We recognized Hutchinson Community College for offering one of Top Associate’s Degree Programs in Paralegal Studies, adding them to our list of top recommendations for students in the area.
We were excited to hear from Cheryl Clark, faculty member at Hutchinson Community College, who took the time to answer a few questions about how the school works to create a great student experience that helps prepare graduates for a career in the legal field.
Cheryl: Yes. Our program has a certificate program and I am finding this is appealing to students who already have a degree in some other field and they are wanting to make a career change and are interested in the legal/paralegal field as a career.
Paralegals are really getting the respect they deserve these days, and taking on more and more responsibilities on the job. How is this changing the approach to educating new paralegals?
Cheryl: As a coordinator for the program, it means to me that we need to have as many different paralegal classes available to students so once they graduate they have an idea of what area of law they might be interested in. Each area of law uses a paralegal differently and paralegal responsibilities in some areas are more than others.
Does the program at your school include an internship and are faculty available to help students find one?
Cheryl: Our program does have credit for an internship available by approval of the coordinator, but the students must find the internship themselves.
What are some of the things you love most about the paralegal program at your school – the kind of things you’d like future students to know about as they consider their options?
Cheryl: I love that HCC offers both an associate’s degree and a certificate program. For those who already have a degree of some type but are not happy with the career they are in, the certificate program allows them to take the core paralegal classes and be done in a very short period of time. Our program is also all online and that makes it so convenient for those working students who can work at their own pace from their own homes.
Check out our full interview series here to see what other professors and faculty are saying about their paralegal programs.