The San Jacinto College 2012 paralegal honor society inductees include, from left, front row: Lupe Diosdado (Hobby Airport area), Noemy Garcia (South Houston), and Cynthia Shortle (Seabrook); middle row: Brenda Melton (Pearland), Lamica King (Channelview), and Johnita Johnson (Meyerland); back row: Rhonda Frank (Baytown), Silvia Querales (Southeast Houston), and Timothy Wallace (North Shore). Photo credit: Rob Vanya, San Jacinto College marketing department.
Paralegal honor society inducts new members
Rob Vanya, April 19, 2012
HOUSTON – Nine San Jacinto College (SJC) students were recently inducted into the College’s paralegal honor society, Lambda Epsilon Chi (LEX), signifying the high academic performance of the students.
The requirements for LEX induction are stringent. A student must maintain a 3.5 grade point average and demonstrate superior academic performance, and be an active member of the College’s paralegal club. In addition, in order to apply for LEX induction, a student must complete two-thirds of the College’s paralegal program requirement by completing 30 credit hours of legal specialty courses, and nine credit hours of general education courses.
SJC’s paralegal program ranks among the top 100 in North America, is approved by the American Bar Association, and has earned exemplary status by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. “This program is considered among the best in the nation, so I guess that makes you students who are being inducted into the honor society the best of the best,” commented Kevin Morris, SJC North’s business department chair.
The keynote speaker at the induction ceremony was Marleyn Treviño, who graduated from SJC’s paralegal program in 2004, and was inducted into the College’s LEX chapter in 2010. “If you cannot find a position in the area of law you would like, it’s not a bad idea to accept any paralegal position that comes your way, just to get your foot in the door,” she told the inductees. Treviño has been working as a paralegal in pharmaceutical litigation since 2008. “While I was in college it never crossed my mind to work in the pharmaceutical area,” she commented. “But now I love it. It encompasses two fields I have a passion for – legal and medical.”
Treviño noted that trusted paralegals become a critical part of a legal team. “I am now researching 150 cases and will write up summaries explaining which cases I feel we should pursue,” she said. “The attorneys will make their decisions about taking cases based on that research. It shows that our work as paralegals is very valuable to the firm.”
Ernest Davila, paralegal program director at SJC North, says that paralegal is a fairly lucrative career field, and one that is predicted to stay strong in coming years. According to the most recent statistics available from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary of paralegals is $46,680 ($22.44 per hour). The BLS predicts that nationwide, the paralegal profession is expected to grow by 18 percent from 2010 to 2020.
Graduates of SJC’s paralegal program generally have no problem finding jobs. During the past 10 years, the job placement rate for the College’s paralegal graduates has ranged from 90 to 95 percent.
San Jacinto College offers a two-year paralegal associate degree program at the North Campus, as well as distance learning paralegal courses that are available online.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. The Achieving the Dream Leader College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of 30,000 students in more than 200 degree and certificate options, including university transfer and career preparation. Students also benefit from the College’s job training programs, renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $630 million each year to the Texas workforce. San Jacinto College. Your Goals. Your College.
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