I recently had a university student (my ex) expelled from my undergrad university when he was found responsible for physical abuse and sexual misconduct. How would this expulsion affect his future educational career?

How would the expulsion affect him if he tried to apply to law school?

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    I'm sorry to hear about the abuse and misconduct. I'm ashamed that it still happens nowadays. – Andrew Grimm Sep 24 '14 at 23:32
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    Do remember that any consequences his suffers are his fault for doing what he did, not your fault for reporting it. – David Richerby Sep 25 '14 at 0:21
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    I feel like this question treads too dangerously along several issues. If this were a question worded as "What if a theoretical student..." then it wouldn't be as bad, but I feel there is a major conflict of interest and very serious situation being presented here that needs to be dealt with through advisors. – Compass Sep 25 '14 at 1:35
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    @Compass, how do you know? – anon Sep 25 '14 at 18:15
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    There are judges to decide what is the appropriate consequence for this person's behavior, please do yourself and society a favor and have this person face judiciary authorities. On the strict subject of academia, there are people who finished their education after facing criminal charges and even prison. – Cape Code Sep 25 '14 at 18:40

This answer assumes the person in question has been convicted of those crimes. If he has not, things will be easier (but not a cakewalk).

The conviction and expulsion will affect him quite significantly, given that some universities require applicants to declare both certain criminal convictions (usually sex, violence, or drug convictions) and any previous expulsions. Trying to hide convictions is a very bad idea.

Sure, you can find a university who does not require a declaration (or will admit the applicant anyway, if the university is sufficiently satisfied that the student has reformed) - the likelihood of such probably varies by country. I suspect life as a graduate student would be very difficult (getting teaching positions may be hard).

This question reminds me of an article I read a while ago. This man was a convicted murderer, and has turned his life around and obtained a PhD in psychology.

Any specific advice would be subject to the laws of his country, the policies of the universities, and more specific details of the conviction (read: off-topic for StackExchange).

There will always be roadblocks, especially with sex and abuse convictions. Repentance and perseverance may clear enough to find a path through, but it wouldn't be easy.

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    Regarding your second paragraph, there are countries where asking about criminal record of prospective employees is uncommon or even illegal (except for things like law enforcement, etc.). – Cape Code Sep 24 '14 at 21:13
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    I have applied to my share of universities (decades ago) and helped young people with a total of 9 applications to Canadian institutions. Not one asked about criminal convictions or expulsions. – Kate Gregory Sep 24 '14 at 21:28
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    @Jigg I'm surprised. Any examples of country? Would this mean a convicted sex offender can easily became a teacher, or a thief can easily get a retail job? – Moriarty Sep 25 '14 at 6:04
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    @Moriarty the job applications might ask (not for retail but for teacher - certainly school volunteering requires a background check) but it doesn't follow that the university does. – Kate Gregory Sep 25 '14 at 10:53
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    @Moriarty I might have been a step too far with 'illegal' although it is certainly considered protected personal data, in my experience in Switzerland, you can go to any university and study, research and teach without being asked a record. I was asked one when I did substitute teaching for middle school, that fell in the 'etc.'. I briefly worked in retail as a student and wasn't asked to show a record. – Cape Code Sep 25 '14 at 12:03

If convicted of these crimes, the student's entire career will be in jeopardy. Additionally, it will be next to impossible to achieve any sort of security clearance (especially in the US), and many jobs will not hire them due to their criminal past that comes up in a background check. It may also exclude the student from being accepted into many other undergraduate and graduate schools.

According to this source,

At LCCC, the school also looks into incidents that involve students, vice president of student services Judy Hay said.

“If the incident would affect the college environment, like a sex offense, we would absolutely look into that,” she said. “If it’s an alcohol offense and they’re underage, we’d look at that as well.”

The dean of students generally decides if an incident needs to be evaluated, she said. But the college looks for violations of student policy or code of conduct, not at the crime.
Penalties students could face can range from making an apology to being expelled [again], Hay said.

Curtis, Aerin. 'Students Facing Legal Trouble May See Penalties From College | Wyomingnews.Com'. Wyomingnews.Com. Last modified 2014. Accessed September 24, 2014. http://www.wyomingnews.com/articles/2014/02/12/news/20local_02-12-14.txt#.VCNFKxLTQl9.


Extremely, overwhelmingly negatively if it is found out. Nobody wants such a person as part of their program and rightfully so. Most universities do not do background checks or anything, but it is going to be difficult for the person to get letters of recommendation from professors who know why he was expelled.

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    Most universities in the U.S. do require complete transcripts, which in this case will clearly indicate the person was expelled. – Oswald Veblen Sep 24 '14 at 20:52
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    An excellent point. – shane Sep 24 '14 at 21:13
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    "He wouldn't be the type to make an apology." I don't think that sounds beneficial at all. Someone who unapologetically commits real crimes is going to have a hard time getting through life, and rightfully so. – Magus Sep 24 '14 at 22:55
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    What is Saul? Also, would the expulsion prevent him from taking the bar exam? – Ali Sep 25 '14 at 0:08
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    @Ali: "better call Saul" is a reference to the TV show "Breaking Bad". – Benoît Kloeckner Sep 25 '14 at 8:21

A criminal conviction could affect eligibility for financial aid. For example, in the US,

What other convictions might affect my aid?

If you have been convicted of a forcible or nonforcible sexual offense, and you are subject to an involuntary civil commitment upon completion of a period of incarceration for that offense, you cannot receive a Federal Pell Grant.


How would the expulsion affect him if he tried to apply to law school?

  1. You are thinking about the wrong thing. Think about: How would his non-expulsion have affected your grades and ability to continue your career and life as a free and happy person when one of the times which really decide who you will be would have been deeply spoiled by somebody abusing you?

  2. The academic programs which i know would not consider something like this if he was not convicted of a crime, so if he learned his lessen and behaves well, it should not be terrible for him.

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