by Nathaniel Parish
LSUA’s Continuing Education will be offering a Certificate in Paralegal Studies program starting September 14. The college-level, non-credit certificate program is designed to quicken the transition of a paralegal student into the workforce in eight months. Students will complete the program in April 2022 with a vast understanding of judicial systems, legal opinions, research, legal memoranda, ethical standards, and much more.
Professor Hal Scott, who serves as instructor of the program, says the biggest misconception prospective students have about becoming a paralegal is that the student must work in a law office after graduation. While that is a viable option, Scott says banks, nursing homes, title companies, real estate law offices, immigration service, judges’ offices and clerk of court offices all need paralegals. On average, paralegals in Louisiana earn $49,376 a year, with experienced paralegals earning $74,158 according to the Louisiana Workforce Commission, which rates the profession as a five-star occupation.
The advantage of LSUA’s in-person classes is the ability to answer student questions quickly, says Prof. Scott who has 48 years of experience in the legal field. He has taught the LSUA Paralegal program since its inception in 2016 and has a 97% success rate for graduates requesting employment placement.
Students will have the opportunity to learn from a variety of distinguished guest speakers in the fields of civil law, criminal law, banking, and other related areas of significant interest to a Paralegal professional. Real-life experience from these professionals will enrich the program as well as provide the opportunity to build business relationships and networking opportunities.
Students will be introduced to and have access throughout the course to such research engines as LexisNexis, the United States Supreme Court website, the Louisiana Supreme Court website, the Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeal website, the Louisiana legislative law website, various clerk of court websites and various district attorney websites.
There are no perquisites required to register for the program. Classes meet each Tuesday from 6:00 – 8:30 pm on the LSUA campus with ample room for social distancing and mask protocols will be followed.
LSUA’s Department of Continuing Education is the non-credit extension of the LSUA College of Business.
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