The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) within the U.S. Department of Education Institute of Education Studies is the national center for education statistics. Let’s take a quick look at the 13 schools that produced the most paralegals as seen in IPEDS reports for the year 2012.
Four of the schools are in Florida; the rest are in California, Indiana, Texas, New York, Iowa, Michigan, Georgia, Washington, and Arizona. Kaplan University’s Davenport Campus also offers online and hybrid programs and has the largest number of paralegal graduates, at 842.
It is no surprise that the state with the most paralegal graduates and schools in the top-13 list is Florida. Behind only California and New York, Florida also has the third most paralegal jobs, per capita, in the nation. Students considering a Florida school can select from Everest University in a mid-sized town like Brandon on the Gulf Coast, or stay inland with two schools to choose from in Orlando. Famous for Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Studios Florida, and Sea World, Orlando has grown to over 2 million people, offering not only all the amenities and entertainment a student could want, but also many paralegal positions upon graduation. Orlando and Tampa areas showed over 6,000 jobs in 2012 reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). On the Atlantic Coast lies Ft. Lauderdale, a metropolitan area of over 5 million only a stone’s throw from Miami. There were almost 8,000 paralegal jobs between these two metropolitan areas in 2012.
- Four schools are in communities with populations of less than 50,000. Davenport in Iowa and Farmington Hills in Michigan are mid-sized cities, with the remainder being larger metropolitan areas.
- The greater majority of students are choosing associate degree programs.
- Paralegal programs at six of the schools are ABA approved.
- Kaplan offers the most extensive online programs.
- Four schools are community colleges, four schools offer four-year degrees, and one specializes in legal education.
- Whereas the great majority of graduates of these 13 paralegal programs were women, the University of Central Florida seems to be challenging the stereotype and in 2012 over one-third of their graduates were men.
Schools That Produce the Most Paralegals
- Davenport, Iowa842Paralegal GradsABA Approved$43,210Annual mean wage for paralegals in Iowa*
- Orlando, Florida297Paralegal GradsABA Approved$46,500Annual mean wage for paralegals in Florida*Paralegal program: Bachelor’s Degree
- San Diego, California264Paralegal GradsABA Approved$58,570Annual mean wage for paralegals in California*Paralegal program: Post-Baccalaureate Certificate
- Ft. Lauderdale, Florida179Paralegal GradsABA Approved$46,500Annual mean wage for paralegals in Florida*
- Indianapolis, Indiana171Paralegal GradsABA Approved$39,620Annual mean wage for paralegals in Indiana*
- Brandon, Florida166Paralegal GradsABA Approved$46,500Annual mean wage for paralegals in Florida*
- Lynnwood, Washington148Paralegal GradsABA Approved$51,730Annual mean wage for paralegals in Washington*
- Phoenix, Arizona138Paralegal GradsABA Approved$47,520Annual mean wage for paralegals in Arizona*
- Houston, Texas138Paralegal GradsABA Approved$50,630Annual mean wage for paralegals in Texas*
- South Orlando, Florida112Paralegal GradsABA Approved$46,500Annual mean wage for paralegals in Florida*
- Farmington Hills, Michigan111Paralegal GradsABA Approved$49,250Annual mean wage for paralegals in Michigan*
- Garden City, New York105Paralegal GradsABA Approved$53,570Annual mean wage for paralegals in New York*
- Morrow, Georgia97Paralegal GradsABA Approved$50,540Annual mean wage for paralegals in Georgia*
*Bureau of Labor Statistics May 2012 Reports