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  1. #1
    Senior Member The Great One's Avatar
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    Default Can my father get into grad school with a felony?

    Hey folks,

    I just had a quick question: If my father has a felony can he get into the master's program at a University? Back in 2004, my father got power of attorney for my Grandmother. He took care of my Grandmother, bathed her, took her to her doctor's appointments and everything. He also has this sister of his that is basically the worst form of human life. She never saw my grandmother, never took care of her, and never even called her, or even gave her a birthday card. In 2004, my father got the idea that it was legal to spend my Grandmother's money as he saw fit so that he would get it all and my Aunt wouldn't get any. After all, he figured that he was taking care of my Grandma, and my aunt never saw her, so why should she get any of the money? He even checked with a lawyer and the lawyer said that he could do anything that he wanted with the money, and he couldn't be penalized by court of law for it.

    In 2007, she took my father to court and pressed charges against my father. Most of the lawyers and even the judge that this should be a civil case and not a criminal one, but my aunt was so bloodthirsty that she went for the jugular and said, "She wanted to see my father in jail". Anyway, so he got charged with two crimes, "Neglect of the Elderly not resulting in great bodily harm" and "Exploitation of the Elderly". He was convicted of two felonies and was sent to prison in 2008.

    However, he was very well behaved in prison and got out early for good behavior. Finally, in March of 2011, he got out of prison. Every since then, my father has had almost an impossible time finding a job. He was an English teacher in the public school system for 20 years, and they told him that he can't go back with his felony. My father is literally reduced to taking fast food jobs now even though he has numerous years of experience and a bachelor's degree in communications.

    My question is, with my father's felonies will he be a able to get into college for a master's program? Keep in mind that he already has a bachelor's degree from the University that he is planning on attending. In addition, my father has not been in any additional trouble and has had perfect behavior since. Plus, it is not a drug charge either. Plus my father had a very good GPA at the end of his Bachelor's program. Do you think he can get in Grad school?

  2. #2
    Per Ardua Metamorphosis's Avatar
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    Wouldn't it be more productive to ask the University than TypeC?
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  3. #3
    Senior Member The Great One's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Metamorphosis View Post
    Wouldn't it be more productive to ask the University than TypeC?
    We asked the bachelor's program advisers and all they said, was "it won't NECESSARILY exclude him". Basically, he has to put in an application at the college to see if they would admit him. However, the application is $30 and we don't want to waste that money on nothing, if he can't get in. I'm wondering if anyone else on this site has had a similar experience.

  4. #4
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    I would assume the situation is similar to most application situations where the potential student has a significant "downside", such as a run of terrible grades, or a very low test score, or otherwise. If the rest of his application is strong and he can write a good explanation of why he did that, what he's learned from it, and why it will make him a better student, then I would imagine, especially as an older adult, he has a fighting chance. It will probably be important for him to make sure he does that in a way that does not frame himself as either a victim or an abuser, just as a human who got caught up in a hard situation, has lawfully made up for it, and that he will not be a problem to the university because of it. It might also be worth mentioning how hard he has found it to be on the fringe of society now, and to always have his past held against him. That could become a very interesting cultural / anthropological study... certainly something that most academics have not experienced from the inside. It seems to be an academic trend to be into rehabilitation over continued punishment, anyway.

    Regardless it would seem to be worth $30 to try.

  5. #5
    Honor Thy Inferior Such Irony's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Great One View Post
    Hey folks,

    I just had a quick question: If my father has a felony can he get into the master's program at a University? Back in 2004, my father got power of attorney for my Grandmother. He took care of my Grandmother, bathed her, took her to her doctor's appointments and everything. He also has this sister of his that is basically the worst form of human life. She never saw my grandmother, never took care of her, and never even called her, or even gave her a birthday card. In 2004, my father got the idea that it was legal to spend my Grandmother's money as he saw fit so that he would get it all and my Aunt wouldn't get any. After all, he figured that he was taking care of my Grandma, and my aunt never saw her, so why should she get any of the money? He even checked with a lawyer and the lawyer said that he could do anything that he wanted with the money, and he couldn't be penalized by court of law for it.

