How a DUI Conviction Affects College Enrollment and Retention

Posted by James Ferguson | Jul 15, 2019 | 0 Comments

DUI convictions can affect various aspects of a person's life. Depending on the level at which they are charged, the individual can be considered a felon and will lose certain rights. DUI convictions can impact one's employment status and the possibility of obtaining certain kinds of jobs in the future. A DUI conviction can also have an impact on a student's college enrollment and retention. This can be the case even if the individual was only charged, not even convicted. A DUI charge or conviction can also affect subsequent pursuits for professional certifications and licensure. As a result, a brush with the law on a DUI-related matter can have some irreparable effects on an individual who is pursuing an education. The following will outline how a DUI conviction can and cannot affect college enrollment as well as other aspects of a person's educational pursuits.

Enrollment and Retention
A one-time DUI misdemeanor conviction may not affect enrollment or retention. If the applicant was a minor when he or she received the conviction, there may be reason for the court to forgive the offense. The calculus becomes more complex when the applicant has multiple DUI offenses or a felony conviction. In this case, an educational institution has the choice of requesting the applicant show evidence of rehabilitation or deny enrollment altogether. To determine whether the applicant is prone to repeating the offense, the institution can seek additional information about the circumstances surrounding the offense or evidence as to what the applicant has done to rehabilitate him or herself.

Financial Aid
It is a misconception that one DUI conviction alone can disqualify an individual from receiving federal financial aid. However, this is not the case. Instead, the government is more interested in individuals who have felony convictions. Having a felony DUI conviction will more likely than not affect your eligibility for federal financial aid. At the least, the government would want to investigate and look further into the matter to make a final determination. Misdemeanor offenses are usually not as disqualifying as felony convictions. The kinds of charges that the financial aid agency does frown upon are drug offenses, including possession and distribution convictions. These convictions disqualify the applicant from receiving financial aid unless he or she has completed an acceptable drug rehabilitation program.

Disclosure Issues
Most college students or applicants get into trouble when it comes to disclosure. College students are required to disclose all criminal charges, arrests, and convictions to their schools. Some students who were never convicted of a crime will decide to omit a charge or arrest based on a misunderstanding or out of a desire to conceal their pasts. As a result, dishonesty can become the reason why a college denies enrollment rather than the charge or conviction of the offense itself. Honesty is always a good policy. If the applicant or student is not sure how to respond to an inquiry from a school, he or she should seek the guidance of an attorney.

Your DUI Attorney
Attorney James Robert Ferguson is an experienced DUI attorney. Driving Under the Influence is a serious crime, and if you have been charged with DUI, you need the help of a skilled attorney. Attorney Ferguson is well-versed is DUI defense strategies and understands the importance of putting the charge behind you so you can pursue your education and career. Call us now for a consultation.

See related blog posts:
Can I Expunge My Mississippi DUI Conviction?
Underage Alcohol-Related Offenses and Penalties

About the Author

James Ferguson

I was born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee. During college, I studied at East Tennessee State University, where I received a Bachelor's in Criminal Justice, which I then followed up with a Master's in Criminology from the University of Memphis. Before beginning my legal career, I worked as a Project Coordinator at the University of Memphis, where I assisted in training law enforcement officers in the Memphis Model of Crisis Intervention Training. The purpose of the project was to provide officers with the tools to deal with citizens in a state of mental crisis. I then went on to study law at the Mississippi College School of Law in Jackson. During law school, I clerked with Victor W. Carmody, Jr., the lawyer who wrote the book on DUI law in Mississippi. I am currently licensed to practice law in both Tennessee and Mississippi, and spend a majority of my time traveling the highways and biways of Mississippi defending those who have been charged with a DUI.


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