About this course
The paralegal is a trained professional who prepares and interprets legal documents, conducts and analyzes legal and factual research, and assists attorneys in the practice of law and legal procedures. Paralegals may not provide legal services to the public except as permitted by law. While a paralegal cannot give legal advice, set fees or argue in court, the paralegal can play a vital role in the delivery of legal services to all segments of society.
The Associate Degree Paralegal Studies Program prepares the student to enter this challenging field by combining intensive study of all basic paralegal skills with a strong liberal arts curriculum. The program is approved by the American Bar Association, which has established strict guidelines for excellence in paralegal education. All paralegal course work is taught by experienced attorneys and paralegals who are specialists in their field and is consistent with the general principles of ethical and legal practice as defined by the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility and with the legal restrictions on the practice of law by lay persons.
Program work is supported by an extensive, modern law library located in the college library and by computer assisted legal research databases. In addition to classroom study, each student will develop a writing portfolio and, during the second year, be placed in an internship that will provide invaluable work experience and may lead to full-time employment. Placement counseling is conducted by the Legal Studies Program, assisting students in obtaining employment following graduation.
In addition to a strong foundation in legal study, the program offers students a wide variety of electives that allow pursuit of a broad-based paralegal education or focused training in any number of fields including legal administration, corporate law, litigation, public service, or criminal justice.