Enjoying Her Classes and Experience

Enjoying Her Classes and Experience:

Miranda Langford’s Time at ANU

Hard work and dedication are not foreign subjects for Paralegal student, Miranda Langford. After medically retiring from the Army, Miranda became a stay-at-home mother. However, when some legal issues arose within her family, she got a close view of the legal field. Now that her two children are close to flying from the nest, Miranda wanted to pursue her new interest in the legal field. And rather than having to wait several years to gain experience to get where she wanted, Miranda turned to American National University’s online, ABA-approved Paralegal associate degree program. Her commitment to her studies led her to becoming Term 233’s Paralegal Student of the Term!

When choosing where to go for her education, Miranda found ANU through the Department of Veteran Affairs. Between ANU and one other school, she felt that our program was a better fit for her life and goals. And as a veteran, Miranda was able to use her GI Bill benefits to finance her education at ANU. Describing using those benefits, she said, “it was an easy process. It’s just [ANU] and the VA talking back and forth is what it boils down to basically.” She was able to apply with the VA, and ANU took care of the rest. And while she started at ANU later in 2022, she had to withdraw from the program. However, getting back into her education at the beginning of 2023 was easy for her. “They made it easy,” she said, “they were understanding.” Her short time at ANU so far has shown her that our staff and faculty are there to help her earn her education.

Her paralegal courses are preparing her to enter the legal field. “The resources we get through Lexus have been hugely helpful! Because I know that’s what I’ll be working with!” Not only are the materials and courses beneficial to her education, but her professors are helping her develop as a paralegal as well.

“A good many of my teachers are like, ‘this is a real world scenario, this is what happened, this is what you need to do, and this is how it should play out.’ So, seeing that in the real-world, at least a portion of it, has been real helpful.”

Her Paralegal Student of the Term nomination came from both Paralegal Dean Wendy Notz and Paralegal Instructor Sheri Clark. And Miranda has enjoyed classes with both instructors and their approach to teaching her the ins-and-outs of being a paralegal. In a few classes with them, Miranda was one or one of two students enrolled. And that gave her personalized attention to help her succeed in not only her education, but her future career. “I really enjoyed it because it gave us a lot of one-on-one time. And [allowed them] to talk about their experiences and their outlook on things. I enjoyed both of them,” she said, “they both have really personalities and stories. They both have a high standard [for students] and that really helped me from becoming complacent.” Miranda describes an instance where she was struggling with a concept. She was able to email Wendy Notz back and forth until she understood – and Dean Notz answered with patience and kindness. On her email exchanges with Dean Notz, “I definitely gave her a run for her money on that term! But she’s great – all of my instructors have been.”

For her future goals, Miranda is adamant about earning her associate degree in Paralegal studies. She wants to work on continually earning certifications and going as high in the field as she can go. “Somebody asked me one day, ‘you going to law school?’ And I was like ‘maybe? I don’t know – we’ll cross that bridge way later!’” She really aspires to being beneficial to a legal team.

“I would obviously recommend someone [to ANU]!”

Her advice to new students: “Figure out what works best for you – figure out your home life schedule. That will be the biggest thing… Find what you like to do, something will eventually click.” With her advice, she describes that online education at ANU has changed how she approaches education as well.

“This is the first time I’ve really enjoyed college and the classes – that’s what I like about ANU, the program and the structure of it works really well. If you’re going from term to term, you know what to expect. It’s easy to use! It works great so far!”

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