As a Paralegal major, you may wish to investigate membership in any number of professional organizations, including the following:
The American Alliance of Paralegals, Inc. (AAPI)
Dedicated to advancing the paralegal profession by focusing on the individual paralegal. Its goals are to establish minimum educational criteria; adhere to ethical standards; provide networking opportunities; create a resource center; and associate with national and local organizations.
The Association of Legal Administrators (ALA)
Provides support to professionals involved in the management of law firms, corporate legal departments and government legal agencies. Its mission is to: 1) improve the quality of management in legal services organizations; 2) promote and enhance the competence and professionalism of legal administrators and all members of the management team; and 3) represent professional legal management and managers to the legal community and to the community at large.
The Legal Assistant Management Association (LAMA)
Promotes the development, professional standing and visibility of legal assistant management professionals. Its goals include: (1) to be the primary provider of information and educational resources on legal assistant management; (2) to promote the participation of legal assistant managers in forums that deal with the legal profession; (3) to advocate the legal assistant manager's viewpoint on issues affecting the legal profession; (4) to promote the value of the legal assistant manager's role in the delivery of legal services; (5) to establish a strong communication network within the association and with the legal community; and (6) to ensure LAMA's vitality as a professional association.
Maryland Association of Paralegals, Inc. (MAP)
A voluntary, non-profit organization formed in 1974. The Association is comprised of paralegals from all areas of law, both the private and the public sectors. The purposes of the organization include: (1) to promote and protect the general professional interests of paralegals in the State of Maryland; (2) to involve paralegals in the shaping of guidelines affecting the regulation and development of the paralegal profession; (3) to foster continuing education and be a resource center for career enhancement and educational information; (4) to participate in, sponsor and conduct research, seminars, investigations and studies relative to the paralegal profession; and (5) to keep paralegals informed of national concerns/developments that affect the profession.
The National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA)
The leading professional association for legal assistants and paralegals, providing continuing education and professional development programs. Incorporated in 1975, NALA is an integral part of the legal community, working to improve the quality and effectiveness of the delivery of legal services. The National Association of Legal Assistants is composed of over 18,000 paralegals, through individual members and through its 90 state and local affiliated associations.
Association for legal professionals. NALS offers professional development by providing continuing legal education, certifications, information, and training to those choosing the legal services industry as their career. NALS members represent every area of this industry from paralegals and legal assistants to legal administrators and office managers. Because of this diversity and an openness to welcome all members of the industry, NALS offers a broad spectrum of expertise to make the programs offered valuable to all members of the legal services industry.
The National Federation of Paralegal Associations (NFPA)
A non-profit professional organization representing more than 17,000 paralegals in the United States and Canada. Through its work on the issues of regulation, ethics, and education, NFPA is committed to ensuring a world-wide standard of excellence for the paralegal profession. Toward this goal, NFPA pledges to assist paralegals in enhancing their contacts internationally to promote successful resources, employment opportunities, and shared technology.