This summer, Kevin Lawler went to NASA, and NASA put Kevin Lawler to work. “For me, I think it’s been fascinating that they’ve been giving me a lot of substantive work,” he tells us. “I kind of expected to be doing a lot of research that would go into something larger, but a lot of the times I’ve been putting together the final product.” Working with the the Commercial and Intellectual Property Law Group, Kevin has been exposed to a vast amount of different topics, something he shares his excitement about in this mini-profile.
What areas of public policy interest you?
I’ve been really interested in intellectual property policy this summer. It’s not something that we talk about much in school, so I’ve been learning a lot about it this summer. Things like balancing the patent rights and the inventors rights, with the idea that what’s made with federal dollars kind of belongs to taxpayers, has been very interesting.
What is the first thing you do when you get to the office every morning?
Open up my email and my calendar and make sure there’s not something I need to do right there and then, and grab a cup of coffee once that’s done.
What does a typical day in DC look like for you?
I get to work, check my email and calendar, make sure there aren’t any meetings that I need to run to. Usually I’ll be switching between two or three projects a day, going in and out of meetings. We have a lot of teleconferences with different attorneys across the country, so talking to them about what’s going on with the different centers. After work, I’ve had a lot of friends in town, so we’ll meet up at a museum if there’s time, or have dinner, etc. A lot of people want to visit DC so I’ve been able to keep pretty busy. After that, I head home and relax. It makes for a pretty busy day.
Have there been any surprises regarding living and working as an intern in DC?
To be honest, I like it a lot more than I expected to. I think it’s a good balance of a city. I was expecting it to be constant running around, but I think it’s got a more neighborhood feel than I expected. I was expecting a more New York feel, but it’s a bit more like Philadelphia.
Name one object that you brought with you to DC that reflects your personality.
I only brought clothes to DC. I bought my bed on Amazon as soon as I got here and got my decorations from work. I’ll be hopping around on flights for the rest of the summer, so I just have the bags that I brought with me for the next month. I like to travel a ton, so it works well.
In 30 years, what will you remember about living and working in DC?
All the opportunities that I’ve gotten to see and do in DC. This morning, I got to go to a Senate hearing, which you can’t do anywhere else. We have people visiting the headquarters a good amount, so I’ve been able to meet people that I otherwise would have never had the chance to meet.