    In 2007, she took my father to court and pressed charges against my father. Most of the lawyers and even the judge that this should be a civil case and not a criminal one, but my aunt was so bloodthirsty that she went for the jugular and said, "She wanted to see my father in jail". Anyway, so he got charged with two crimes, "Neglect of the Elderly not resulting in great bodily harm" and "Exploitation of the Elderly". He was convicted of two felonies and was sent to prison in 2008.

    However, he was very well behaved in prison and got out early for good behavior. Finally, in March of 2011, he got out of prison. Every since then, my father has had almost an impossible time finding a job. He was an English teacher in the public school system for 20 years, and they told him that he can't go back with his felony. My father is literally reduced to taking fast food jobs now even though he has numerous years of experience and a bachelor's degree in communications.

    My question is, with my father's felonies will he be a able to get into college for a master's program? Keep in mind that he already has a bachelor's degree from the University that he is planning on attending. In addition, my father has not been in any additional trouble and has had perfect behavior since. Plus, it is not a drug charge either. Plus my father had a very good GPA at the end of his Bachelor's program. Do you think he can get in Grad school?
    I don't know all of the details of your father's situation but from what I've read here, it sounds like your father is basically a good person who was unjustly accused and as as a result his life was ruined. I really hope your father can find a grad school that can see past his criminal history and let him in.

    Can the father make a legal case for suing the aunt for accusing him of a felony and basically ruining his life?
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  6. #6
    On a mission Usehername's Avatar
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    How would they know that? Graduate programs are notorious for lacking data on their students. The first line of defense is the institution's graduate school itself, though, and maybe they would know (graduate school = umbrella for that institution's collection of programs across many disciplines). I would call up a few graduate schools at similar institutions that he's not applying to, and ask how they handle that kind of case, or if they collect that data at all. I don't know but I would presume that they probably wouldn't be able to know if you didn't add that information in. You don't have to disclose a felony, do you? I don't know these things. I come from boring people. What's going to be a problem is accounting for the time he spent in prison on his CV.

    Also, if I were him, I'd look at technical communications MAs, because it sounds like he's going for practical purposes and those have the best job successes for his discipline. Actually, I'd look at technical communication PhDs that fully fund you in exchange for teaching intro classes, and then bail with the MA. (MA programs cost money, PhD programs can pay you.)
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  7. #7
    Senior Member The Great One's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    I would assume the situation is similar to most application situations where the potential student has a significant "downside", such as a run of terrible grades, or a very low test score, or otherwise. If the rest of his application is strong and he can write a good explanation of why he did that, what he's learned from it, and why it will make him a better student, then I would imagine, especially as an older adult, he has a fighting chance. It will probably be important for him to make sure he does that in a way that does not frame himself as either a victim or an abuser, just as a human who got caught up in a hard situation, has lawfully made up for it, and that he will not be a problem to the university because of it. It might also be worth mentioning how hard he has found it to be on the fringe of society now, and to always have his past held against him. That could become a very interesting cultural / anthropological study... certainly something that most academics have not experienced from the inside. It seems to be an academic trend to be into rehabilitation over continued punishment, anyway.

    Regardless it would seem to be worth $30 to try.
    Well, I found out that he has to take undergrad two more undergrad courses first in order to get into grad school. So we are pushing for that first. However, we are hoping for the best.

    Quote Originally Posted by SuchIrony View Post
    I don't know all of the details of your father's situation but from what I've read here, it sounds like your father is basically a good person who was unjustly accused and as as a result his life was ruined. I really hope your father can find a grad school that can see past his criminal history and let him in.

    Can the father make a legal case for suing the aunt for accusing him of a felony and basically ruining his life?
    Well, I don't think he can sue her for fucking up his life. However, he does owe restitution, and that he has to pay every month. However, my aunt feels bad for what she did to my dad, so she said that my father doesn't have to pay restitution back to her and she will forego it. However, in order for that to happen, my Dad would have to find the money to pay for a lawyer, just to go back to court to say that he doesn't have to pay restitution. It's a big mess.

  8. #8
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Great One View Post
    Well, I found out that he has to take undergrad two more undergrad courses first in order to get into grad school. So we are pushing for that first. However, we are hoping for the best.
    Good luck to him!!

  9. #9
    Senior Member The Great One's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    Good luck to him!!
    Yeah, I think that he can get in.

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