In order to ensure that the Clinic can run at full capacity during the university holiday period, we hire a number of part time ‘Summer Students’ to staff the Clinic. These students are typically funded through one of our partnerships or by one of the law firms that support the Clinic. This year we have been able to hire ten summer students, thanks in part to the support of the Refugee Survival Trust, David Stirling and the Scottish Women’s Right Centre.
In the sixth of a series of articles written by our Summer Students, Jennifer Rowlinson describes a typical day.
My morning always starts with planning the day ahead and sifting through my emails to arrange the priority case work. At present, I have a number of employment cases which are always subject to strict time rules. One of my cases in particular has involved a lot of correspondence with the Tribunal so I have had numerous talks with the client and late working hours to ensure everything is sent away on time. On these days it is definitely all systems go.
As well as employment cases, I have a few matters which are going to small claims court. I am involved in drafting the appropriate court documents, creating the inventory of productions and drafting submissions and witness questions.
As a Firm Co-ordinator, my role over summer has consisted of speaking to current members to see who is staying with us and who is leaving. I have re-allocated cases where people have left and I have also been reviewing cases which are in my firm to keep the files up to date.
Finally, I have the additional role of helping to run the pilot for the new Foodbanks and Benefits project. On Wednesdays I head down to Lodging House Mission with the aim of obtaining new clients. The aim of the project is to help some of the most vulnerable groups in society so we can be dealing with benefits claims or helping clients to find a home. When I am not at LHM, I am working on the administrative side. My role is to draft posters, creating forms and recruitment for the project and liaise with project members.
This is my second year as a summer student and just like last year, it has been a great experience. No two days in the clinic are the same and I like that I am able to spend the summer helping people with their legal problems as well setting up another great Law Clinic project.