Establishing an Identity as a Profession

Andrew Sullivan of The Daily Dishblog on Atlantic.com, posts a letter from a reader regarding the work and other benefits he is receiving as a self-employed paralegal and project manager as a result of the federal economic stimulus package. While, in my opinion, he makes a good point, I took note of it primarily because of what it says about the paralegal profession. The first couple of paragraphs are excerpted below and the link to the full letter is here.

You’ll note that he does not actually say anything about the profession. However, he does identify himself as a professional and then writes quite professionally. As I’ve noted before, the more members of the paralegal profession become publically visible in a professional way, the better for the profession. Paralegals do, or at least ought, to possess superior abilty to think critically and analytically, and to express themselves articulately both in writing and orally. This is something the public seldom gets to see in the context of the work done by paralegals in a law office. There are, however, many opportunities for paralegals to display these talents, together with the legal profession’s propensity for objectivity and logic, for the public while contributing to the public debate of important issues.

In any case, here’s the excerpt:

I would like to echo the comments of your recent VFYR writer, the one who “never gave much thought to social programs, frankly, I neither needed or qualified for them.” This is true of me as well.

I am a self-employed paralegal and project manager, specializing in contract and IP-related law. This year was going very slowly for me, as it was for my clients, until several months ago, when one of my clients was suddenly overcome with demand for its datacom product as a direct result of stimulus funds becoming available to their customers (who were funded to deliver broadband services to *their* rural customers.) Now I have more work than I can handle

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