Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who conducts criminal background checks and drug tests, and who pays for them?

Criminal background checks and drug tests are conducted by CastleBranch, a third-party vendor, and are required even if the student has already completed one through another vendor, or, for another school. Students pay the $37 fee for the criminal background check (fees subject to change). The student pays the drug testing fee of $40 for most programs of study, or $44 for the Medical Lab Technology program (fees subject to change).

2. What does a criminal background check show? Can students see their results?

A criminal background check includes information from all counties of residence in the past ten years from the applicant's residency history. Reports will show any felony, misdemeanor, or DWI/DUI conviction and/or dismissal (excluding minor traffic violations). All results are stored securely with CastleBranch. Students can review their results by logging back into their CastleBranch account.

What if I have a charge or charges on my criminal background check?

Wake Tech sends flagged/positive reports to clinical sites as required by affiliation agreements. The sites have the right to deny placement to any student with a criminal background. Wake Tech will notify the student via telephone or email to the student’s Wake Tech address, and the Clinical Compliance Administrator will contact the student to discuss next steps. 

Clinical sites do not typically allow a student with a pending charge or court date to work in their facilities. Students with pending charges or court dates must submit a letter from a lawyer or official documentation from the Clerk of Court to the Health Sciences Clinical Compliance Administrator indicating the outcome of their case(s) by these deadlines:

  • For fall semester entry – by June 30
  • For spring semester entry – by October 31
  • For summer term entry – by March 31

Students who do not submit documentation by the deadline date will be removed from the acceptance or alternate list and must reapply for the next admission cycle.

4. What if a student believes a report contains false or inaccurate information?

A student who believes a criminal background check report contains false or inaccurate information should contact CastleBranch Customer Service (1-888-914-7279 or [email protected]) as soon as possible, and notify the Health Sciences Clinical Compliance Administrator. 

Can students meet with clinical site personnel to discuss or explain circumstances?

Students may not communicate directly with clinical sites. In some cases, a site may agree to review a letter of explanation, letters of recommendation (up to two), or other material pertaining to the criminal background check if submitted by the given deadline. 

NOTE: Explanations and recommendations do not guarantee that a clinical site will accept, re-consider, or change its original decision about accepting the student. 

5. What are the consequences of being denied placement by a clinical site?

A student who is denied clinical placement cannot complete the required clinical component of the program and will be dismissed from the program. 

NOTE: No exceptions will be made to college reimbursement policies. 

6. Is fingerprinting part of a criminal background check?

Fingerprinting is required as part of a criminal background check for Associate Degree Nursing students who have lived in NC for fewer than the past five years (consecutively). These students must submit a fingerprinting card to the City/County Bureau of Investigation or local police or sheriff for completion. Students are responsible for the additional fee of approximately $30 for fingerprinting.  

7.What if a student finishes or leaves a Health Sciences program but re-enrolls later?

Wake Tech may accept an existing criminal background check report if 1) it was conducted with CastleBranch for Wake Tech, and 2) if it is less than 6 months old. Typically a background check re-check will be required.

8. What if a student is charged with a new offense after the background check is completed?

The student is required to report any criminal arrest, charge, or conviction (excluding minor traffic violations) within three business days of its occurrence, in writing, to the Health Sciences Clinical Compliance Administrator.

A new charge will void the student's clinical clearance, and since the student will be unable to complete clinical training, the student would be dismissed from the program. The charge must first be resolved in order to be reviewed by clinical sites for the student to request re-entry into the program.

For more information, contact the Clinical Compliance Administrator, Barbara Smith: 919-747-0105 or [email protected].