[font=Palatino Linotype]Good Evening all.
I'm looking for some serious input from the forum regarding a pretty serious issue I might be facing soon. I am currently scheduled to begin nursing school this fall. I have been a paramedic for the last 12 years. After spending all of that time trying to get patients to definitive health care within the "Golden hour", I decided that I would like to be a part of that definitive health care team. (Trauma nursing, here I come !!)
Here is my dilemma: When I went to the orientation last week, I was filled in on all of the requirements necessary for entrance. One of the main issues for me was the part about having been convicted of a crime. Either a felony, or a misdemeanor. Well, guess what? I have one of each. Allow me to explain a bit before I get flamed. The misdemeanor was for impersonating a police officer. It was because I got pulled over on the interstate when I was moving from Omaha to Virginia Beach. Since I was a volunteer firefighter in Omaha, I was allowed to have a red light on my dashboard. I was not aware that it was not legal in Virginia. Luckily, once I was able to prove to the court that I was, in fact, a firefighter in Omaha, the charge was overturned. It still shows on my record though.
The felony was for embezzlement of information. In that case, I was working for a pharmaceutical monitoring firm that regulated the testing and trial phases of new medicines and medical adjutants from inception to approval by the FDA. I found a co-worker that had a perfect record of compliance from his clients. That is a very rare thing in the pharmaceutical world. I did some digging and found that he was cutting corners, falsifying information, and breaking rules to get his clients through the testing process faster. I don't know if he was getting anything for it, but I chose to turn him in. I copied the information to a floppy diskette,submitted my resignation, and turned the information over to the police. The individual was fired and charged, the company was sanctioned, and the accounts were pulled and turned over to another watchdog group. About a month later, I was arrested at my home and charged with embezzlement of proprietary information for turning company information over to a third party without authorization.
I have no intention of trying to hide this on my nursing school application. I am not willing to part with my integrity and honesty by trying to do so. I know that I will have to get am exemption from disqualification from each hospital that I do clinicals at, and I know that if they choose not to give me one, I will be forced to drop out of the program. I am willing to risk that in order to chase my dream.
What I would like to know is whether this is something that will likely kill my chances of being a nurse. These things happened a number of years ago, and I have never had any other issues at all. I am not looking to be berated or flamed by anyone. I just want some good, honest answers and advice. Please?:imbar
Feb 23, '04
[font=system]the best advise, i can give, is to talk to an attorney who can advise you of your legal rights and limitations before entering nursing school. best wishes.
Feb 23, '04
The best advice I can give, is to talk to an attorney who can advise you of your legal rights and limitations BEFORE entering nursing school.
Feb 24, '04
Talk to an attorney, I'm assuming you have if youre so determined to get into nursing, but in case you haven't, really look into it. When my once delinquent brother decided to turn his life around and go into the Marines (which, thank god, turned out wonderfully), he had to get a few charges expunged from his record. I believe they were only misdemeanors though. I don't know how much you can do for felonies. But I will tell you that it was EXPENSIVE and we, as a family, begged and borrowed to afford to have his charges taken off his record.
Also, I know it's not funny, but I totally feel you here because you seem to have the HORRIBLE luck I do!
Feb 24, '04
Talking to an attorney is a good place to start.
You may be able to have your record expunged, ie, taken off your record and have the record sealed, for the misdeamor. In Illinois you can do this yourself -- you do not need an attorney to do this for you. You go to the county courthouse, get the proper paperwork, pay about $100.00 and the clerk files it. If it has been a considerable length of time, your records gets cleaned. It takes some time for the whole legal process to happen, about six months.
Even those charges, if it's been a while, may not necessarily keep you from school or from practicing. You are a paramedic now, right? You good record in the present will balance out whatever bad luck has come your way in the past. In Illinois you get a chance to tell your side of the story, too. Your nursing board or the chairperson at your school will be able to advise you better.
You can find low-cost attorneys at a local law school, or law students willing to advise you.
I had to do this because my husband and I are adopting from a foreign country. They like to see clean records. I had an old, old charge of "phone harassment" against a former room-mate who had taken some of my property. She then had me charged with phone harassment, but I had it coming since I tore her a new one, telephonically, of course, while she was at work. :chuckle
I'd start on the process now, though. Good luck!
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