No matter how “mild” the penalties may appear at first, criminal charges should never be taken lightly. Even “minor” convictions can haunt you for your whole life. Why? Because if you’re convicted of a crime, you will have a criminal record, and the negative effects of a criminal record can impact nearly every area of your life.
Criminal convictions have specific negative effects when it comes to higher education. If you’re currently a student or hoping to pursue higher education, a crime on your record can have many life-altering repercussions you might not have considered.
Keep reading to understand a few ways a criminal conviction can impact your higher education, and what you can do about it:
- A criminal record can impact your ability to get into certain schools. According to Criminal Watchdog, one study shows that 66.4% of colleges collect criminal background information on at least some of their applicants. Depending on your criminal history, you may or may not have a strong chance of getting into college. Violent crimes and sexual offenses are the types of crimes that are likely to prevent a felon from being accepted by a college, says U.S. News.
- A criminal record can make it harder or impossible to enroll in certain courses, programs, and degrees. Depending on your conviction, you might not be able to enroll in programs that prepare you for jobs working with children, vulnerable adults, and other groups. Even if you can enroll, sometimes a criminal record will prevent you from later entering certain job fields.
- A criminal record can impact your chances of qualifying for financial aid, grants, and scholarships, and your ability to take out student loans. According to Federal Student Aid, you cannot qualify for a Federal Pell Grant if you are in a state or federal institution. Even after your release, Federal Student Aid says it can be difficult to qualify for benefits such as student loans and federal grants if your crime falls into certain categories, including sexual and drug-related crimes. Federal Student Aid also says that in most cases you will not be able to get federal student aid once on probation or parole if your offenses were sexual or drug-related. Private student loans can be hard to acquire if you’ve been convicted of a crime – including a less severe misdemeanor.
- A criminal record can make it difficult or impossible to qualify for student housing. A criminal record can complicate your ability to qualify for student housing and can lead to applications getting immediately rejected.
- A criminal conviction can hurt your ability to graduate. If you’re already in school when you’re convicted of a crime, you might not be able to finish your degree. What happens next depends on the crime you’re convicted of, and the college or university you are attending. Contact a criminal defense attorney for more information.
- A criminal record can impact the kind of job, salary, and work experience you will have after graduation. According to Online Paralegal, students with criminal histories may face difficulty completing internships, teaching hours or laboratory work. This particularly impacts medical and nursing graduate programs that require supervised clinical hours. Students with criminal convictions need to be wary of professional programs that accept students with criminal backgrounds even if those students won’t be able to join the profession. Some career paths will be closed to people convicted of felonies or misdemeanors. For example, attorneys are required to pass a character and fitness assessment before becoming licensed, as the National Jurist reminds prospective students. Some criminal offenses, such as violent crimes, may prevent a law school graduate from being allowed to practice law. Medical professionals with misdemeanors related to the mistreatment of vulnerable populations or misuse of drugs may have trouble obtaining the necessary licenses for their careers. Other fields like teaching, accounting and policing can also be difficult for people with criminal records to join.
What Can You Do to Save Your Future?
Are criminal charges threatening to impact your future and restrict your educational and professional opportunities? Act now to change the story! Work with an experienced criminal defense attorney in the Naples, Florida area to get your charges reduced or dropped. Taking initiative now is an investment that can totally transform your future for the better. The Law Offices of Michael M. Raheb can fight for you today and give you the best chance of avoiding the lifelong and far-reaching repercussions of a criminal record. Your educational opportunities and professional future don’t have to stop here.
Call 239-226-0888 or send a message online to set up your free consultation.
2423 First Street,
Fort Myers FL 33901
Fax Number: 866-949-0888