Hawaii Paralegal Schools
There are many opportunities for prospective paralegals through enrollment in Hawaii paralegal schools, both on-campus and online paralegal degree programs. Paralegals fulfill valuable roles in law firms, as they provide support for attorneys through conducting legal research and drafting legal documents. Although paralegals work under the supervision of attorneys, they do much of the groundwork for the services that are provided by lawyers.
Profiles of Well Known Schools
Kapi’olani Community College: The Business, Legal, and Technology Education division at Kapi’olani Community College has the only American Bar Association approved paralegal program in the state of Hawaii. The Associate of Science is a two year evening course of study that is a total of 60 credit hours. All students enroll in foundation paralegal courses such as the Hawaii Legal System and Legal Research during their first year and then move onto specialized advanced courses their second year. Second year courses are specifically designed to prepare students for specialized paralegal practices including legal writing, client interviewing and litigation.
Hawaii Community College: Though not approved by the American Bar Association, the Hawaii Community College (a satellite campus of the University of Hawaii) offers a thorough and practical paralegal program. The Paralegal Certificate Course is offered both face-to-face and online for both beginning and advanced legal professionals. The program consists of two consecutive, intensive courses (Paralegal I and II), which together costs students less than $1,200. Both courses can be completed in less than two months and will adequately prepare interested individuals to work within attorney offices.
How to Become a Paralegal in Hawaii
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the state of Hawaii has one of the smallest paralegal populations. There is a modest 1000 individuals employed as paralegals in Hawaii with most of them being located in Honolulu. An aspiring paralegal can become a legal paraprofessional by either completing legal coursework, by receiving on the job training or a combination of the two. The paralegal must work under the direct supervision of a lawyer who will also take responsibility for the actions of the paralegal. There is a wide array of educational options that include certificate programs, an associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degree.
The median salary for a paralegal in the state of Hawaii is $52,270.00.
Online Paralegal Programs Available in Hawaii
There are many paralegal degree programs that are offered online in Hawaii. Some offer an associate’s degree in paralegal (Virginia College, Stonecliffe College Online, and Westwood College). Some offer an associate’s and a bachelor’s degree (Kaplan University – School of Legal Studies, Hodges University, and Keiser University). Some programs offer a certificate program in addition to their associate’s and bachelor’s degrees (Minnesota School of Business and Post University. George Washington University offers an online Master’s degree (Master of Professional Studies in Paralegal Studies), which is similar to their campus program.
On-Campus Paralegal Schools in Hawaii
There are several campus-based paralegal degree programs in Hawaii as well. These include Heald College and Kapi’olani Community College, both of which offer an associate’s degree in paralegal. The paralegal program at Kapi’olani Community College in Honolulu is an ABA-approved program. However, many of the online options are accredited by national and regional agencies as well.
Hawaii Paralegal Education Requirements
The state of Hawaii does not require any specific education, certification, or experience for one to work as a paralegal. This is something to consider when deciding what type of paralegal program to attend. It might be a good idea to contact some law offices in your area and ask what type of education or certification they are requiring of their paralegals. You might also find helpful information through the organization for paralegals, the Hawaii Association of Legal Assistants in Honolulu.
Top Law Firms for Paralegal Graduates in Hawaii
Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel was founded in 1878 and represents local, national, and international clients from its headquarters in Honolulu. Its multiple recognitions and awards bolster its reputation as a world class firm. Goodsill strives to provide a congenial and cooperative work environment and looks for applicants who will contribute towards the firm’s goals. Cades Schutte is also based in Honolulu, with additional offices in Kailua-Kona and Waimea. Cades works to train its professionals and maintains an environment of talent and creativity where recent paralegal graduates can thrive. Carlsmith Ball LLP is the oldest law firm in Hawaii and is also one of the largest. The firm provides legal services to Fortune 500 companies, small and mid size businesses, governments, and individuals. Carlsmith Ball is hiring to meet the staffing needs of its Pacific expansion.
Hawaii Paralegal Salary and Job Outlook
As the Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected 28% growth in the profession in the decade of 2008-2018, becoming a paralegal is an excellent career option. The middle 50% of paralegals in Hawaii earn between $44,879 and $58,584 annually. This figure, of course, varies depending on geographic location and type of position (e.g., working for a large law firm, working for a non-profit organization, etc.).
Online and Hawaii Paralegal Schools
- CERT: Paralegal Studies
Grand Canyon University
- M.S. in Criminal Justice: Legal Studies
Paralegal Schools in Hawaii
Kapiolani Community College (Honolulu, HI)
Paralegal Degrees Offered:
Associate of Science | Paralegal
Certificate | Legal Secretary
Page Edited by Charles Sipe.