This week on LawNext: A look at the innovative Tech Edge J.D. program at Santa Clara University School of Law. As law schools come under fire for failing to teach the practical skills students need to succeed in the real world, this program does the opposite. It aims to change the return on investment in legal education by providing law students with the essential legal, technology and business skills that will prepare them to hit the ground running as tech lawyers in Silicon Valley. 

To discuss the program, host Bob Ambrogi is joined by the program’s founding director, Laura Norris, who also created and directs the school’s Entrepreneurs’ Law Clinic, and who also teaches courses for engineering students on IP and startup law. In June, the Silicon Valley Business Journal named Norris to its list of 100 Women of Influence, an annual list of women leaders who are “doing extraordinary things in an extraordinary time.” 

Prior to joining the Santa Clara Law faculty, Norris was in private practice representing technology startups and entrepreneurs. She was also the first vice president of legal affairs at Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. In 2014, she was one of only two academics named by The Recorder as one of the Top 50 Women Leaders in Tech Law. 

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Photo of Bob Ambrogi Bob Ambrogi

Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal publications, including The National Law Journal, and editorial director of ALM’s Litigation Services Division.