Interview with our Work Experience student, Amber

Amber joined us for Work Experience a couple of weeks ago. We asked her a couple of questions about herself and her week at Matrix. A lawyer in the making; great to hear!

Tell us about yourself
My name is Amber Thomas. I am seventeen years old and I currently board at Cheltenham Ladies’ College. Until two years ago, I was living in Marbella in Spain, but I am now back living in London with my mum and four brothers/sisters. I have just finished my first year of sixth form and take English Literature, History, Geography, Classical Civilisation and Spanish.

Why are you interested in Law?
I started to take an interest in Law when I was 14. I was in hospital waiting to have an operation and watching TV when a repeat of Silk came on. I was hooked. That was the moment I knew that I wanted to become a barrister. Since then, I have broadened by knowledge of Law further than what I’ve seen on TV (!) by doing work experience, volunteering at my local legal services, and going to see barristers in action at court. All of this experience has cemented what I already knew and now I don’t think I can see myself doing anything else!

What aspects of Law interest you the most?
I love a good argument. The idea of structuring an argument in a constructive and persuasive manner that exposes the flaws of another’s greatly appeals to me. Since I have been debating for 3-4 years I feel that becoming a barrister is the next, albeit quite large, step up.

I have always taken quite a keen interest in commercial law and also fraud. Last year, I shadowed a barrister who was working on a case of fraud where his client was accused of concealing £22 million worth of her own jewellery, having claimed that it was all stolen and received the money from her insurance company. Needless to say, this was one of the most interesting court cases I have seen!

What has been the best part of your week at Matrix?
I think the opportunity to watch an actual murder trial in progress has been one of the best parts of my week at Matrix. On Tuesday and Wednesday morning, I went to the Old Bailey to watch the Matthew Powe case. The defendant was accused of murdering Vitalis Katakinas outside a pub in June last year. This was the first murder case I had ever sat in on and was really interested to see the order of proceedings and the ways in which the barristers dealt with cross-examination etc. As murder is an area that I haven’t particularly explored until now, it was good for me to see this different side to the legal system. Also – having read about this case in the news, it was invaluable for me to see the case in action as, with a basic idea of what had gone on, it was even more interesting to follow.

What are you planning on doing next?
I apply for university next year and I am planning on doing a Law degree. I think that for someone who is as certain as I am that I will, hopefully, become a lawyer, there isn’t really the need to waste time doing a subject that I’m not as passionate about. I’m planning on applying to: UCL, LSE, Bristol, Exeter and Cambridge.

I want to say a huge thank you to all the people at Matrix who were friendly, accommodating and made my week with them fantastic.