The AOP Veterans Program is a unique web-based career learningopportunity within the intellectual property (IP) industry. It aims to giveveterans hands-on experience and education in the IP field. The programmakes veterans aware of the skills and training required to compete for IP-related jobs and exposes them to career opportunities."I am excited to compete to win the $5,000 reward from AOP," saidJudy Leonard, a U.S. Air Force veteran who signed up for the program.She added, "More than anything, I look forward to learning about newopportunities for me and my fellow veterans."The AOP Veterans Program will engage veterans in a series of competitive research projects focused on pending patent applications to provide participants with functional training and education. As theylearn about patents and patent research, veterans will also be helping toimprove patent quality. AOP will submit art discovered by participatingveterans to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)under the new rules enabled by the America Invents Act (AIA)."Our agency applauds such efforts," said USPTO Chief AdministrativeOfficer Frederick W. Steckler, a U.S. Navy veteran. "This is the kind of innovative private sector initiative that the America Invents Act wasmeant to enable. Having veterans and other third parties contribute prior art to the patent examination process can help strengthen patent quality.It is a win-win for everyone involved."To increase career awareness, the program will also include interactivecareer learning sessions from IP executives. These sessions will discusscareer opportunities for veterans and the skills necessary to succeed inthe intellectual property industry.