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Matt Garcia

Hilliard Law — Corpus Christi, Texas

John Matt Garcia
How did you get your job, and how long have you been there?
I started working at Hilliard Law prior to coming to St. Mary’s as an HR generalist. I was offered an internship over the winter break, and I returned in early June. I’ve been with the firm for over two years in total, but this summer is my first time working on the legal side of the firm.
What do you like most about your job?
I love getting to learn from a team of talented attorneys. Getting to sit in on depositions, mediations, and trial prep allows me to see how our attorneys strategize and relentlessly fight for our clients.
What is the most challenging part about your job? 
Our firm is fast-paced, which can be an obstacle when you are trying to learn new skills for the first time. However, everyone is very collaborative and is always willing to answer questions and offer guidance when needed.
How do you think this experience has helped you in your career path?
I think this experience has given me more insight into the day-to-day life of an attorney, which is something you don’t necessarily learn in the classroom. I have a better understanding of what clients expect, what supervisors expect, and what managing partners expect from their attorneys.
What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned at this job? 
Ask for help. There’s no shame in admitting when you don’t know something, and asking for help is sometimes the best way to learn. It’s better to ask and do something correctly than to guess and not meet expectations.
What is the one piece of advice you have for other students? 
Networking doesn’t end once you land an internship. Reach out to attorneys and talk to your team’s paralegals and legal assistants. Everyone knows something that you don’t, and the best way to learn is to listen. Networking can be as simple as grabbing lunch with someone you work with. These small gestures can open doors you won’t even know are there.