Approved by the American Bar Association
Paralegal Program

Paralegal Program

Research issues, draft briefs or contracts, and provide vital support for attorneys. Paralegals—also known as legal assistants—perform in-depth legal work and serve as key members of legal teams.

Start Your Someday Today!

Fill out our inquiry form for more program information, general questions, or register for an upcoming information session.

Strong Demand & Good Pay

Paralegal is a high growth, high demand field, and the OCC program is an excellent entry point to the legal profession. Michigan Lawyers Weekly recently named Oakland Community College’s Paralegal program first in the publication’s paralegal education category.

Classes prepare students with the practical skills they need in a law firm in an extremely cost-effective manner.  For students qualifying for the Michigan Reconnect program it may even be tuition free.

Paralegals assist lawyers in nearly every aspect of law practice.  Paralegals work for law firms, corporate legal departments, and government agencies. They collaborate with lawyers on:

  • Legal and factual research
  • Court and agency filings
  • Contracts, mortgages, and legal agreements
  • Trial documents, evidence, and witness preparation
  • Real estate closings and title examinations

A paralegal is not licensed to practice law. A paralegal is bound to the same ethical principles as a lawyer. Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public except as permitted by law. 

For students choosing to go on to law school, Paralegal education gives them the practical skills that law schools often overlook, but employers require.

For more information on the career, pay, and program, see our FAQ page.

Job Market Outlook

Upcoming Paralegal Events

Paralegal Information Session
June 18, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM @ Virtual Event
Paralegal Monthly Lunch & Learn Event - Presenter: The Phillip Charles Group, Staffing Agency
June 28, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM @ Virtual Event
Paralegal Information Session
July 17, 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM @ Virtual Event
Paralegal Information Session
August 15, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM @ Virtual Event
Paralegal Information Session
September 23, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM @ Virtual Event
Paralegal Information Session
October 18, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM @ Virtual Event
Paralegal Information Session
November 20, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM @ Virtual Event

See all paralegal events


Hear from OCC Paralegal Faculty

A Paralegal Program Built for You

Whether you’re new to college or changing careers, OCC offers a paralegal option made for you.

Paralegal Associate Degree

Choose the paralegal associate degree if you don’t already have a college degree. 

You’ll complete 63 credits hours of major requirements, supporting courses, electives, and general education. Full-time students can complete the program in two years.

You’ll graduate with an Associate in Applied Science degree, fully prepared to:

  • Work as a paralegal. You’ll be ready to start your career right away.
  • Transfer and earn a bachelor’s degree. Our transfer agreements with Eastern Michigan University, Madonna University and Oakland University let you complete your bachelor’s degree in just one more year.
  • Go to law school. While most law schools require a bachelor’s degree, our paralegal program provides marketable skills that surpass any pre-law major.

Paralegal Post-Bachelor Certificate

Choose the paralegal certificate if you’ve earned a bachelor’s degree from a four-year college but want to take your career in a new direction. OCC’s 34-credit certificate program prepares you to become a paralegal in the shortest possible time. Complete six core courses, an elective, and three supporting courses in as few as nine months.

  • OCC’s paralegal program is approved by the American Bar Association, the national voice of the legal profession.
  • Our associate degree and certificate options offer perfect preparation for first-time college students or career changers.
  • Recommended for all paralegal students, our internships offer real-world experience.
  • Special topics courses taught by practicing attorneys provide in-depth insight into areas like criminal law, family law, real estate, and more.
  • OCC’s focus on support and success connects students with academic and personal counseling, personalized transfer planning, and more.
  • See paralegal FAQs and Goal & Objectives for additional details on the paralegal program.
Did you know?
“The OCC paralegal program's post-baccalaureate track gave me an opportunity to leverage a degree that I wasn't using to earn a powerful certificate and jump-start a promising career in a stable, growing field. The affordable instruction was taught by experienced, accessible professors who prepared me for work in the field”

— Joe M., OCC graduate and paralegal
Joe M


Take the Next Steps

Ready to begin your paralegal studies? Get started now:

  1. Apply to OCC. If you’re not already an OCC student, create a profile and complete our online application. On the application select the degree program ‘Paralegal Applicant (PLG.APP)’. Existing OCC students can update their academic program using the Student Update Information Request form.
  2. Email the Paralegal Director. We'll set you up with a zoom interview to discuss program options and develop a custom program plan. 

I am interested in the Paralegal Program

For more information about OCC's Paralegal Program complete the form below

Contact Information

Sara Bowman
Paralegal Program Director
Phone: (248) 522-3627

OCC's Paralegal Program is approved by the American Bar Association

American Bar Association

OCC's Paralegal Program is a member of the American Association for Paralegal Education


OCC's Paralegal Program is voted #1 in Michigan Lawyers Weekly Reader Rankings

Lawyers Weekly