Bradley Merrill Thompson, Member of the Firm in the Health Care & Life Sciences practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was featured in Law360 Pulse, in “Epstein Becker Partner on Getting a Master's at 60,” by Emma Cueto. (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

Bradley Thompson, a member in Epstein Becker Green's Washington, D.C., office didn't expect to find himself going back to school as an established lawyer and a grandparent, but as his practice required more and more technical know-how, he decided to go for it and recently completed a master's degree in data science from the University of Michigan.

Thompson, whose practice involves counseling medical device and pharmaceutical makers around regulations of the Food and Drug Administration, spoke to Law360 Pulse about deciding to go back for the degree, how learning about artificial intelligence and data science has impacted his practice, and his take on whether lawyers should embrace legal tech solutions such as AI.

What originally made you want to go back to school for a master's in data science?

I have to tell you: I got kind of mad about how younger people started to dismiss me as not knowing enough about the science in this area. I focus on FDA regulation of medical technology, and for the last six or eight years, I've been noticing a lot of the technology involves artificial intelligence. I tried to learn a fair amount on my own — and I did — but I still only had an English major's understanding of AI.

I went and did this road show where we worked with graduate students in engineering to try to teach them about the FDA. I'd have one-on-one meetings where I would ask, "Can you explain what your algorithm does?" and they'd say, "I'd explain it, but you wouldn't understand."

And they're probably right in all honesty! So I thought, "If I'm going to stay in this business, then apparently I need to get some better understanding and maybe even a credential with regard to artificial intelligence."

Related reading:

University of Michigan, School of Information: "Bradley Thompson on Earning Master of Applied Data Science at 60"

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