Whether you intend to start college or are already on campus, a conviction for driving under the influence can alter your life dramatically. It can also affect your future employment opportunities.

Policies concerning student misdemeanors and felonies differ among institutions of higher learning, but most will deny you admission if you lie about a DUI conviction. The same holds true for potential employers.

Being up front

On many college applications, you must list any criminal arrests or convictions. Some colleges and universities are more lenient than others. If you only have one DUI conviction, you may the school of your choice may still admit you as long as you have either completed alcohol counseling or agree to sign up for it. If you are already an admitted student, the policies of the school you are attending will determine how to treat your arrest or conviction. For example, you may have to report the incident to the administration within a certain number of days. Failure to do so might result in suspension. If law enforcement arrests you for drunk driving on multiple occasions, the college may decide to suspend your admission permanently. It is always in your best interest to be truthful.

Scholarships and degrees

If have a DUI arrest or conviction, you may automatically be out of the running for the scholarship you hoped for. If you are planning to go to college for a program that requires a license, such as law or nursing, the state agency that issues the license may not grant one to you if you have a DUI felony conviction on your record or multiple misdemeanor DUIs.

Pursuing a career

A DUI mark on your record can follow you into the working world. Some employers may not be able to hire you because they view you as a safety risk in terms of driving or operating equipment. One of the problems for the employer is that if they know of your drinking and driving background but hire you anyway and you injure someone, the company could face a lawsuit. Their insurance rates might also increase. In short, if you have aspirations for college and beyond, you should think about the consequences of drinking and driving. There are so many ways a DUI conviction could affect your future.