College can be one of the most memorable times in a young adult’s life. It can give them a chance to learn about themselves, discover their passions and meet lifelong friends. But at the same time, college can come with many risky temptations, including drugs and alcohol.
Sadly, if students aren’t careful, their substance use could result in them getting a DUI. Such a charge could result in long-term consequences that impose significant challenges in their lives.
According to the Alcohol Rehab Guide, around 60% of college students admitted to drinking in the past month and nearly 2 in 3 of them engaged in binge drinking. While partying is often part of a regular college experience, students can face some significant setbacks if they get caught driving under the influence.
Potential consequences students can face
Here’s how a DUI could impact them:
- They have to pay hefty fines: People in college often don’t have much money. Typically, college students spend their cash on books, rent and activities with friends. However, students who receive a DUI charge may have to pay exorbitant penalties. Here in Georgia, a fine for a first-time DUI offense can cost up to $1000. The amount often depends on the judge’s decision.
- They could potentially lose their scholarships: Students who receive scholarships often work very hard to get them. Unfortunately, if that student gets a DUI, police may notify the university about the incident. Depending on the university’s reaction, the student could risk losing their scholarship funds.
- They could be at risk for FAFSA suspension: On top of scholarships, students convicted of a DUI could risk losing financial aid. Luckily, there are steps students can take to redeem their federal support. For instance, while a student may face aid suspension if they get charged, they can get their suspension lifted if they pass an approved rehabilitation program.
- Their job prospects could get limited: Depending on a student’s desired career path, getting a DUI conviction could limit their job prospects. If the student wants to become a nurse, teacher, childcare worker or work in an industry that involves vehicle operation, they may have to change their trajectory. A DUI can also impact their work search, as they often have to list any previous convictions on a job application.
Getting charged doesn’t mean automatic guilt
Just because a student blew over the legal limit doesn’t always mean they’re instantly convicted. In these instances, students and their parents may want to seek assistance to get these charges reduced or dismissed.