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Metropolitan Community College Criminal Justice Program

Paralegal Practice

Program Overview

MCC Campus(es): MCC-Penn Valley
Program Contact: Maggie Goodman, JD, 816.604.4007

In our well-established program, you'll get a combination of a broad knowledge of substantive and procedural law and the specific skills required to be a productive member of today's legal team. You'll learn legal research, legal writing and ethics. The program finishes with an internship class where you'll spend a semester actually working in the legal environment under the direct supervision of a lawyer.

Degree(s) and/or Certificate(s)

Paralegals - also called legal assistants - are a part of an exciting field that gives opportunities for non-lawyers to perform many of the same tasks as lawyers. They assume a growing range of tasks in legal offices that can include:

  • preparing for closings, hearings, trials and corporate meetings.
  • investigating the facts of cases.
  • identifying appropriate laws, judicial decisions and legal articles.
  • preparing written reports for attorneys.
  • helping prepare legal arguments, draft pleadings and motions to be filed with the court.
  • obtaining affidavits.
  • organizing and tracking files of case documents.
  • drafting contracts, mortgages and separation agreements.
  • assisting in preparing tax returns, establishing trust funds and planning estates.
  • searching legal literature stored in computer databases and on CD-ROM.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to earn a certificate or degree?

It takes two years to get an associate in applied science degree if attending full-time.

Will my credits transfer to other colleges or universities?

Yes. Most of our credits transfer easily. Check with your advisor or counselor and the transfer institution to make sure.

What does it take to succeed in this work?

Some of the characteristics needed for this career:

  • Attention to detail.
  • Able to document and present findings and opinions to the supervising attorney.
  • Understand legal terminology and have good research and investigative skills.
  • Know the operation and applications of computers in legal research and litigation support.
  • Stay informed of new developments in the laws that affect your area of practice.
  • Courteous.
  • Uphold the ethical standards of the legal profession.

What are the advantages of taking classes at MCC?

We deliver the most cost-effective career preparation in Kansas City, MO. We are a publicly funded college with quality programs and full accreditation.

  • Our faculty includes working judges, lawyers and paralegals.
  • Our faulty have both expertise in the law and experience working directly with paralegals.
  • We emphasize modern technology: you'll have access to legal library resources as well as computer based research tools such as Westlaw.
  • Our graduates are in demand.

Named Best In State by Paralegal EDU

Paralegal EDU is a website developed to serve as a dedicated resource for aspiring and existing Paralegals.  Their mission is to help students in identify high quality programs available in their geographic area.

  • Provides Valuable Field Experience in the Form of an Internship
  • Provides Outstanding Career Assistance and Student Support Services
  • Promotes Educational Excellence as a Member of the American Association for Paralegal Education (AAfPE)

“In just two years, Metropolitan Community College will take you from student to practicing paralegal in a dynamic law environment. The AAS in Paralegal Practice here is also easily transferred to the University of Central Missouri Technology Management’s 2+2 Bachelor of Science program, if desired."

"There’s plenty of reasons why this program made our list of the top associate degree programs: a comprehensive course of study in contemporary legal topics, experienced instructors with years of law experience (many are practicing lawyers, judges, and paralegals), and an internship designed to round out your course of study and prepare you through a real-world law experience."

This well-established program has a long history of producing competent paralegals who have achieved success in the field!”


American Association for Paralegal Education (AAfPE).