Welcome New Paralegal Students!

6 Jan

Are you a new paralegal student? Here are some tips for success in your first semester.

Keep up with your reading. Don’t try to absorb material by cramming at the last minute.

Keep your grades as high as you can. It ensures you know the subject material, and also helps with financial aid, and transferring to a four year institution later on.

Understand what the prerequisites are for your plan of study. “Prereqs” are classes you must take in order to advance to a higher level class. For instance, in order to take Legal Research & Writing II (LEX 121) you must first successfully complete Legal Research & Writing I (LEX 120) with a C or better. You will need to earn a C or better in any prereq class.

Get those math classes under your belt. You may have to take a placement test to determine which math class to take first. Do not wait until your second year to do this. Get started on your math courses now.

Manage your plan of study. Plan ahead so that you know what courses you are taking and when. Remember that while many General Education classes are repeated in both Fall and Spring semesters, each of your paralegal courses are offered just once each year.

Once you’ve registered for a semester, immediately start planning the next one. You’re required to contact your advisor every semester to have your registration restriction lifted, and your first advising meeting will likely be face-to-face before you can do online advising. Check in with your advisor no later than one week prior to your registration date.

The paralegal program coursework involves a lot of analytical reading and very clear writing. The better your English (ENG) grades are, the better off you will be as a student and in your paralegal career.

Use proper English and formal formatting when contacting your instructors and advisor. Using “text-ese” won’t cut it. It only takes a few seconds more to write a note properly. Add in your student ID number for even faster response. Make sure you use your college email account. And remember that instructors have a home life, so they may not respond immediately at night and on weekends.

If you run into difficulties in a class, contact your instructor immediately. Things rarely get better on their own, so be proactive when it comes to problem solving, and put your instructor on your problem-solving team.

Stay positive. What you think about, your bring about!


NCPA Scholarship Opportunity

1 Dec



The North Carolina Paralegal Association, Inc. (“NCPA”) will be sponsoring its annual Student Scholarship Essay Contest opening October 1, 2015. Any paralegal student enrolled in an accredited North Carolina paralegal educational program is eligible. An essay competition will be the basis of the scholarship.

Essay Topic: “I have chosen to be a paralegal…”
Essay Requirements: The essays must be typed, double spaced, and on letter sized paper. They may not exceed two pages in length. Please be aware that spelling, grammar and punctuation will be taken into consideration, so please review your work before submitting. The essays will be judged anonymously, so do not reference your name or your paralegal program within the body of the essay.

Awards**: First Place: $400.00
Second Place: $300.00
Third Place: $200.00
Fourth Place: $100.00

In addition to the scholarship, all awards include one free student registration to NCPA’s 36th Annual Seminar and Meeting to be held March 17-19, 2016 in Wrightsville Beach.

Send your typewritten essays by January 1, 2016 to:
Charlotte A. Ward, CLA, NCCP
Student/School Relations Chair
PO Box 8680
Greensboro, NC 27419
Please contact Charlotte A. Ward at (919) 906-1822 with any questions.

**All award scholarship checks will be made payable to the winners’ educational facility. Please note that winners for the previous year are ineligible.**

Managing End-of-Semester Stress

30 Nov


What is stress?

Stress is a NORMAL emotional and physical response to events in our lives, resulting in unpleasant feelings such as anxiety, tension, and strain.  Stress is any type of response we have to any kind of psychological, social or physical demand that has been placed on us.  Stress can be just as much physical as it is mental and it definitely can take a heavy toll on our mental health and overall well-being.  Stress is a very serious problem in our society and many people end up missing class, work, and/or visiting their physician or the hospital because of the medical consequences associated with it.   As exams, final papers, final projects, and the holidays draw near, students often feel high levels of stress.

What are some of the symptoms of stress?

  • Nervous movements or shaking
  • Heart palpitations or a rapid heartbeat
  • Heartburn, nausea, or stomach pain
  • Tight muscles and muscle aches
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Anger & irritation
  • Poor memory and/or concentration
  • Mental confusion

But, there’s help! 

 What are some helpful strategies for relieving or managing stress?

  1. Practice good time management and study skills
  2. Don’t wait until the last minute to study for an exam or begin an assignment
  3. Regularly block out a few hours each week for relaxation and rejuvenation
  4. Take time to get and stay in touch with your spiritual self
  5. Learn to say “No” to demands that aren’t a necessity
  6. Take care of the physical you
  7. Practice visualization, self-talk, and deep breathing exercises
  8. Schedule a confidential appointment with a counselor in Durham Tech’s Counseling Services office (Wynn Building, Room 1209)
  9. Seek professional help from a licensed mental health provider.

Take charge of the changes in your life, pay attention to the warning signs of stress, and take good care of yourself.  Build up your resistance to stress by staying on top of assignments and by practicing positive physical and mental health habits and strategies.

Be sure to pat yourself on the back for what you’ve accomplished so far this year, and Best Wishes to you as you finish the semester!

 Durham Technical Community College

Counseling Services

Wynn Building, Room 1209    919.536.7207

Spring 2016 Registration

2 Nov

registered earlyPriority registration for Spring 2016 classes is under way. Remember that your advisor must clear you to register each semester, so contact your advisor at least a week in advance of your registration date.

Social Media Tattoos

16 Oct

Here’s a great TED talk on “social media tattoos”–the information about you on your social media posts that lives on and on. You might be surprised to find out just how much people can learn from things other than what you actually post.

Lunchtime Leadership Learning Lab Wed. Oct. 7

5 Oct

Dear Durham Tech faculty, staff and students:

We invite you to join us for our next Lunchtime Leadership Learning Lab this Wednesday, October 7 from noon- 1:30 p.m. in the Barbara Baker Student Activities Room, 1114 Wynn Center. Student Senate President and Student Leadership Development Program participant, Jimena Ramos-Santana will be presenting a workshop titled:

“Is it Urgent or Important? Tips for Managing your Time.”
Time management is really life management. This workshop will enable participants to become more proactive and use a range of techniques to prioritize, plan, and control workloads more effectively. Learn to identify “time stealers” – what they are and how to avoid them.

We invite all students, faculty, and staff to join us. Please bring a sandwich and the Student Senate will provide the chips and drinks. We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday.

Student Senate and Office of Student Activities

Fall 2015 Career Services Workshops

3 Sep

Resume Building Workshop(Limited to 30 students)

Open to students in their last two semesters of a program – check with your instructor to make sure that they have not scheduled this workshop to be held in your class at a different time.

Tuesday, October 6, 11am-12:30pm

To register go here.

Linked In Workshops: (Limited to 25 students)

Bring a copy of your resume and get ready to set up your Linked In account. We will discuss how to set up an account as well as some tips on networking using this application.

Wednesday, September 9, 10am-11:30am, register here.

Thursday, November 12, 10am-11:30am, register here.

Interview Skills/Resume Building Workshop: (Limited to 40 students)

Open to students in their last two semesters of a program – check with your instructor to make sure that they have not scheduled this workshop to be held in your class at a different time.

Wednesday, November 18, 10am-12pm
, register here.

Resume Reviews: Students in the last two semesters of a CTP* or HT program may submit their completed resumes via email for review. Submit your resume in a Word document to kentc@durhamtech.edu. Reviews may take up to 7 days to be returned with suggested edits/comments. The last date that resume reviews will be accepted for this semester is December 3rd, so please get them in as early as possible.

For more information regarding possible one-on-one mock interviews or other career services, please contact Carla Kent at kentc@durhamtech.edu.

*CTP includes paralegal technology students