Paralegals conduct many of the same tasks that attorneys do, with the exception of giving legal advice.
Those people in Hawaii, who want to work within the field of law, but do not want to complete law school, should consider a career as a paralegal.
There are several schools in Hawaii that offer paralegal training, and the following schools are some of the best.
Located in Honolulu, Heald College offers a fabulous associate in applied science/paralegal technology degree program, accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Those people, who would like to enroll within the paralegal program at Heald, can contact them at – 808-955-1500, or they can write to the campus at – 1500 Kapiolani Blvd., Honolulu, Hawaii, 96814. They can also find the enrollment procedures online at – www.heald.edu.
The paralegal program at Heald consists of a variety of basic skills and career-related courses. The basic skills courses are as follows – Keyboarding, Intermediate Keyboarding, Professional Career Development, Success Strategies, Composition and Reading, College Composition and Research, Principles of Public Speaking, Introduction to Environmental Science, Contemporary Literature/Cultural Perspectives, Elementary Algebra, Modern Business Mathematics, Introduction to Psychology, Essential Language Skills, and Essential Math.
The career-related courses included in the program are as follows – Introduction to Legal Terminology and the Profession, Legal Research, Legal Writing, Torts, Civil Litigation for Paralegals I and II, Criminal Law and Procedure, Legal Office Management, Business Organizations and Corporations, Family Law, Paralegal Capstone or Paralegal Internship, Contracts, Introduction to Software Applications, Ethics for Paralegals, Word Processing Essentials, and Spreadsheet Applications.
Kapiolani Community College
Kapiolani Community College, located in Honolulu, has a delightful associate in science/paralegal technology degree program, accredited by the Western Association for Schools and Colleges and approved by the American Bar Association. Those people, who would like to visit the college, can schedule a tour by calling – 808-734-9000. They can also request information by corresponding with the college at – 4303 Diamond Head Road, Honolulu, Hawaii, 96816 or by visiting – www.kapiolani.hawaii.edu.
Paralegal students at Kapiolani must complete a variety of basic education courses as follows to earn their degrees – Composition I or Exposition Writing, Speech elective, Introduction to Deductive Logic or Survey of Mathematics, Natural Science elective, Computer Literacy, Social Science elective, and one Fine Arts or Humanities elective.
They must also complete the following law-oriented courses to earn their degrees – The Hawaii Legal System, Litigation, Tort and Insurance Law, Legal Research, Computer Applications in the Law Office, Legal Interviewing/Negotiating and Advocacy, Family Law, Law Office Management, Legal Document Preparation, Legal Writing, Employment Law, Cooperative Paralegal Education, Consumer Law, and Advanced Torts.
Hawaii Community College
Located in Hilo, Hawaii Community College offers a fascinating certificate program in paralegal studies, accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. People, who would like to register for the program, can contact the college at – 808-934-2500, or they can request information by writing to them at – 200 West Kawili Street, Hilo, Hawaii, 96720. They can also read about the paralegal program online at – hawaii.hawaii.edu/ocet/.
Hawaii Community College offers the certificate paralegal program through their continuing education department. This program meets two days per week, eight hours a day, for approximately six weeks. The tuition, as of 2011, is $1,189, and the program is also available in online or DVD format. Students will learn many aspects of paralegal careers including such things as investigating complex factual patterns, assisting trial attorneys, researching laws, interviewing witnesses, and preparing for courtroom litigation.
ITT Technical Institute Online
ITT Technical Institute has several campuses across the US, and they offer both campus-based and online paralegal training, accredited by the Accrediting Council on Independent Colleges and Schools. Those people in Hawaii, who would like to earn their paralegal degrees online, can call ITT at – 205-497-5700 or write to them at – 6270 Park South Drive, Bessemer, Alabama, 35022. They can also find out about the online paralegal program at – www.itt-tech.edu/programs/.
For students to earn their associate of applied science degree in paralegal studies, they need to complete the following general education course work – Survey of the Sciences, American Government, College Mathematics I, Rhetoric in Contemporary Culture, Composition I, Professional Communications, Strategies for the Technical Professional, and Problem Solving Theory.
They also need to complete the following law-related course work – Fundamentals of Contract Law, Fundamentals of Family Law, Fundamentals of Tort Law, Research and Writing for the Paralegal I and II, Introduction to Civil Litigation, Law Office Technology, Introduction to Paralegal, Fundamentals of Constitutional Law, Fundamentals of Criminal Law, Paralegal Capstone, and at least one additional law-related elective.
Why Paralegals in Hawaii Should Obtain Certification
There are many benefits to obtaining paralegal certification; however, the best benefits are that certified professionals often enjoy more job opportunities, larger and more frequent raises and more promotions than non-certified professionals. There are currently four organizations offering certifications to paralegals, and they are as follows.
- The National Association of Legal Assistants, or NALA – (requires a written exam)
- The National Federation of Paralegal Associations, or the NFPA – (requires a paralegal exam)
- The American Alliance of Paralegals, or AAP – (requires several years experience as paralegal)
- The National Association of Legal Secretaries, or the NALS – (also requires a written test)
Those applicants, who need to complete a written exam, can find useful study material with the NALA, the NFPA, in public libraries and online. Some of the key areas that applicants will want to study within include legal terminology, government, legal ethics, litigation, family law, civil procedures and criminal law.