Very Bad Background

  1. Hey guys,

    I am a prenursing student in California and I'm about to apply to a reputable local nursing program and I'm very excited. I've had really good grades and things have been going so smooth. I am also in recovery from alcohol and drug addiction. As of today, I have 4 and 16 days clean and sober.

    Consequently, I have had serveral drug convictions (3), 2 DUI's, a battery charge, and a couple of petty theft convictions during my 22 years of abusing drugs. However, I have lots of evidence towards my rehabilitation.

    I have a certificate of complition from a rehab,
    competed probation, had letters from members of my recovery community ( I have letters from retired judges and therapists), I work in the recovery field currently, where I dispense schedule class 2 drugs without issue, and letters from employers, drug counselors and academic counselors, as well. I can provide edivence of meetings I attend and letters from sponsors. I am currently on track to have my record expunged in a years and a half after paying off my fines. I will be, God willing, 7 years recovered by the time I go before the nursing board. I have put in so much work to be here.

    My nursing school says for me to just keep going, but I am fearful that the nursing board my see my record history and dismiss me altogether. I understand their job is to protect the public. But am NOT the person I used to be. I also hear California nurses is among the toughest scrutinized in terms of their history. Does anyone have any experience they can share with me? I am I wasting my time and money investing into something that is futile ? Please help. Thanks!
  2. Visit Everhopeful profile page

    About Everhopeful

    Joined: Jul '18; Posts: 3; Likes: 1
    from CA , US

    13 Comments

  3. by   Been there,done that
    Only the California BON can answer your question, and you would be asking for that answer in advance... so it could change.
    You are not accepted to nursing school, yet. Anybody can take the pre-reqs. Of course your school says to keep going. They want your money.

    Call me Debbie Downer if you want. I myself would not go for it. There are many other programs that you could go for.. without the stringent requirements of nursing.

    I do wish you the best.
  4. by   Kallie3006
    First off, congratulations on your continued sobriety! Unfortunately as Been there has stated, the only one that can answer your questions will be the BON. If you were able to sit for boards I would bet that you will have restrictions on your license and possible have to go through a treatment program with them as well. Then there's the question if you would be able to get hired after the background check. I may be completely wrong on that, however I do think it is a strong possiblity one or more of these factors would hinder your chance to even launch your career as a nurse.

    Have you looked into being a substance abuse counselor? Your past experiences and perseverance would make you relatable and may possibly provide the "light at the end of the tunnel" to others facing similar hardships. Just a thought.

    Whatever happens I wish you the best.
  5. by   Everhopeful
    Hey guys I really appreciate your responses. But I'm really looking for someone who has had experience in this. I've talked to the board. The board says talk to the school. The school has told me to keep going. I would really like to hear from people with something similar. I've also heard you can get licensed out of state and come back to California. Does anyone have experience dealing with the board on these issues?
  6. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from Everhopeful
    Hey guys,

    I am a prenursing student in California and I'm about to apply to a reputable local nursing program and I'm very excited. I've had really good grades and things have been going so smooth. I am also in recovery from alcohol and drug addiction. As of today, I have 4 and 16 days clean and sober.

    Consequently, I have had serveral drug convictions (3), 2 DUI's, a battery charge, and a couple of petty theft convictions during my 22 years of abusing drugs. However, I have lots of evidence towards my rehabilitation.

    I have a certificate of complition from a rehab,
    competed probation, had letters from members of my recovery community ( I have letters from retired judges and therapists), I work in the recovery field currently, where I dispense schedule class 2 drugs without issue, and letters from employers, drug counselors and academic counselors, as well. I can provide edivence of meetings I attend and letters from sponsors. I am currently on track to have my record expunged in a years and a half after paying off my fines. I will be, God willing, 7 years recovered by the time I go before the nursing board. I have put in so much work to be here.

    My nursing school says for me to just keep going, but I am fearful that the nursing board my see my record history and dismiss me altogether. I understand their job is to protect the public. But am NOT the person I used to be. I also hear California nurses is among the toughest scrutinized in terms of their history. Does anyone have any experience they can share with me? I am I wasting my time and money investing into something that is futile ? Please help. Thanks!
    I wouldn't do it. Your history is too extensive. On top of that, nursing is probably not a healthy line of work for you considering your tendencies.
    It's one thing to salvage a career in progress, but quite another to jump in knowing these issues already exist. I can't speak for the BON, of course ....only for myself. This is not a gamble I would take.
  7. by   remotefuse
    It is going to be practically impossible for you to get a license with your charges. Violent crimes and crimes against moral turpitude (theft) make it almost impossible to get a license. Depending on what state you are in, you may be able to look up penal codes for a more accurate idea.
  8. by   newnurse Fresno
    I sent you a pm. I had a bad record here in Cali as well and got my unrestricted license. Nothing is impossible.
  9. by   Everhopeful
    Hey, thank you! I'm still new to this site so I can get your pm. I really appreciate your support. I know my record is bad but I feel like I've done so much to get my life and future together. I work with schedule 2-5 drugs at my job anyway and I've been dispensing them for 2 going on 3 years. I just really was looking for moral support. You did that! Thanks
  10. by   newnurse Fresno
    Start gathering as much evidence to support your rehabilitation as you can. Letters, meeting signatures, if you ever drug tested for probation try to get a copy of your clean tests. Also look into getting any charges expunged. It's expensive. But it's worth it, it looks better.
  11. by   newnurse Fresno
    Sorry just reread where you hate working on expungement. That's awesome.
  12. by   Horseshoe
    Quote from newnurse Fresno
    I sent you a pm. I had a bad record here in Cali as well and got my unrestricted license. Nothing is impossible.
    Actually, *some things* are impossible.

    Hope the OP gets the answers he is looking for and will come back to share the results.
  13. by   newnurse Fresno
    Here in Cali, there is not one charge that will automatically disqualify you. It's all done on a case by case basis. And even if they deny you, you can get a attorney. Also our governor passed a law about expunged records. So even with that record, it's not impossible. I won't go into my record here, but it was pretty bad.
  14. by   Lvn1973
    You can get your RN license in california. The BRN has a through understanding and respect for recovery which is why they continue to support the diversion program. I had 2 dui's and a reckless driving with injuries. I lost my LVN license during all this and then got my RN license after becoming sober and in recovery. It was a probationary license but it can be done if you are truly in recovery and have a paper trail such as AA/NA meeting slips signed (I would start it now while in school) etc. Not easy but if it is your dream it will be worth it. I have several other posts about this if you look at my past posts. Don't be discouraged by people who havent been through it.

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