary supplements at a conference on the future of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) at Harvard Law School.

While most of this FDA conference focused on drugs, the last panel of the two-day conference addressed the regulation of food.  Other presenters on my panel offered their thoughts on GMOs, which conflicted with the scientific evidence about the safety of GMOs (it is safe).  The audience erupted and the discussion that followed showed the extent of the controversy regarding GMOs.

With my science background (I have a PhD in molecular biology), I knew I should enter this fray in my research.  So, for the past five years, I have researched, written, and presented about GMOs.  The scientific consensus is that GMOs are as safe as non-GMOs.  In many cases, the technology to make GMOs will lead to healthy and environmentally-friendly products, comparable to conventional or organic products.  However, the regulatory structure for GMOs is not based on the science, which is problematic.  Properly regulating our food supply is important for both national and international reasons. I hope students will consider taking this new course, engage in these important issues, and contemplate a career in food law – many related job opportunities exist.

For more information, please contact me at

– Prof. Joanna Sax


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