Faculty Spotlight: James R. Pennington, Esq.

Image James R. Pennington, Esq.

EKU Online is pleased to welcome James R. Pennington to the EKU Department of Government. He earned his bachelor’s degree in political science from EKU in 2009 and received his juris doctorate from the University of Kentucky in 2014. Pennington is a partner with Bluegrass Law Group, PLLC, in Lexington, Kentucky. 

What led you to EKU?

In law school, I developed a strong interest in academia. Since 2015, I have been an assistant coach for EKU’s nationally-ranked mock trial program. In 2017, I joined EKU as an adjunct professor teaching online courses. My new role as an assistant professor of paralegal science will give me the opportunity to teach online and on-campus courses.

What’s the most interesting or fulfilling thing about the work you do?

I enjoy inspiring my students to reach their goals. Whether the goal is becoming a paralegal or an attorney, it is very fulfilling teaching and serving as a mentor for my students.    

How do you help online students feel engaged?

I utilize discussion board assignments within Blackboard, as well as, wiki assignments and blogs to increase student engagement. I always try to make topics interesting and look for ways that students can relate to material. Finally, I hold virtual office hours using Blackboard so that students can always ask questions. 

What’s one thing you wish potential students knew about your degree program or about your department?

Our paralegal program is accredited by the American Bar Association. All classes are taught by experienced attorneys, and graduates of our program are educated in nearly all legal practice areas. The ABA requires a number of hours be taught through face-to-face instruction. This is achieved through two weeks of on-campus instruction, which students may complete consecutively or over two summer terms. It’s a great opportunity to get to know our students and prepare them for their job search.

Published on October 19, 2018