Is there a "scientologist" exception?

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WestCoast

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Post Wed Apr 16, 2008 1:06 am

Is there a "scientologist" exception?

Hi guys,

I am a newbie so I'm sorry if this is a stupid question.

Have any of you had success with colleges (or any other institution requiring you to have a documented past including jobs/academics) by simply explaining that you were trapped in Scientology? An essay on that would make a killer "personal statement," surely!

Of course, that doesn't get rid of a requirement to have a GED or equivalent and the basic skills you would need in freshman year, but it sounds like at least some of you done this, even if you had to choose between getting a GED and eating. Unfortunately colleges these days want a resume with no gaps that includes not only jobs, but academics, volunteering, sports, arts, basically the whole over-programmed adolescent experience. At least, from Wog-world applicants. Scientology deprives you of the chance to experience the wonders of the overprogrammed adolescence that is "normal" now in the US.

I'm curious, because it seems like one of the worst real-life effects of growing up in Scientology is that it's both financially and practically hard to get a college education, and college is pretty much required for so many professions these days. You leave the cult financially broke, emotionally harmed, and with gigantic obstacles to many career paths. We should start a scholarship fund,
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Clickman

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Post Wed Apr 16, 2008 1:13 am

When I left many years ago, I was a High School grad, but never went to college. I was 32 with over 13 years in the Sea Org and 17 years in Scientology.

Resume was a problem at that time. I met with a career counselor and we worked out job equivalents for the senior positions I had held in Scientology. I told them that Scientology if contacted would never verify that I was even working there in the past.

However the direction I went in was to go to work for a company along with several other former Scientologists with no experience and we learned on the job. This then turned into other opportunities and I eventually went into business for myself and have been successful at this.

So my past now doesn't hinder me at all. I know it is tough though for those that recently have left.
If it's not fun and doesn't make you happy, DON'T DO IT !!!

School of Hard Knocks
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ImOut

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Post Wed Apr 16, 2008 1:15 am

WestCoast,

My daughter is going thru this now. At 22 she decided she needs a college education to get beyond her dead-end job. So far, without HS Diploma or GED, she's been accepted at Phoenix University. The issue that she really didn't graduate or get a GED may come up later. I just don't know.

She dropped out of HS to join the SO, even though I didn't want her to. And I've since learned that she didn't really learn much while attending the private Scn run schools I sent her to.

I'm hoping she can deal with college. Fortunately, her boyfriend is really smart and can possibly help her.

The biggest problem is paying for it. I'm not in a position and she's not yet 24 to get grants. And her bio-dad didn't file the right divorce papers so we can't go after him for the 10 years of child support he didn't pay.
Isn't it grand to be out!
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Holden Caulfield

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Post Wed Apr 16, 2008 1:17 am

Hi there,

Well, when I apply for graduate school in about a year from now, I will use this approach. This is something I actually avoided before as I never really wanted to discuss my Scilon background with people I don't know.

This past year, I've been taking a lot of creative writing courses at college and inevitably, my Scilon background has come up in many short stories and personal essays. I have only been met with curiosity from my instructors who all have pointed out to me that this gives me a unique vantage point and voice from which I can colour my hope-to-be-realized writing career.

I have come to a point where I can use it in the form of a personal essay or statement of purpose without sounding like a victim, which is the least of my intentions. I do have a unique experience in the sense that I was robbed of something that so many people take for granted. This, sadly, means that I've to some extent have had to work harder to make up for the missing parts, but on the other hand it makes me all the more focused.

I really hope it will work as I still to this day do not perform very good on entrance exams and that sort of thing. I am on the other hand good at voicing my thoughts and, if I may say so, a pretty good writer who wants to become even better and am willing to work hard at it. And I really want to go to grad school.
"If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth."
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NoSOat10

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Post Fri Apr 18, 2008 8:08 pm

I went to an unaccredited Scn school. I wasn't sure how well I'd do in a public education system, so I went to a junior college for two years where I developed a good transcript. I used that to get accepted into a university.

From my experience with Scn schools, the students may in lack formal education, but have developed a strong ability to study which in some ways is more important. I'd say the same was true also for SO members who joined young. Their ability to dive in and figure things out (out of necessity) is an incredible strength that would serve them very well in any setting.

I'm not sure how mentioning Scn in the personal essay thing would go over. If someone could really understand what being in the SO meant, I think they'd accept that applicant in a second. If you can survive in the SO, you are one tough cookie.
Don’t get interested in real estate. Don’t get interested in the masses of buildings, because that’s not important.
L. Ron Hubbard, Lecture Series: Anatomy of the Human Mind
Tape: The Genus of Dianetics and Scientology
Tape#: 6012C31
31 December 1960
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astra

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Post Mon Jul 07, 2008 8:46 pm

Re: Is there a "scientologist" exception?

WestCoast wrote:Hi guys,

I am a newbie so I'm sorry if this is a stupid question.

Have any of you had success with colleges (or any other institution requiring you to have a documented past including jobs/academics) by simply explaining that you were trapped in Scientology? An essay on that would make a killer "personal statement," surely!

