Students with all types of interests are encouraged to participate in the RIPL Candidacy Honors Program because the scope of RIPL reaches all facets of law. Past candidates have written on various topics that include wine recipes, trade secrets, advanced baseball statistical programs, patent trolls, genetically modified organisms, music rights and even fashion counterfeits. In light of RIPL’s merger with JITPL in 2019, candidates can now write about privacy, information technology, and cybersecurity topics. In total, RIPL’s goal is to guide candidates through the writing process, which results in a publishable quality work. RIPL, along with the legal market, understands that the ability to write and research provides a competitive edge in securing employment. Furthermore, by completing the candidacy process, a person indicates that they have a strong ability to commitment and perseverance.
In order to participate in the RIPL Candidacy Honors Program, a student must make a commitment of two consecutive semesters. The first semester consists of writing a persuasive comment or case note on a topic of the candidate’s choosing. Each candidate will be assigned to a member from the RIPL executive editorial board, who will serve to guide and encourage the candidate throughout the semester and comment or case note writing process. At the end of the semester, the comment or case note will be evaluated upon the candidate’s ability to engage in legal analysis and to write clearly, logically, and persuasively.
Upon successful completion of the first semester of the RIPL Candidacy Honors Program, the student will become a RIPL Staff Editor. Production assignments are integral to RIPL’s publication process and these assignments refine a candidate’s research, editing, cite-checking, and proofreading skills. Additionally, upon acceptance of the candidate’s comment or case note, he or she will have the opportunity to publish his or her article in one of the most widely respected intellectual property journals in the world. Washington and Lee Law Library recently ranked RIPL the number 3 IP journal in the world for 2019. RIPL has been cited as persuasive authority by the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and parties petitioning the United States Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari.
There are two ways to receive an invitation to join the RIPL Candidacy Honors Program: “grade on” or “write on.”
- Grade-On Qualifications: Students who have completed at least 24 credit hours and have ranks that are within the top 25% of their class are automatically eligible to join the Journal.
- Write-On Qualifications: Students who have completed at least 24 credit hours and have ranks that fall within the range of 26% to 50% are eligible to write on to the Journal. The write-on program is hosted by both JMLS journals and requires a student to write a short law review comment that analyzes a specific closed research problem. The student’s comment will then be reviewed by the RIPL executive editorial board, and those students who successfully complete the write-on qualifications will receive invitations to participate in the RIPL Candidacy Honors Program.