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Question re: background check/admittance to clinicals


I've been accepted into the RN program. Background check turned up a 39 (thirty-nine) year old misdemeanor. RN dept. now says I MAY not be accepted into clinicals, and would be dismissed from program.

Does anyone know the actual likelihood of this?

(I've held two professional licenses, with no blemishes on them).

Thank you in advance.

The issue is less with the school, and more with the Board of Nursing for your State. It sounds like your school program is proactive, and seeks to exclude those who are unlikely to be issued a license upon graduation from their program.

It has happened that students are granted admission to a school, graduate from the school, and THEN find out they are disqualified for licensure because of a past transgression. Sometimes it can be petitioned/appealed and a license issued....and sometimes not. "It depends" couldn't be more true.

Personally, I'd contact the BoN and speak with someone knowledgeable about these situations. You should be told what you would need to do to be assured that this won't be a barrier for licensing; present this information to your school's admissions director and go from there.

If you've held two professional licenses prior to now (and post-'episode') then it's reasonable to expect a waiver in this situation. It does, of course, matter WHAT the transgression was, if it is more likely to be denied because you're now looking at nursing, say, rather than real estate.

Good luck!

labordude, BSN, RN

Specializes in L&D, OBED, NICU, Lactation. Has 15 years experience.

You might even want to consult a lawyer. In many states, after a certain number of years has gone by for misdemeanors, they can be expunged/sealed/whatever. It's worth finding out how your state handles it.


Specializes in L&D, infusion, urology. Has 2 years experience.

Additionally, future employers will run background checks, and with the market the way it is, any reason to eliminate a candidate may be used. Just proceed with caution.

NurseGirl525, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU.

It's so you can gain access to the clinical sites. They are the ones that want the background check done. Usually it's felonies that will keep you out of the program. Depending on what the misdemeanor is for though I suppose.

windsurfer8, BSN, RN

Specializes in Prior military RN/current ICU RN.. Has 14 years experience.

I would say once your name is in the criminal justice system you have just made your life more difficult. I hope it works out and I really wish more people would read your post. It is an important lesson.

caroladybelle, BSN, RN

Specializes in Oncology/Haemetology/HIV.

It varies greatly from school to school and state to state.

There are some crimes that are more detrimental to seeking a nursing program/license than others.

In addition, clinicals must be held at a facility, and nursing students must be acceptable to those sites to participate in clinicals. Thus, if a potential nursing student has something unacceptable to the main clinical sites in their background, it does no good to accept the student when one knows that they will be able to participate.