Wendt Commons Library serves the departments of Engineering, Computer Science, Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences, and Statistics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The library has been a PTDL/PTRC since 1976.
The PTRC representative is Nancy Spitzer. Jody Hoesly, who is now Wendt’s Assistant Director for Information Services, also specializes in patent and trademark information. We answered about 100 patent inquiries in person, by phone, email and chat last year. People also find us through our web pages and Patents Libguide. We spend much of the fall and spring semesters giving patents classes and found that we had reached over 1100 students last year.
Nancy continues to teach patents in undergraduate and graduate classes in engineering professional development, engineering mechanics and astronautics, biological systems engineering, microbiology and a Masters in Biotechnology program. She once again partnered with a business faculty member in a class on Technology Entrepreneurship with two sessions on patent and trademark searching. She and Jody also present patents searching in many mechanical engineering senior design classes.
In January Jody worked with local high school students on patent searching for a Project Lead the Way class on Engineering Design and Development. Jody has also been involved with First Lego League. Last July Nancy and Jody gave a patents session for six high school students taking a summer IP class as part of UW-Madison’s Accelerated Learning Program. The teens got a chance to learn about patents and trademarks, and tackle hands-on exercises using the online databases.