Instructors use practical experience from their law practices to enlighten paralegals
Branford graduates will attest to the fact that a dedicated instructor can have a significant impact on their willingness to learn. That being the case, it’s good to know that Robert Smith and Grace Luppino – a pair of instructors at Branford’s flagship campus in Branford, CT – are dedicated to inspiring paralegal students even beyond Branford’s walls.
Luppino has been a paralegal instructor for 20 years; Robert Smith for a little over five. Luppino has been practicing law since 1990 and Smith since 2005. The two instructors have enough experience between them that they recently wrote and compiled a legal textbook set for publication this August.
Bankruptcy Law and Practice provides guidance for students in paralegal training programs who are learning to navigate the complex world of bankruptcy law. As Smith recently explained, he and Luppino came up with the idea for the book after growing frustrated with the subpar level of content students had access to about the topic.
The instructors went to a publisher with their concept for a broader, more comprehensive text. That publisher gave them the green light, and the project continued to move ahead.
Practicing what they preach
In addition to compiling the text and working as instructors, Luppino and Smith are also practicing attorneys. The paralegal program they help oversee at Branford focuses on several crucial aspects of paralegal work, including research and investigation, helping lawyers prepare documents, preparing correspondence, assisting with trial law, understanding how to read legal text, drafting contracts, coordinating schedules, and maintaining thorough records.
While paralegal skills pertaining to bankruptcy are a bit more specialized, that sort of training can also play a role at any legal practice or corporation that deals with either business- or finance law.
Bringing it all back home
Real-world experience is a valuable asset as it pertains to what Luppino and Smith hope to pass along to their students.
“We enjoy helping to bridge the gap between the theoretical and practical,” says Smith. “We want to send our students out into the workforce with the skill set they need to be successful in a busy law practice.”
Given their 25 years of experience teaching and practicing law, it’s safe to assume their Branford students are in very capable hands.