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Blinn Paralegal Program, Legal Assistant Student Organization to host Brazos Valley Paralegal Forum

Local veteran paralegals to share legal experiences, answer questions at the Blinn-Bryan Campus

April 12, 2017

The Blinn College Paralegal Program and Legal Assistant Student Organization will provide current and prospective students an opportunity to network with local paralegal professionals during the upcoming Brazos Valley Paralegal Forum.

Blinn will host a panel of veteran paralegals – including alumni of Blinn’s Paralegal Program – from 7-8 p.m. Thursday, April 13, in Bryan Campus Student Center Room F-120. There will be a short reception preceding the forum at 6:30 p.m.

Billy Hart, a member of Blinn’s Paralegal Program Advisory Committee and litigation paralegal with College Station-based law firm West, Webb, Allbritton & Gentry, P.C., will chair the discussion. The panelists will discuss trends and developments within the field, and share their personal experiences and perspectives regarding the positive impact paralegals have on the legal profession and the community.

“The Brazos Valley Paralegal Forum is a great opportunity for current and prospective students to learn, ask questions, and network with veterans in the paralegal profession,” said Robert Stanberry, Program Coordinator. “The presenting panel is elite and experienced. Billy Hart is a longtime supporter of Blinn’s Paralegal Program, and is one of the leading paralegals in the state of Texas.”

Paralegals, or legal assistants, serve as attorneys’ top assistants in the delivery of legal services, performing duties that include attending trials, assisting in testimony preparation, locating and interviewing witnesses, conducting client interviews and conducting investigations and research. Their role is expanding as companies look to hire employees with a broad understanding of legal matters. Job opportunities abound in private law firms, courts, government, insurance companies, administrative agencies and corporations.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for paralegals is expected to increase 8 percent between 2014 and 2024, creating more than 21,000 new jobs in the field. Paralegals earn a median pay of $48,810 per year, or $23.47 per hour.

With traditional classroom and online tracks available, Blinn equips students for a variety of law careers with an Associate of Applied Sciences (AAS) degree or a Legal Office Certificate. Courses are taught by a faculty comprised entirely of lawyers and judges whose classes are structured to promote quality student-faculty interaction. Students completing the AAS degree are eligible to sit for the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) certification exam, and majors in the program join the Legal Assistant Student Organization.

In addition to preparing students for careers, Blinn’s Paralegal Program provides a strong foundation of legal knowledge for students who choose to continue their education via law school.

“The Blinn Paralegal Program strives to connect local professionals with students currently enrolled in the program,” Stanberry said. “We want to give our students every perspective possible so they can be successful.”

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