When you first get to college, you may feel a sense of overwhelming freedom-no parents, no boundaries and no supervision during free time at night and on the weekends. For many incoming freshmen, this is their first chance to live on their own, set their own schedules and make their own decisions as they enjoy the college lifestyle.
Given their newly-discovered freedom and independence from adult restrictions, some college students may feel like they live in a bubble, free from the outside world’s rules and regulations. In this bubble, they are free to try new things, take new courses, stay up late, change their lifestyles and discover who they truly want to be when they grow up. Part of the college experience is growing and learning how to exist on your own, but when students take it too far, they may forget about the real-world consequences of their actions.
College vs. the “Real World”
College students often think that their four or five or however many years spent obtaining a degree are part of a trial period during which time their actions have less (if any) consequences or impact on their futures. This time of experimentation and change is good, and part of a healthy college experience, but students must be sure to understand that their college lives are part of their eventual adulthood that will can have a substantial impact on their futures.
Once a student graduates and leaves campus, the common mentality is that this transition marks the beginning of “real life,” and the student must grow up and act like an adult because now, actions matter. But the time to start preparing for “real life” is during college and many students do not realize this until it is too late.
Most college students spend some of their time at school partying, with drinks and drugs more readily available and fewer questions asked. Offenses such as drunk and disorderly, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, possession of small amounts of marijuana or other illegal substances, underage drinking and others may seem to be no big deal at the time, especially when punishments at the college level are typically write ups, demerits or discussions with your resident assistant or housing administrator. But if you are actually arrested or cited for one of these crimes by area law enforcement, you could end up tarnishing your permanent criminal record, which becomes very relevant when you leave college and start the process of finding a job.
Pleading guilty to a misdemeanor may not seem particularly detrimental, especially while you are young and in college. But in today’s job market, the competition is fierce, and any advantage-or disadvantage-is subject to intense scrutiny. A State College drug defense attorney knows that the best way students can protect their futures is by staying out of trouble as much as possible and obtaining legal counsel for even the most minor crimes, if they do get arrested.
At Rehmeyer & Allatt Attorneys at Law, we represent students facing charges ranging from DUI to drug possession. To discuss your case and the options available to you, contact one of our attorneys today.