Student Stories: Julie Van Dyke

Julie Van Dyke


Major: Paralegal Studies

After being a stay-at-home mom for 13 years, Julie Van Dyke was ready to re-enter the workforce but unsure of what to do.

She decided to enroll in Introduction to Paralegal Studies at College of DuPage, where she had taken classes on and off for years.

“From what I knew about paralegals—which wasn’t a ton!—I felt that my attention to detail and organizational skills would be very useful in that type of work, so I thought it would be a good fit for me,” she said. “I’ve always enjoyed taking classes at COD and believe it is such a great education for a very reasonable cost. It is also very close by and there are a lot of options for off-site learning.”

Van Dyke discovered a supportive group of educators and students in the Paralegal Studies program.

“I have truly enjoyed the social aspects of the Paralegal Club and have made some wonderful friends,” she said. “I also know that the program is great for networking and helping with career goals. I got my current job through a referral from one of my professors. I have learned so much while working, and that experience is priceless.”

In 2020, the Paralegal Studies faculty recognized Van Dyke for excellence by discipline during the annual Celebration of Academic Excellence. After graduating with her Associate in Applied Science degree, she is considering working toward a bachelor’s degree.

“Now that I have returned to school, I remember how much I love to learn,” she said. “As for my career goals, I have already reached my first one. I am so fortunate to be working in the legal field and I really enjoy my job.”

Having found success in the Paralegal Studies program at COD, Van Dyke advises others to do the same.

“College of DuPage is such a smart choice, and I cannot say enough good things about the Paralegal Studies program.”

More about the Paralegal Studies program