WCC Paralegal Studies Program


People around you every day need help
with the law whether it’s just understanding it or knowing who to go and talk to. You’re there assist the attorney and
really to make their lives easier. Paralegal plays a big role in client
relations because they’re our gatekeepers. They can be in on the client interview, an intake. They can be working on the legal research. They can be
working on the investigation, some of the background work, organizing
the files. As you go through the classes and especially as you do your internship with the paralegal program you get a feel more of possibly what they
expect of you. A paralegal must absolutely be self-directed. In addition it is really almost essential that you have a very good working knowledge of
Microsoft Word and that you be at least a decent writer. It’s a challenging field, it’s ever-changing, so understanding the law, interpreting it, making sense of everything I find to be a little bit challenging, but
that’s also very exciting and rewarding. Going to the paralegal
program really opened up doors for me as far as getting a foot in the door with the
local attorneys that instruct here at Whatcom. Having somebody who’s bright and engaged and knows the cases and has the background that they get
at community college is what makes me able to do my job. We have a program that’s two years for
those that don’t have a baccalaureate degree. For those that already have a bachelor’s degree, we have
a paralegal certificate and that takes them one academic year. The environment, it’s very welcoming, it’s not threatening
or intimidating. Our street law, a free clinic that
involves our paralegal students, provides real-world hands-on experiences for our students. We use them to leverage a lawyers time, so we have three or four paralegals interviewing the clients. You get
to understand the difficulty in drawing out information from the clients to find out if they actually have a case or
not. This is exactly the kind of thing in many law offices that you will be doing.
You are on the front line. You make them feel comfortable or not. There’s an awful lot of desk jobs where you don’t get that kind of satisfaction. Helping people get back on their feet and move on with their lives, and in the law you can do that.

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1 Response

  1. Athena Waschke says:

    Very cool, ladies. Great job!
    I loved the WCC Paralegal program. It was invaluable for me. And I love my career as a paralegal.

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