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Mississippi Paralegal Schools

In 2014, Mississippi employed 1,490 paralegals, most of whom were situated in the Jackson area.1 Mississippi paralegal schools have seen a greater influx of students as more people begin taking advantage of the job growth in the legal market. Paralegal job opportunities are increasing with great speed as more firms look to administrative professionals to fulfill tasks normally left to attorneys. Mississippi schools offer prospective paralegals a solid place to start their careers.

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How to Become a Paralegal in Mississippi

People who would like to become a paralegal in Mississippi have a variety of options. The state does not have any education or training requirements for paralegals, meaning that prospective paralegals can choose to attend a school to attain a paralegal degree or be hired at a law firm and learn the trade on the job. Mississippi paralegals must also work under the supervision of an attorney, and are unable to provide legal advice to the general public.

Paralegal Quote: “The best piece of advice I have received came early in my career when I was told to ‘speak up.’ Meaning that if the attorney you are working for is incorrect in any aspects, from procedures to laws, speak up. Our duties are not only to assist attorneys, but to keep them on the right track. This is especially true when you are a veteran paralegal and you are working for a green attorney.” -Donna C. Alderman ACP, President of the Mississippi Paralegal Association

Mississippi Paralegal Salary and Job Outlook

Paralegals in Mississippi made $44,160 average in 2014, and $48,540 in the Jackson-area, which is right around the national average.1 Considering that the state boasts a 10.9% lower cost of living than the rest of the US, these average salaries will go much further than in other states.2 The outlook for paralegals in the state is also positive. Through 2022, paralegal jobs are expected to grow by 14.9% through 2022, which is just slightly lower than the national average for the profession, but still high.3 Between 2012 and 2013, in the professional and business services sector, which includes the paralegal profession, Mississippi grew by 4.3%, faster than the national average of 3.5%.4 These statistics are encouraging for anyone considering becoming a paralegal in the state of Mississippi.

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Profiles of Well-Known Schools in Mississippi

Mississippi University for Women: The College of Business and Legal Studies at the Mississippi University for Women has both a Bachelor of Arts in paralegal studies and a Bachelor of Science in paralegal studies. Both courses of study are approved by the American Bar Association and consist of 124 credit hours. All students are required to complete lower level major courses such as Introduction to the Legal Profession, Legal Bibliography and Research (I and II), Law Office Tech and Management, and the Legal Environment of Business. The Practical Legal Lab is similar to an internship, in which students are assigned to a professional setting based on their specialization.

University of Southern Mississippi: The University of Southern Mississippi’s Department of Political Science, International Development and International Affairs has an American Bar Association-approved Bachelor of Arts in Paralegal Studies. This 124 hour degree has 36 of its credits dedicated to major courses and 12 dedicated to a single foreign language. Internships in Paralegal Studies is an elective, but many students decide to complete it over the summer months. Paralegal studies juniors have the opportunity to receive financial assistance is they apply for the Frank D. Montague, Jr. Paralegal Studies Endowment.

Top Law Firms for Paralegal Graduates in Mississippi

Wise Carter Child & Caraway P.A. is a constantly growing law firm that seeks to understand its clients’ business goals in order to provide exceptional representation. Many clients of Wise Carter are high profile, including Ace USA, Inc., G.E. Med Pro, the Coca-Cola Company, Safeco Insurance Company, and other notable names. Wise Carter encourages all of its staff to engage in pro bono work, both legal and otherwise; the firm regularly partners with clients to work with Habitat for Humanity and similar charitable services. Brunini, Grantham, Grower & Hewes PLLC has over one hundred years of history, and is now one of the largest law firms in Mississippi as well as one of the most respected. Its client list comprises Fortune 500 companies and smaller companies, all of which benefit from Brunini Grantham’s focus on commercial, litigation, and regulatory law. Brunini Grantham offers some of the highest compensation in the region, and welcomes applicants to its professional staff. Hand Arendall LLC works in civil practice, focusing on maximizing efficiency and results for its clients. From its offices in Jackson and elsewhere Hand Arendall works with clients based in Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle in a variety of practice areas where paralegal help is crucial.


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Paralegal Schools and Programs in Mississippi

Hinds Community College (Raymond)
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Associate of Applied Science | Court Reporting Technology
Associate of Applied Science | Court Reporting Technology: Broadcast Captioning
Associate of Applied Science | Court Reporting Technology: Communications Access Realtime Translation (CART)
Associate of Applied Science | Judicial Reporting
Program | Pre-Law

Holmes Community College (Goodman)
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Technical Certificate | Paralegal Technology
Advanced Technical Certificate | Paralegal Technology
Program | Pre-Law

Itawamba Community College (Fulton)
Associate of Arts | General Studies: Paralegal
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Mississippi College (Clinton)
Bachelor of Science | Paralegal Studies
Bachelor of Science | Paralegal Studies (online)
Bachelor of Arts | Law/English (Literature) 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Arts | Law/English (Writing) 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Arts | Law/Sociology 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Arts | Law/Political Science 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Arts | Law/Business Administration 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Science | Law/Business Administration 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Science | Law/Administration of Justice 3+3 Program
Bachelor of Science | History- Pre-Legal Emphasis
Bachelor of Science | Political Science- Pre-Legal Emphasis
Master of Laws | Advocacy
Master of Laws | Traditional Studies
Master of Laws | American Legal Studies
Master of Laws | International and European Studies
Certificate | Civil Law Studies
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Business and Commercial Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Civil Litigation
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Criminal Practice
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Family and Juvenile Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Health Care Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | International Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Civil Law Studies
Minor | Paralegal Studies
Program | Executive Law

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College (Perkinston)
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Certificate | Paralegal Technology Gaming Concentration

Mississippi University for Women (Columbus)*
Bachelor of Technology | Professional Studies: Legal Administration
Bachelor of Technology | Professional Studies: Legal Administration (online)
Bachelor of Arts | Legal Studies
Bachelor of Science | Legal Studies
Minor | Legal Studies
Minor | Legal Studies (online)

Northeast Mississippi Community College (Booneville)
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology

Northwest Mississippi Community College (Senatobia)
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology
Associate of Applied Science | Paralegal Technology (online)
Associate of Applied Science | Pre-Paralegal Studies
Certificate | Paralegal Technology

The University of Mississippi (University)
Bachelor of Professional Studies | Paralegal Studies
Bachelor of Engineering | Pre-Law Emphasis
Master of Laws | Air and Space Law
Master of Laws | Air and Space Law (online)
Master of Laws | Air and Space Law (part time)
Minor | Legal Studies
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Business Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Business Law (online)
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Business Law (part time)
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Criminal Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Criminal Law (online)
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Criminal Law (part time)
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Remote Sensing, Air and Space Law
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Remote Sensing, Air and Space Law (part time)
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate | Remote Sensing, Air and Space Law (online)

University of Southern Mississippi (Hattiesburg)*
Bachelor of Arts | Paralegal Studies
Minor | Legal Studies
Program | Pre-Law

*Approved by the American Bar Association (ABA)

Additional Resources

  • Mississippi Paralegal Association – Dedicated to the paralegal profession in the state of Mississippi, promoting professional development, continuing education, and national certification.

References:
1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, Paralegals and Legal Assistants: http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes232011.htm#ind
2. Sperling’s Best Places, Mississippi: http://www.bestplaces.net/state/mississippi
3. Projections Central: http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
4. Bureau of Economic Analysis: http://www.bea.gov/