Oklahoma senior nursing student with recent DUI, job advice

  1. 0
    I am a Senior level nursing student in Oklahoma in my last semester of nursing school. I was arrested and charged with a misdemeanor DUI at the end of July 12.

    I instantly knew I had made a grave decision and not a day goes by that I think about how I could have killed myself or worse an innocent person. This is the only time I have ever been in trouble with the law. I immediately got an attorney and completed an alcohol assessment, DUI school, and other requirements, before I was even officially charged, as I was trying to show that I understood the serious nature of my arrest. I am currently in the midst of completing a 6 month probation sentence that ends in April, after which the charges will be "dismissed" and my record "expunged" from the court records.

    I am seriously worried about being able to find a job after graduation. I know that a DUI never goes away and understand how bad it looks to a perspective employer.

    I have been in constant communication with the OK BON and know what I need to do for them as far as that goes. I have been told by the licensing manger that "I shouldn't have much of a problem getting approved to test" after fully explaining my situation to her, though I know that is just one person's word and I will not be sure until I have the acceptance to test letter in my hand.

    At the advice of an HR representative to a hospital I wanted to apply for, I went ahead and sent in my application for a position at that hospital and fully disclosed by situation as the HR rep advised. She assured me that my application would not be immediately tossed out because of it and that I would still be considered. That is exactly what happened though. 5 days after I sent in the application it was rejected, saying I had not been selected to interview for the position. several of my classmates have received calls to interview for the same position at that hospital. I don't what to do.

    All of the hospitals have recommended applying now for positions. Everywhere I have looked people say that being honest about it and fully disclosing is your best chance at getting a job.

    Now I feel that I should just wait until after my probation is finished and my record expunged, and I have passed the NCLEX to apply for a job and mark no convictions on the application and if my background comes up positive then just show proof it has been expunged. Any advice would be appreciated. Any one out there that has been in the same situation?

    Thanks, sincerely distressed nursing student.
    Last edit by JustBeachyNurse on Feb 16, '13 : Reason: formatting
  2. Get our hottest nursing topics delivered to your inbox.

  3. 4 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Keep in mind that many offenses like domestic violence and even disturbing the peace are more "bigger" flags than a DUI. DUI is a small flag but I feel based off my experience in being a nurse for 20 years, DUI tends be shrugged off as a mistake rather than a potential for violence like the offenses I mentioned earlier. I have trained boxers for over 30 years from all facets of life from doctors, UPS workers, ex-convicts, construction workers, and the simple full-time potential atheletes and many of these athletes have a small dent on the their records and they work decent jobs requiring licenses and degrees. Based off my experience, the only enemy you may have is your auto insurance rates and driving record. I feel the BON will throw this issue aside as being a first time offender and considering your young age with poor judgement. Crimes involving violence are the crimes that many people look at firsthand due to the potential harm to others.
  5. 0
    Quote from okstudentnurse13
    At the advice of an HR representative to a hospital I wanted to apply for, I went ahead and sent in my application for a position at that hospital and fully disclosed by situation as the HR rep advised. She assured me that my application would not be immediately tossed out because of it and that I would still be considered. That is exactly what happened though. 5 days after I sent in the application it was rejected, saying I had not been selected to interview for the position. several of my classmates have received calls to interview for the same position at that hospital. I don't what to do.
    Keep in mind that it is possible that your criminal record had nothing to do with your rejection. I won't lie: yes, it may have been a big factor, but there's also many other factors that could have influenced this rejection.

    My advice is that you should focus on getting through the BON and NCLEX first, since almost every state's BON will require you to disclose even expunged convictions. That is the most pressing challenge for you right now: completing school and getting licensed. Because without that license, you won't get a job regardless of whether your record was expunged.

    I would drop the OK BON a note (anonymously if you prefer) or go to their website to see what you will need to disclose to them when you apply for the NCLEX, so you can start preparing now.

    I sincerely wish you the best of luck.
  6. 0
    Thank you for the advice Meriwhen and torymax23. I have been in contact with my BON and am aware of the court documents I need to send in to them; which I am currently working on getting together. I know I really just need to focus on finishing school at the moment and passing boards; I had originally planned on waiting until at least april to start applying, but all of the hospital reps have been telling we students to apply now if we want to be considered for the positions we want. Which is the only reason I applied for the position in the first place, and now have been immediately denied. I know there could have been other reasons I was denied, but I feel like this is probably the reason.

    Thank you again.
  7. 0
    I know several Oklahoma RNs who got DUIs before becoming an RN. They are all gainfully employed at hospitals. I think you will be fine if you are honest and show you have learned from your mistake and will never drive drunk again.


Top