Alexia’s overview of her work experience at Matrix Chambers

During my time here at Matrix, I have learnt valuable skills and learned how to work on a variety of different projects involving law. When visiting the court hearings, it was interesting to learn and see how the opposing sides had different opinions on how the case should be resolved, it allowed me to broaden my perspective and look at things from each side. It was also fun speaking to Tamara Jaber and Ben Silverstone and what their role involves. I also learnt that working at Matrix can involve many different jobs and aspects of law. I enjoyed seeing what each team does and how it all can be put together and connect. It was interesting learning about what legal aid, conditional fee agreements and funding available for criminal cases are because I wasn’t aware of what they were until I was given the task to research them. On Tuesday I went to court with Tamara which unfortunately didn’t happen because the solicitor wasn’t able to make it. We did however go for tea afterwards to go over the case and what was supposed to happen in the court hearing. We made our way back to matrix and were given a research task. I found this interesting as I learnt new things and features of law which must be considered. On Wednesday I went to court in the morning with Ben Silverstone. The case involved legal aid and whether or not the man was eligible for it. We got back to Matrix and the marketing team find an event space for 200 guests to celebrate two barristers becoming silks. We were given a specification sheet and had to find a venue that provided all that was needed. We spoke at length to the marketing team and they showed us what they do, working with the website and social media, ensuring that everything is kept up to date for the public. They also helped with advertisement of their company and small projects such as invitations and leaflets. We then helped put the invitations for an event into envelopes and put them through the assigned pigeon holes. On Thursday we went to another court hearing with Nick Armstrong which was a court case concerning asylum. I found this court hearing the most interesting as there were many features of the case which were all divergent. It was good to hear the opposing solicitor and his arguments as to why he thought his decision was ideal. We then went back to Matrix and had to organise flights and book hotels for two barristers. We were given a sheet with dates and destinations of where they were expected to stay. We had to organise flights, travel to and from the airports and book their hotels. I found this the most stimulating as it allowed me to see how the admin team work. I was then given a website which had a task called ‘you be the judge’. We were given different scenarios and court cases and we as the judge had to decide what lawful punishment we would enforce based on the information provided. I enjoyed this because I may want to pursue a career being a barrister or solicitor and it was interesting to look at different cases and see how I would have to decide what lawful punishment would be fair and just. I enjoyed my week at Matrix because I was able to explore all the different roles and aspects of law. I learnt that the profession involves many other jobs than what I had initially thought of to be ‘law’. I enjoyed working with Frankie, Amy, Kat, the marketing team, the legal support team, the admin team and the fees team. Today we spoke to the fees team and the legal support team. The fees team introduced us to legal aid and CFA’s. We also learnt that they manage the finances for the barristers. We also learnt that the Legal Support Service help the barristers with any legal evidence that needs to be researched for them to use in court cases. We also experienced a mock interview. On Thursday night we were given sheets of information of what the role or job we were applying for was, it also had questions which we would have to answer the next day in the interview. We were also given a piece of paper with tasks needed to be done by the end of our shift. We had to put in order which tasks should be done first to last. This helped me prioritise what is most important and what needed to be done first. I really enjoyed the interview because I was given back feedback which will help me in the future because now I know what to do and what not to do. I think that the interview helped me gain confidence especially because I had to ‘sell myself’ which I have been given some guidance on. Overall I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Matrix because I have learned how to work individually but help others as well. I have learnt what each role involves and that has helped me make a decision as to what I want to work as in my future career in law. This short journey has helped me to see how working life is and how hardworking but rewarding it can be.