at Meredith College
Meredith’s ABA-approved paralegal program will prepare you to become a successful paralegal in a rapidly-changing legal environment. Our expert instructors, extensive professional network, and online option will help you advance your career while maintaining a work/life balance.
Our Paralegal Certificate Program
Women and men in Meredith’s Paralegal Certificate Program develop the specific skills needed in today’s rapidly-changing legal environment. Our flexible course scheduling, central location in Raleigh, N.C., and online paralegal certificate option will help you maintain a work-life balance while achieving your professional goals.
With the only Paralegal Program in the Triangle that’s approved by the American Bar Association, Meredith provides opportunities to gain experience, build connections in the legal community, and benefit from job placement assistance.
Through our certificate program, you will
- Learn to conduct research and analyze cases
- Gain practical knowledge from experienced judges, lawyers, and paralegals
- Build a network of connections in the legal community
- Benefit from job placement assistance
- Choose to study in-person or online
Why Earn Your Paralegal Certificate at Meredith?
- Quality – Meredith’s Paralegal Program is the only program in the Triangle approved by the American Bar Association. And ABA-approval automatically makes us a North Carolina State Bar qualified program.
- Choice – Focus your studies on one of three concentrations:
- Civil Litigation
- Business Organizations
- Real Estate
- Personal – With an average class size of under 20 students, you’ll establish personal relationships and professional networks with both instructors and peers. And you’ll meet with the program director to develop job search strategies.
- Expert Instruction – Classes are taught by working paralegals, attorneys, and judges who teach in their areas of expertise.
- Value – Tuition and fees compare favorably with other paralegal certificate programs. And a number of our students’ fees are paid by their employers.
- Flexible – Evening classes are designed for working adults; choose from in-person or online options.
- Relevant – The program is designed to train paralegals, not lawyers. And Meredith also provides continuing education courses for graduates.
- Career Assistance – Meredith’s contacts in the legal community share job openings weekly and eagerly seek our graduates for employment opportunities. And a professional development course focuses on the job search including
- interviewing skills
- employer expectations
- paralegal career options
- creation of a portfolio of work
- Competitive – All students hold bachelor’s degrees, so your peers will function at high academic levels.
- Efficient – How long does it take to become a paralegal? Meredith’s online and in-person programs both take just eight months or two semesters.
8 Month Program
online and in-person options
Competitive tuition, federal financial aid eligible program
Open to all
88% Job Placement Rate
within 3 months of certificate completion
What Does a Paralegal Do?
Paralegals perform legal research, draft and prepare documents, and gather and organize factual information. Responsibilities differ depending on the kind of business or firm and its size and specialization. Training as a paralegal provides instruction in basic legal principles and skills which can be transferred to various settings. In North Carolina, a paralegal cannot independently give legal advice to clients, represent clients in court, accept a case, or set a fee.
- Past chairs of the North Carolina Paralegal Association, North Carolina Bar Association’s Paralegal Division, Raleigh-Wake Paralegal Association, RTP Paralegal Association and others
- They work in law firms, corporations, government agencies and non-profits
- Many have developed prominent careers in legal services throughout North Carolina and across the country
- Alumni have distinguished careers as lawyers and judges
Graduates are also employed by top companies and organizations including
- Merrill Lynch
- Epic Games
- NC Department of Transportation
- Red Hat
- Legal Aid
- Credit Suisse
- PRA Health Services
- NC Department of Justice
- Martin Marietta
- US Attorney’s Office
The median annual wage for paralegals is $56,230. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of paralegals and legal assistants is projected to grow 14 percent from 2021 to 2031. In fact, approximately 45,800 openings for paralegal jobs are projected each year, on average, over the decade.
A paralegal career offers intellectually challenging and varied work in the legal field for a much smaller investment of time and money. However, the paralegal field can be a good option for students who are interested in a legal career but who are not sure about law school or are not ready to go immediately. Training and working as a paralegal can be a way to test your interest in becoming an attorney and gain practical skills to give you a head start in law school.
ABA-Approved Paralegal Programs
Educational programs for paralegals vary. The fact is, programs for paralegal certification may or may not be approved or accredited. Because paralegals are not licensed, a certificate from an ABA-approved program is considered a solid indication of a quality education and the preference of many employers.
Lakisha Chichester has used the knowledge she gained in Meredith’s paralegal program to steadily advance in her field as a senior corporate paralegal.
After working in the legal field for six years, Amy Malouf earned her paralegal certificate from Meredith to continue to grow her career. She chose Meredith because of its ABA certification and her desire to have a good work/life balance.
Information for Employers
Meredith College has a strong track record of working with employers to help meet their needs for highly skilled paralegal professionals. Here are some of the ways we can work together: