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'Law Day, U.S.A.' Has Special Meaning for Southwest Floridians; FGCU Dedicates Legal Studies Program to Benefit Students
4/29/2002

FORT MYERS, FL - Every year, Congress designates May 1 as “Law Day, U.S.A.” and to help celebrate, Florida Gulf Coast University invites the public and the press to dedicate FGCU’s Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies program at 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 1 in front of Academic Building III with President William C. Merwin.

FGCU designed the legal studies curriculum to provide an in-depth understanding of the legal system as it relates to laws, courts, clients and lawyers. Career tracks in criminal law, litigation, probate law, family law, law office management and international law are under development.

The program prepares graduates for advancement in law-related professions, particularly as legal assistants or paralegals, a field that the Florida Department of Labor and Employment Statistics expects to increase by 67 percent by 2008. The Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation says the paralegal field is the state’s seventh fastest growing occupation and paralegal job openings grew 22.5 percent from 2000 to 2001, from 17,801 to 21,807.

FGCU’s legal studies program, which requires 48 hours in upper division coursework to complete the BS degree, is available via traditional classroom or through distance learning and encompasses both generalist and specialist courses as recommended by the American Bar Association.

Students are prepared for certification exams, including the Certified Legal Assistant exam sponsored by the National Association of Legal Assistants and the Paralegal Advanced Competency Examination sponsored by the National Federation of Paralegal Associations Inc.

A Congressional resolution in 1961 set aside the first day of May as Law Day, U.S.A. The day is a special time of celebration by the American people in appreciation of their liberties, the reaffirmation of their loyalty to the United States, their rededication to the ideals of equality and to justice under law in their relations, and for the cultivation of respect for law. This year’s theme is “Celebrate Your Freedom: Assuring Equal Justice for All.”

For more information about the dedication, the legal studies program or Law Day, contact program coordinator Bob Diotalevi at (941) 590-7817.

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