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North-East is first to offer new paralegal foundation degree
A NORTH-EAST college is the first in the UK to offer a new kind of paralegal qualification.
Newcastle College has announced the start of its innovative Paralegal Foundation Degree, which has been developed in conjunction with the National Association of Licensed Paralegals (NALP).
NALP is the only paralegal organisation in England and Wales that is recognised by Ofqual as a qualifications awarding organisation.
The two year degree will also provide students with the NALP's level four diploma in paralegal studies.
Employers will now have the opportunity to train their staff or hire employees that are fully trained, safe in the knowledge that the qualification has been endorsed by NALP.
Paralegals are important fee-earning members of a legal team, playing key roles in the legal process. Whilst not a qualified solicitor or barrister, a paralegal is qualified to perform substantive legal work and their duties will take them from office to courtroom, from clients to conferences, from the law library to the negotiating table.
Amanda Hamilton, CEO of NALP, said ''Many organisations, not only law firms, within commerce and industry need and benefit from employees who have a broad knowledge of law and procedure, together with an expertise applicable to their particular sector.
"This Foundation Degree is the only NALP endorsed degree in the UK and will open up opportunities for the trained paralegals to work within many sectors, including financial services, sanking, the retail sector, export and the media."
Helen Hall is a legal clerk with Winn Solicitors in Newcastle and is the first learner to sign up to the new course, she said : "I am really looking forward to starting the new course in September. I feel it will really help me to gain the skills and knowledge I need to have a successful career as a paralegal."
Barbara King, director of the School of Health and Enterprise at Newcastle College, said, ''We are very excited by this exclusive partnership with NALP and this new offering which is not available in any other part of the country.
"This course will allow students to acquire top quality, industry standard training & expertise that will open up doorways into key employers and new careers, whilst at the same time befitting business across the North East and the UK''.
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