Post # 1
Hi bees, I am distraught right now. I’m an undergrad studying psych, and next year I will be applying to graduate programs studying educational psychology/school psychology. It was my goal to work in a school as a guidance counselor.
I am applying for a counselor position at a summer camp hosted by a local catholic school that a family member works at, so I am 99% sure I could get this job no matter what. I was filling out the application, and it asks if I have ever attended a pre-trial diversion program, and if I have had my record expunged or sealed, and if yes to explain. Bees, when I was 16 I made a stupid, stupid mistake and put a pair of earrings in my purse at a store, and was arrested for petit theft. I completed a diversion program, the charge for theft was never formally on my record (just the arrest) and I had my record expunged at 18. I thought that unless I want to work for the government or be a police officer, I would never have to disclose this information ever again. I looked it up, and Florida law (where I’m applying) says that educational institutions are allowed to ask these questions.
I am distraught. I’ve lived a 100% legal life since then; nothing, not even a parking ticket is on my record. I was an idiot teen, and I thought that this was behind me. Now I’m questioning if I should even go to grad school for my intended profession. Not all states allow educational institutions to ask about the pre-trial program or expungement, but I can’t find a list of states that do allow employers to ask.
I have a 3.4 GPA, I’m taking the GRE in 2 months, I really had everything planned out. Now I don’t know what to do. I never even thought this would ever come up again. I guess I’m not asking anything, but rather warning everyone about being an idiot and thinking your past is truly in the past.
Maybe teacher bees, if you could tell me which state you live in and if you had to disclose if you completed a pre-trial program/if you had your record expunged when you applied, that would be great. I just feel like the stupidest mistake, the dumbest three seconds of my life have now ruined the rest of my academic and professional dreams.
Post # 3
Honestly, I would say no under the assumption that its expunged from your record. If its question and researched and does come up, you can explain your answer.
Post # 4
Honestly, a stupid teen mistake will like be viewed as just that.
Post # 5
Not in that field, but I would think that making a stupid mistake and owning up to it would make you a better guidance counselor. You can actually sympathize with points of view.
Post # 6
I totally agree with MissIntent.. if it comes up explain it and use your mistake to your benefit. Explain how much it taught you and how you too made mistakes so you feel it makes you an even better counselor to kids! This story is a great story to explain to a troubled teenager and will help you to better understand the kids you work with. Don’t stress and good luck =)
Post # 7
@MissIntent: i completely agree! you can use that to your advantage!
Post # 8
That’s what my dad was saying too, that if I want to work in a school or high school, kids are going through this and I could be an advocate or help them out. Thanks for the chin up, you guys. Also he said that this is a good test; if the school comes back and says NO NO NO to my application, then I know to look elsewhere for a career, either in a different state or maybe a different profession. This is just a summer job. But if they don’t care, I can stay on track. This has been a great help.
Post # 9
I think your dad is right. Just because they ask, disclosing this info may not be held against you. Honestly, as you explain it was for pety theft and removed from your record, I think it’s much differnet than if you had a violent or sex crime on your record. Go ahead with the application and maybe put in an application at a place where you don’t have any connections as well to see what kind of response you get. I would take the GRE but also try to acess if this is detering potential employeers from looking at you before you make any major career decisions.
Post # 10
In our (UK) employment laws,you have to put down any records you have,but also its taken into consideration that the sentence you were given has been spent ie youve done the courses and it was a long long time ago. The seriousness of the cime is alos taken into consideration, but I also think that they will see this as a positive experience that youve learnt from and can help others not make those choices. I say go for it, I dont think they would hold it over you now! good luck!