Work experience at Matrix is an insightful and enjoyable experience that I would highly recommend to anyone who has a keen interest in law. Over the course of the week I gained valuable insight into the world of barristers and all those who support them in their roles.
On my first morning, I was greeted by the lovely receptionists who immediately made me feel welcomed and at ease with their friendly personas. This was mirrored by everyone I met around the entire office as Lindsey from HR welcomed me and gave me a tour. Matrix Chambers does not have the aesthetics of a traditional barristers chambers as it has a modern, open & welcoming environment, thus countering the stereotype of a traditional chambers. I was introduced to the fees & finance team who explained to me how Barristers’ fees are calculated. Moreover, I met Team X, Team T and Team M who showed me how barristers schedules and cases are organised by the clerks. I was then introduced to Dan who works in Legal Support Services which is a team unique to Matrix. We visited both Gray’s Inn Library and the beautiful Lincoln’s Inn Library where we undertook research on behalf of a barrister who was working on a very exciting topical case. In the afternoon, I completed some research for the media & marketing team. From this very first day alone I had gained valuable insight into how a barrister’s chambers operates and all the amazing, committed teams who work incredibly hard behind the scenes to ensure its efficiency.
On Wednesday I had a further chance to develop my legal research skills by completing some practice legal research but this time utilising online legal tools and websites to look into some very interesting topical cases. Afterwards, I had the chance to practice my concise writing skills by writing a news piece about Dr Hadiza Bawa-Garba’s appeal to overturn her removal from practising medicine. For lunch, there was an Italian themed office lunch put on for all of the staff at the Chambers, which highlights the friendly, inclusive atmosphere of Matrix. I am told that this is a weekly occurrence and think that this is a great way for different teams and barristers alike to all socialise and meet, which is as important as ever in a post-pandemic world. In the afternoon, I did some work on the Matrix Causes Fund, one of Matrix’s charitable endeavours, and looked at the applications of an abundance of non-profit organisations and their worthy causes.
On Thursday I was fortunate enough to spend the day with Robbie Stern, a junior Barrister. I was lucky enough to read through some of his recent cases and was challenged to give my own judgment and opinion. We had lunch with some other junior barristers who are working on a plethora of fascinating cases which I found interesting to hear about. Prior to this, I had the incorrect perception that working as a barrister could potentially be a somewhat isolating experience but this gave me an insight into the friendly, social network that the members are able to create with other barristers within the chambers. In the afternoon, Robbie was kind enough to sit down and chat with me. By answering my questions he provided valuable insight into having a career as a barrister and the route to achieve this. This both clarified some questions that I had and genuinely inspired & encouraged me to pursue my goal of becoming a barrister. I am very grateful for the time that he took out of his day!
On my final day, I was able to do some more research into the changing guidance by the Equality And Human Rights Commission and had the chance to help write Matrix’s weekly newsletter which points members towards upcoming events and recent news articles on the Matrix website.
Overall, my week at Matrix exceeded my expectations and has given me confidence that pursuing a career in law is something that I aspire to achieve and believe I will enjoy, through the exposure I gained to the role of barrister and a multitude of different types of cases. I am very grateful for this opportunity as it was an amazing, valuable experience and would like to thank everyone who works at Matrix for going above & beyond to make me feel so welcome!