Pennsylvania residents who have an interest in pursuing careers as court reporters usually need some help and guidance when getting started in the field.
Seeking out this help and guidance through reading articles such as this one, conducting further research, and talking to other professionals in the field will have to ensure that you have success and avoid common mistakes on your way to making your career goals a reality. Plus, this willingness to put effort and serious thought into whatever you do will serve you will throughout your career as a court reporter.
The very first thing you need to do once you have decided for sure that you wish to be a court reporter is to spend some time researching the field in general. In other words, you are going to double check to make sure court reporting really is the best fit for you! Far too many people venture into educations in court reporting only to find out, after they have wasted countless amounts of time, money, and effort, that it is not for them.
Don’t let this happen to you. Look into the nature of the work, and make sure this is really something you could see yourself doing and enjoying for many years to come. Remember, if it is not, this does not say anything negative about who you are as a person. This field is just not for everyone!
If, however, you still feel, after doing your research, that being a court reporter is right for you, then it is time to start exploring different career options in the field. Contrary to popular belief, not all court reporters have the same job descriptions or work in the exact same ways. In fact, there are a wide number of different capacities in which these professionals may work, and it is up to you to find your niche in the industry.
When you have found a job that sounds like it might be right for you, read up on the requirements and expectations for a professional in the field. Make sure you are realistic and thoughtful when assessing whether or not you could meet those requirements.
When you have found a job that you think you would enjoy and that you are willing to fulfill all of the educational, training, and other requirements for, then you will know you have met your match!
Planning out your education will be much easier and much more effective when you know exactly what it is that you wish to do in the field. This makes it so much easier to tailor your education to meet your career goals. It also makes it easier to narrow the massive amount of schools in the state down to just those that offer your program.
This brings us to our next step which is, of course, to choose an educational institution and a course of study that is right for you and your goals.
When choosing a school, the most important thing is that you pick one that is fully accredited. An unaccredited school cannot legally give out degrees to its students, and anything that you do earn form these institutions, such as a certificate, will be essentially useless to you.
To avoid wasting your time and your hard earned money, always research a school and its accreditation status thoroughly before you enroll. You have to be especially careful of this if you have chosen to do your schooling online. While there are a lot of good, legitimate online schools out there, there are also a lot of scams that you must be wary of and take steps to protect yourself from.
You might also think about choosing a school, either in the state or online, that has been certified and approved by the National Court Reporters Association. While this is not necessary, it does speak highly of the school, and potential employers will likely be very impressed at the fact that you attended such an institution. Again, it is okay if you cannot attend a certified school, but doing so can help you greatly in your future career and is an easy ticket to success.