Can I obtain my social worker license with 3 DWIs?

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Comments (6)

johnnyboy in Ashburn, Virginia

76 months ago

I recently received a third conviction for Driving While Impaired. I was contemplating applying to an MSW program. Will it be a waste of time or will I be able to obtain a license in any state?

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socialwkr in Missouri

76 months ago

Johnnyboy, it will definitely depend on the state board who licenses social work and the social work school you are trying to get into. Some social work schools require background screenings as part of the admissions process. I think for the most part all social work schools tell their students that before their block internships, that we have to meet the agencies requirements for criminal background checks. It could get difficult for someone trying to find an internship placement with a conviction history, especially based on the clientele they may be looking to work with.

This is from the rules/regulations for Missouri, to give you an example.
(E) Proof of submission of fingerprints to
the Missouri State Highway Patrol’s approved
vendor for both a Missouri State Highway
Patrol and Federal Bureau of Investigation
fingerprint background check. Any fees due
for fingerprint background checks shall be paid by the applicant directly to the Missouri
Highway Patrol or its approved vendor. All
fees are nonrefundable.
(F) An applicant for licensure who answers
“yes” to any question in the application
which relates to possible grounds for denial
of licensure under section 337.630, RSMo,
shall submit a sworn affidavit setting forth in
detail the facts that explain the answer and
shall submit copies of appropriate documents
related to that answer, if requested by the
committee, which shall include but is not
limited to the following:
1. Certified copies of final orders/judgments;
2. If no final order—Certified copy of
clerk’s docket sheet and copy of complaint;
and
3. If criminal conviction—A certified
copy of final order and sentence or commutation
of sentence.
(6) Following the committee’s review process,
the applicant will be informed by letter
of licensure denial. The denial letter will
identify the reasons for denial and the appeal
process.

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Johnnyboy in Ashburn, Virginia

76 months ago

Socialwkr,

Thank you for your prompt response. Your information was very useful. I actually spoke with a social work licensing board member on the phone yesterday, and she pretty much echoed what you indicated.

I think my best option is to continue with alcohol treatment and work on my Master's in Psychology and then apply to experimental doctorate psychology programs. The time required to complete these degrees will allow for the charges to become older and maybe I can explain my stupidity to potential employers in higher education as youthful indiscretion.

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socialwkr in Missouri

76 months ago

Johnnyboy in Ashburn, Virginia said: Socialwkr,

Thank you for your prompt response. Your information was very useful. I actually spoke with a social work licensing board member on the phone yesterday, and she pretty much echoed what you indicated.

I think my best option is to continue with alcohol treatment and work on my Master's in Psychology and then apply to experimental doctorate psychology programs. The time required to complete these degrees will allow for the charges to become older and maybe I can explain my stupidity to potential employers in higher education as youthful indiscretion.

I applaud you for seeking alcohol treatment. Your openess and awareness of these issues will go along for you in whatever you decide to do. I had the pleasure of meeting a wonderful clinician who had overcome drug and alcohol problems in their past. They are a very effective practitioner because they have been on both sides of the coin, so to speak.

We all make mistakes, the key is that we work on not continuing with that same trend. The fact that you have chosen to go to alcohol treatment will help you in showing that you are seeking to better your issues.

Time will definitely be on your side as you said.

Best of luck! And stick with it!!!! Another tip is that the other person I was talking about also became a mentor after completing their alcohol program....they continued with AA and became a mentor. So it will definitely help if you continue with becoming involved in something like that too!

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johnhardin in Ashburn, Virginia

76 months ago

mangomango in Birmingham, Alabama said: Youthful indiscretion? You've had 3 DUIs! It's gone further than that. Do you not even care that 3 times (3 times you've been caught at least) you've been stupid and selfish to put other peoples' lives in danger? You should be in jail, not out driving a car.

My “youthful indiscretion” comment was not an attempt to belittle my actions. I agree that my actions were extremely selfish and irresponsible. Certainly, I care that my actions could have caused great harm to others, and I very thankful that I did not cause such harm. Obviously, I have an alcohol problem, and I voluntarily decided to seek intensive outpatient treatment to overcome this issue in addition to the alcohol education program mandated by my state of residence. Additionally, I spent 15 days in jail, lost my privilege to drive for four years, and was fined a substantial amount of money for my actions. You may feel that these sanctions are not sufficient, and maybe they are not in all cases. However, I have learned my lesson. Yes, it took me getting arrested three times, but it takes some people more time to learn from their mistakes than others.
Thank you for your comments.

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johnhardin in Ashburn, Virginia

76 months ago

socialwkr in Missouri said: I applaud you for seeking alcohol treatment. Your openess and awareness of these issues will go along for you in whatever you decide to do. I had the pleasure of meeting a wonderful clinician who had overcome drug and alcohol problems in their past. They are a very effective practitioner because they have been on both sides of the coin, so to speak.

We all make mistakes, the key is that we work on not continuing with that same trend. The fact that you have chosen to go to alcohol treatment will help you in showing that you are seeking to better your issues.

Time will definitely be on your side as you said.

Best of luck! And stick with it!!!! Another tip is that the other person I was talking about also became a mentor after completing their alcohol program....they continued with AA and became a mentor. So it will definitely help if you continue with becoming involved in something like that too!

I really appreciate your positivity. I recently joined an AA group, and I am looking forward to sharing my experiences and learning from others with my problem. Thank you very much for not being judgmental! You sound like an excellent social worker!!! :)

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