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Applying to clinical psych internships this year, current pending DUI charge (from 2021) versus convicted DUI?

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PHDtobe_

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I (25 y/o female) made a dumb mistake and drove home after going out last year (feb2021). I had a few drinks, on an empty stomach after working all day, and ignorantly thought that if i stopped drinking by 10:30ish I would be good to drive by 2. I really had no knowledge of BAC and how long it takes for alcohol to be fully processed. I got pulled over after almost missing my exit and I blew .1 (legal limit .08). My attorney tried to file a motion to dismiss based on no sufficient probable cause to arrest, as I was able to pass all the roadside tests as evidenced in the dashcam video (walked in a straight line, balanced on 1 foot, etc). As expected, the judge denied that so the only possible outcomes now will be a DUI or DWVI (visibly impaired, one charge lower but still a misdemeanor & essentially understood to be the same thing) OR we can appeal that decision and extend the timeline (1-3 years depending on how far we keep appealing). My lawyer told me about a case of an international medical resident who got a DUI and they appealed it mainly to buy her time so that she could finish her residency, knowing they would still likely lose and she would be deported. During the appeal process the charges are considered pending and there is no conviction, but background checks most likely will show the arrest & charge pending. I am currently licensed in my state practice psychology (LLP), and I will be applying for clinical internships in the fall to start in 2023. I'm trying to decide if it is worth appealing it, mainly so that the charges will stay as "pending" until I can finish my internship and graduate. I would have to report the conviction to my licensing board and face possible required recovery program that sounds like anywhere from 1-3 years of essentially their own probation, so therapy, random testing, reporting to my supervisors as they have to send reports every few months, etc (HPRP in michigan)), would have to bring my DCT, advisor, likely the entire department in on it (i havent told them yet....which is a whole other source of shame, guilt, and stress).

Specific questions/points of discussion I have as I try to decide are:
1- Will internship sites look at a pending charge any differently than a conviction? If background checks for internships will still show the arrest and charges, I'm thinking I would probably have to address it in my apps/interview/rec letters anyway if it will show up on my background check, even if I technically dont have to disclose any conviction yet
2-I'm leaning more towards biting the bullet and taking the conviction now, so I can do my probation and get this behind me... theres a good chance I'll get off legal probation in 6 months and will be done by the time I interview for internship. However, I'm not sure if my grad program will put me on any probation (anyone have experience with that?), as well as the licensing board which is my main concern bc it can run anywhere from 1-3 years.... One option if I choose this route is to delay my internship and wait to apply next year, as this will put more time between the incident and applications and I might be able to complete all my probations by then (any thoughts on that?)

Some background info on me for context: i work with kids/families, I have done multiple trainings in specialized therapy modalities, designed/ran various group interventions, I worked in private practice and a very diverse hospital setting for practicums doing assessments and therapy, I have extensive comprehensive neuropsych assessment experience, I have maintained a 4.0 and progressed through the program as expected despite everything, gotten consistently good feedback from supervisors, while interviewing for practicums, I got the first choice offer from almost every site I interviewed at. I am extremely passionate about the work I do and it is reflected when I speak about my experiences, interests, and goals. Our program is quite extensive and people say we end up having a lot more hours than other applicants which is another strength.

I would really appreciate any thoughts, advice, experiences, anything anyone can share that might help me make my decision, as well as anything that might help me throughout the process. Thank you for reading.
 
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I (25 y/o female) made a dumb mistake and drove home after going out last year (feb2021). I had a few drinks, on an empty stomach after working all day, and ignorantly thought that if i stopped drinking by 10:30ish I would be good to drive by 2. I really had no knowledge of BAC and how long it takes for alcohol to be fully processed. I got pulled over after almost missing my exit and I blew .1 (legal limit .08). My attorney tried to file a motion to dismiss based on no sufficient probable cause to arrest, as I was able to pass all the roadside tests as evidenced in the dashcam video (walked in a straight line, balanced on 1 foot, etc). As expected, the judge denied that so the only possible outcomes now will be a DUI or DWVI (visibly impaired, one charge lower but still a misdemeanor & essentially understood to be the same thing) OR we can appeal that decision and extend the timeline (1-3 years depending on how far we keep appealing). My lawyer told me about a case of an international medical resident who got a DUI and they appealed it mainly to buy her time so that she could finish her residency, knowing they would still likely lose and she would be deported. During the appeal process the charges are considered pending and there is no conviction, but background checks most likely will show the arrest & charge pending. I am currently licensed in my state practice psychology (LLP), and I will be applying for clinical internships in the fall to start in 2023. I'm trying to decide if it is worth appealing it, mainly so that the charges will stay as "pending" until I can finish my internship and graduate. I would have to report the conviction to my licensing board and face possible required recovery program that sounds like anywhere from 1-3 years of essentially their own probation, so therapy, random testing, reporting to my supervisors as they have to send reports every few months, etc (HPRP in michigan)), would have to bring my DCT, advisor, likely the entire department in on it (i havent told them yet....which is a whole other source of shame, guilt, and stress).

Specific questions/points of discussion I have as I try to decide are:
1- Will internship sites look at a pending charge any differently than a conviction? If background checks for internships will still show the arrest and charges, I'm thinking I would probably have to address it in my apps/interview/rec letters anyway if it will show up on my background check, even if I technically dont have to disclose any conviction yet
2-I'm leaning more towards biting the bullet and taking the conviction now, so I can do my probation and get this behind me... theres a good chance I'll get off legal probation in 6 months and will be done by the time I interview for internship. However, I'm not sure if my grad program will put me on any probation (anyone have experience with that?), as well as the licensing board which is my main concern bc it can run anywhere from 1-3 years.... One option if I choose this route is to delay my internship and wait to apply next year, as this will put more time between the incident and applications and I might be able to complete all my probations by then (any thoughts on that?)

Some background info on me for context: i work with kids/families, I have done multiple trainings in specialized therapy modalities, designed/ran various group interventions, I worked in private practice and a very diverse hospital setting for practicums doing assessments and therapy, I have extensive comprehensive neuropsych assessment experience, I have maintained a 4.0 and progressed through the program as expected despite everything, gotten consistently good feedback from supervisors, while interviewing for practicums, I got the first choice offer from almost every site I interviewed at. I am extremely passionate about the work I do and it is reflected when I speak about my experiences, interests, and goals. Our program is quite extensive and people say we end up having a lot more hours than other applicants which is another strength.

I would really appreciate any thoughts, advice, experiences, anything anyone can share that might help me make my decision, as well as anything that might help me throughout the process. Thank you for reading.
Certainly you should confer with an attorney knowledgeable in the rules of your state/jurisdiction (or other you might be applying too), but- at least in my state- to work with children you would need to undergo a criminal records (CORI) check. This would reveal the charge and the disposition (e.g., "appealed"; "participated in program"; "fined"). As internships are geographically all over the place, that's a lot of state laws to be on top of. Whether or not a DUI would prohibit them from hiring you depends on the specific position. This check does not usually come until after an offer is accepted, with onboarding contingent upon the successful pass of the CORI check. However, most (all) places that require a CORI will make that known before an offer is made, and may ask if it is going to be an issue (in the cases of internships, it may even be stated in program information and application materials). Basically- this may be a difficult thing to "hide" from future employers, especially if you are in a child related field. In some cases, it may be seen as a better thing to be able to say "I made a mistake, accepted the consequences, and learned from it" as soon as possible. Again- consult with an attorney- but trying to hide this by appealling may not actually work.
 
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