By Angela Mennecke
College of DuPage Paralegal Studies student Linda Chans’ essay about a court case that revolved around the concept that words can kill earned her a $500 scholarship awarded by the Lambda Epsilon Chi (LEX) national paralegal honor society.
Chan won the national scholarship essay contest for the second consecutive year, which COD Paralegal Studies Coordinator Sally Fairbank says is unprecedented.
“Linda has made the department extremely proud by earning this prestigious scholarship two years in a row, and I am certain that her future accomplishments will continue to embody the goals and ideals of COD.”
The American Association for Paralegal Education’s (AAfPE) annual award attracts applications from nearly 200 universities and colleges throughout the nation. The LEX honors society awards only five of the national scholarships annually.
The award selection is judged on 500- to 750-word essays on a topic selected by the AAfPE. Chan’s scholarship-winning essay deals with the Michelle Carter case, a court case that took national attention due to what several legal experts said set a new precedent in which sending text messages, in certain cases, can be enough for criminal liability. Chan’s essay will be published in an upcoming issue of the award-winning AAfPE magazine The Legal Educator.
With the competition for the scholarship tight, Chan was pleasantly surprised when she received the news that she won the LEX scholarship again.
“I was told that there were more than 170 National Paralegal Honor Society chapters throughout the United States, so it was an exhilarating moment to find out that I beat out the steep competition again.”
A graduate of Loyola University, Chen is working on her Paralegal Studies certificate through COD and plans to pursue a career in the legal field upon completion. Chan says she has received lifelong skills from the American Bar Association-approved program at the College.
“All the required writing in the classes in the Paralegal Studies program at COD has definitely improved my writing capabilities because I have won several essay awards since being enrolled in the program,” she said. “As a bonus, I’ve met some great people and made new friends. I would definitely recommend COD to other students pursuing a career as a paralegal.”
The Paralegal Studies program at College of DuPage provides students with the knowledge, training, skills, values and attitude they need to become highly competent, ethical paralegals who will make a positive contribution to the advancement of the paralegal profession. Students gain knowledge and skills in a broad range of topics, including criminal law and procedure, ethics, law office organization and technology, legal research and writing, and litigation. In addition, a required paralegal practicum provides students with crucial hands-on practical experience in the paralegal profession.