All students in the Paralegal Studies Program (both associate degree and certificate candidates) are required to complete a 180-hour paralegal internship (PLG 199 Paralegal Experience) in the law office or legal environment of their choice.
The course competencies of the paralegal internship are as follows:
- Develop professional level skills in oral and written communications.
- Develop a first-hand understanding of law-related office organizations and their internal systems, such as for timekeeping, billing, and file management.
- Acquire a sound, contextual understanding of legal and professional ethics, including, but not limited to, regarding client confidentiality, conflict of interest, and the unauthorized practice of the law.
- Create a portfolio of work samples (or writing samples).
The prerequisites for completing the internship include Legal Research & Writing I (PLG 110 "C" or better), Legal Research & Writing II (PLG 120 "C" or better), Contract Law (PLG 140), Civil Litigation and Tort Principles (PLG 210), and Criminal Law and Procedure (PLG 240). You must complete the internship application process and obtain Director’s approval of the internship site.
The following documents will provide further information regarding the Paralegal Experience/Legal Ethics (PLG 199):
- Prospective Intern Letter
- Paralegal Internship Application Form
- Student Guide for Internship
- Faculty Recommendation Statement
- Letter for Prospective Employers/Supervisors
- Sources to Locate a Paralegal Internship
- Co-Op/Internship Student Agreement
- Use of Place Employment Request
- Waiver Request to Take PLG 197
For students who are unable to complete the Paralegal Experience/Legal Ethics due to full-time employment in the non-legal field or other exigent circumstances, they may submit a Waiver Request to the Director of Paralegal Studies to take Paralegal Practicum/Legal Ethics (PLG 197). Students submitting Waiver Requests will need to meet with the Director of Paralegal Studies to discuss their particular circumstances. If a student’s Waiver Request is approved, the Director of Paralegal Studies will then register such student for Paralegal Practicum/Legal Ethics (PLG 197).
Complete internship packets can also be picked up from the Student Employment Services and Co-Op Center and the Director of Paralegal Studies.