Caldwell Community College Student Wins 1st Place in NCPA Essay Contest

Way to go, Tammy!

Congratulations to Tammy Pyles, a paralegal student at Caldwell Community College & Technical Institute, which has campuses in both Hudson and Boone, North Carolina. She won first place in the 2011 N.C. Paralegal Association Scholarship Essay Contest.

The Charlotte Observer reports:

She will receive a $400 scholarship, a student membership in the organization and free registration at the group’s annual seminar in Cary. Her essay also will be published in a future issue of the NCPA Forum magazine.

Pyles wrote about growing up one of six children in a blue-collar family with a strong work ethic. A Pittsburgh native, she moved to Caldwell County in 2002.

According to CCC&TI’s press release, Pyles enrolled in the paralegal program when she found herself without a job. Her decision to return to school full-time was a family affair, and everyone is making sacrifices so that she can earn her degree.


Paralegal program director Amy Hall describes Pyles as an “exemplary student” that “brings a wealth of knowledge to the classroom and is a joy to teach.” Pyles hopes to work in a government or county agency, or court system, ideally advocating for children.

Other winners of the essay contest are:

  • Tania Rodriguez, Central Carolina Community College (2nd Place – $300)
  • Betty Harmon, Johnston County Community College (3rd Place – $200)
  • Kathy Glasson, Durham Technical Community College (4th Place – $100)

Again, Practical Paralegalism congratulates all of the essay contest winners.

I look forward to reading Tammy’s essay in the NCPA Forum. If you are a paralegal student, local and state paralegal and legal support staff associations often sponsor annual scholarship contests. Not only will winning one offset some of your educational expenses, but these kinds of awards and honors look great on an entry-level resume. Winning essays also make excellent writing samples for your portfolio.

Sources: CCC&TI; NCPA; Charlotte Observer

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