If you face criminal charges, a conviction could leave you with a permanent record that will impact your life in many ways.
You may not realize that a criminal conviction can specifically affect your higher education goals.
Misdemeanor and felony convictions stay on your record
Being convicted of a criminal offense has life-altering consequences. Common examples of criminal charges include:
- Fraud: identity theft, insurance fraud, mail fraud and inheritance scams
- Alcohol-related crimes: public intoxication, DUIs and providing liquor to minors
- Property crimes: theft, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and damaging another person’s property
- Internet crimes: computer viruses, malware and illegal gambling
- White-collar crimes: forgery, tax fraud, welfare fraud and embezzlement
- Drug crimes: possession or distribution of controlled substances or marijuana
A criminal record affects your higher education opportunities
Although there is currently no law in Florida requiring this inquiry, many colleges and universities have a policy requiring applicants to disclose their criminal records. A history of illicit activity may prevent your admission to the schools you want to attend. It can also minimize your chances of obtaining financial aid. You may no longer be eligible for student loans, federal grants or scholarships.
A conviction can affect your ability to enroll in the courses you want to take. It can also result in a rejection of your student housing application. Some training programs and education programs will not accept someone with a criminal record.
If you have a criminal history, you may face obstacles completing lab work, internships, student teaching hours or the clinical hours required by nursing and medical graduate programs.
The consequences of criminal convictions can be severe, even for first-time offenders. It is critical to understand your defense options and how to navigate the court system to reduce the impact on your education and professional future.