Working as a legal assistant requires a number of skills, many of which can be learned on the job or in school, but many successful legal assistants, and the attorneys they support, will tell you that one of the very best aspects of paralegal education is natural instinct.
When studying for a formal paralegal education, there will be many opportunities to learn the workings of the legal and judicial systems that drive almost every industry in the country. This information will prove invaluable over the course of a career but it's the paralegal's natural instinct for putting all the pieces together in the most effective way that is often considered the most valuable asset he or she has to offer an employer.
It's also natural instinct working together with paralegal education that drives a successful paralegal to sort through all those pieces and determine which ones are pertinent and which ones only add background information or no functional information at all.
A paralegal education provides the basic knowledge from which to build a successful career but it's natural aptitudes that lead a paralegal into a particular area of the industry. Some paralegals choose to work in large corporations while others prefer smaller law firms.
Large or small, a paralegal education can help establish a career in industries as varied as the medical industry, education, entertainment, and real estate. In fact, every industry that relies on contracts also relies on valid legal expertise and guidance.
A truly useful way to tailor a paralegal education into the field that best suits a graduate's natural aptitudes and interests is to explore the industry during the internship period that is usually included as part of the formalized education process. Try working in the entertainment industry, for example, or the environmental, to see if that suits you and you may discover that another area of the industry is really a better fit.
Working in a busy law firm is also a good way to determine if a paralegal education is best utilized in such a setting or would a more independent approach to the profession be better suited to an individual's personality. Many freelance paralegals love the freedom they have working with a variety of law firms.
A solid paralegal education is a great start but it can be enhanced tremendously when it's paired with a natural instinct for the work.