Vatterott OKC Paralegal Studies

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Employment Search Tips

I realize we are only in week three of the phase.  Honestly, though, it is never too early to at least start thinking of what you would like to do when you graduate.  It is also never to early to think of a plan.  Even if this is your first phase here at Vatterott OKC, you can look at your goals.

  • Start considering the areas of law you want to work in.  Make a list of areas you do not want to work in.
  • Get your resume and cover letter ready to go.  You can find multiple examples online.  Even better – you can talk with Daniel in Career Services.
  • Start networking.  You cousin’s best friend’s brother may not need a paralegal now, but he might in the future…or he may know someone.  You can join NALA for a nominal fee.  Oklahoma Paralegal Association also has a student membership that is an affordable rate.
  • Take a good look at your abilities.  Brush up where needed.
  • Do you have writing samples?  If the answer is no, come see me.
  • Don’t discount receptionist positions in law offices and law firms.  You will earn valuable hands-on experience.  I learned how to draft interrogatories, requests for production, and summarize medical records as a receptionist.
  • Use your resources.  Vatterott OKC puts out a list every week of job openings.  You can also use indeed.com, jobsok.com, monster.com, careerbuilder.com, and even craigslist.org.  Sign up for free job alerts.  Even if you aren’t looking now, you will know who is hiring.

 

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8 thoughts on “Employment Search Tips

  1. I like the employment tips!

    I have worked for law firms as a legal secretary for 27 years, and have wore many hats. However, there has been considerable downsizing within the legal industry. Many law firms will no longer train secretaries to become paralegals.

    My goal is to return to school to attain a two-year Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies.

    Lastly, I am working on converting my resume to Federal standards, and seek work outside of the public sector — the Department of Veteran Affairs.

    Thank you for sharing!

    • Great idea! One thing I recommend from working in career services is to tailor your résumé and cover letter just a little for every job. Follow up is also very important.

      usajobs.com is your friend for federal jobs! Thanks for stopping by!

      • Thank you very much for responding with more great tips!

        I live in Los Angeles, and a course in paralegal studies is not easy to come by. Most community colleges are too far for me to travel. However, UCLA offers a certificate program, and the ABA has not approved an online course for paralegal studies.

        Do you have any suggestions?

        NAMASTE’

      • Go with the certificate program unless you just want to jump straight to looking at NALA certification. The ABA will not approve totally online courses. However, attending a non-ABA approved school doesn’t mean that the program is terrible. I received my BS in Paralegal Studies from Kaplan. Their program is not ABA approved. I was offered a job a year before I graduated. Now I teach.

        You can also look on the NALA web page at the salary rate for your area. It breaks it down to degrees and experience as well.

        Look at your local employment ads and see what most employers ask for in a paralegal. Here, the big thing is experience and NALA certification.

      • Thank you so much!

        I am a Veteran, and returning to school on a VA approved program. So, I’m waiting for my letter of orientation, so that when I appear, I will have a school in mind that is at least VA approved.

        The VA will inform me whether or not they will pay for an ABA or non-ABA approved program.

        I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

        Thank you so much, and I will spend today doing further research.

      • First, thank you for serving our country. I appreciate your sacrifice! Next, definitely do your research. With being a vet, you know you get preferential points if you apply for a government job. You can check out USAJOBS.com. Make sure you check out different websites pertaining to being a paralegal. Check with the career services of whatever program you choose to see how they assist you in your job search process. Finally, and most important in my personal (unbiased – HA!!) opinion, subscribe to this blog if you haven’t done so already.

  2. You are most welcome, and thank you again for your help!

    NAMASTE’

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