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Criminal Background Policy

The University of Texas School of Dentistry must abide by requirements of hospitals and other agencies in which students may have clinical experiences. Clinical agencies used for rotation/external experiences have the same requirements for students as those required of employees (criminal background checks and, in some cases, drug screens). The rationale for extending these requirements to dental and dental hygiene students and faculty is the concept of due diligence and competency. Therefore, an offer of acceptance is conditioned upon the successful completion of a criminal background check and is required prior to matriculation in the Dental Education Program at the School of Dentistry. The School of Dentistry requires this criminal background screening process following conditional acceptance and prior to enrollment.

Since the external clinical experiences are an essential component of the curriculum and in attaining competency, those having a background barring participation could not successfully complete the curriculum.

Individuals who do not give permission to the conduct of the criminal background check or who fail to provide the report as required will not be allowed to matriculate into the dental and dental hygiene education program.

An independent vendor will be identified by the School of Dentistry to provide the criminal background screening, and matriculants will be responsible for requesting the report and paying the fee of approximately $50. Copies of the report shall go to UTSD and to the matriculant. The matriculant will be informed 1) of how to contact the independent vendor to challenge the accuracy or completeness of the report and 2) that the independent vendor was not involved in any decision that may adversely affect the matriculant. All information will be separately maintained in a confidential file. The background check document will be destroyed upon graduation/separation from the institution. The report shall span the prior seven year period, and shall include all convictions and deferred adjudications.

Validated background reports found to be in conflict with responses on the application may be grounds for withdrawal of an offer of enrollment based upon submission of false or misleading information on the application.

It is anticipated that background checks will be honored for the duration of the student’s enrollment in the program if the participating student has not had a break in the enrollment. A student who has had a break in enrollment may be required to have another background check. A break in enrollment is defined as withdrawal from a program and readmission. A student on Leave of Absence (LOA) is considered to be in continuous enrollment.

For Questions regarding the Criminal Background Check policy and procedures, please call the Office of Student Affairs at 713-486-4151.