Of course, that doesn't get rid of a requirement to have a GED or equivalent and the basic skills you would need in freshman year, but it sounds like at least some of you done this, even if you had to choose between getting a GED and eating. Unfortunately colleges these days want a resume with no gaps that includes not only jobs, but academics, volunteering, sports, arts, basically the whole over-programmed adolescent experience. At least, from Wog-world applicants. Scientology deprives you of the chance to experience the wonders of the overprogrammed adolescence that is "normal" now in the US.

I'm curious, because it seems like one of the worst real-life effects of growing up in Scientology is that it's both financially and practically hard to get a college education, and college is pretty much required for so many professions these days. You leave the cult financially broke, emotionally harmed, and with gigantic obstacles to many career paths. We should start a scholarship fund,


I know someone who's essay about growing up in scientology helped get her into numerous top-rated colleges. She had a high school education, but only high school as she was in the cadet org up until age 15.

I know someone else who went to college and got a masters degree after never having gone to a real school in her life... she grew up in the cadet org and sea org. I don't know in depth how she made it happen, but it shows it is possible.

And I know one more person who got into a top university and graudated after a similar experience of no school, growing up in the sea org.

So it is possible to get into college without the traditional school background. And you can get into community college just by being 18 or having a GED. From there you can transfer to a university. Maybe a combination of good grades in community college, a recommendation from your professor and a good essay would get you quite far...
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jnice

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Post Tue Jul 08, 2008 5:55 pm

I have had to lie my way through job interviews ever since I left the SO. I never graduated HS, but luckily I have a great IQ and vocabulary, so you can't tell. I was an exec in the SO, so I just put a lot of WOG admin terms on my resume that would make sense in the normal workaday world. I never had a problem getting a job, ever. I did have to bend the truth though. When I left the SO, I had to figure everything out for myself. The internet, microsoft word, excel, everything self-taught the hard way. But I did it and anyone can do it if they put their mind to it.
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Rose129

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Post Sat Aug 16, 2008 2:06 pm

I've had a lot of trouble finding a job, I cant put the church on my resume (for obvious reasons, and because I live in the Bible belt) and thats all of my work experience. I got pulled out of HS to join staff, they of course swore that I would be able to get my GED, while on staff but then wouldn't actually give me time to study or a day off to go take the test. I can't get into school because my parents disconnected from me and you can't get financial aid without their financial info until you're 24. I was the Treas Sec when I was on staff, a post I agreed to take partially because I thought I would learn something I could use in "the wog world" later on, but of course no one cares that I'm a fully hatted Treas Sec, because, well that doesn't mean jack to them.
I'ts tough to have pulled off the impossible so many times on post and to know that you are more qualified than a lot of people to do a lot of things, but still to not even be able to get a job as a waitress.
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outlander

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Post Sat Aug 16, 2008 5:31 pm

WestCoast,

That is a very good question, and a very good tact, I use it in business all the time, and in my personal life, but have been afraid to use it in Scientology.

When I was a kid, about 10-12 - and my dad tried to sell dianetics to some of my teachers, word got out (remember, there was a national inquiry on Scientology in Australia), I got stoned (actually rocked), still have a scar on my forehead to cement the memory, the pole treatment (4-6 kids pick you up by each limb and look for the closest steel pole and ...) and attempts at the royal flush (head in the toilet), which was never successfully accomplished. Grew up in a very working class community, and aussie kids, as can all others, can be pretty brutal to people that are different or they don't understand. After this I had a deep subconscious need not to publically pronouce my membership in Scientology.

Back then and even as recent as 5 years ago, there was no real public awareness of the plight of people trying to leave the COS, or the challenges of being a recovering Scientologist. Rather than compassion, you were outcast (once a scientologist, always a wack job).

I would venture to say that things have changed, public awareness and compassion for the plight of recovering Scientologists is much better.

I have had much success in life, when venturing into any transaction, to reveal the warts ahead of time. I will try this with Scientology as well. Not that easy to stone me now or give me the pole treatment!

Very good point.
Create that of your life that which you would like to see in a changed world. Ghandi
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Iknowtoomuch

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Post Sat Aug 16, 2008 6:41 pm

I was writing down "volunteering for my church full time" ....yeah for many years.... :shock:
"Everybody has a right to believe what they want to believe. But I don't believe that anybody has a right to trick anybody, to hurt anybody, to harm some body, for their own purposes." - Jason Beghe
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doubleVee

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Post Mon Aug 18, 2008 2:00 am

I found several points in my favour:
1) getting a GED is easy, ridiculously so. All you have to do is go take the test, there's no mandatory hours/credits like taking adult ed for a diploma. The test is eeaasy.
2) nobody cares if you got a GED or a diploma. For most job apps there's 1 box for both. The only military branch that cares is the USMC (must have actual diploma -- but they'll help you get it FAST. And if you are going into the military, you don't really have to care about this post.)
3) In my experience colleges don't care what kind of paper you have saying you can do the work. You just test in and get assigned to a class based on your ability. (I'm not talking about ivy leage here obviously -- my experience is with community college and the local U.) Then all that matters is that you can do the work.

I got my GED at 15 in the SO. I had almost no education whatsoever growing up. At 25 I went to the local community college and started taking classes. It was great. I had trouble with the math (not my subject) but after 2 semesters of classes had a 3.5 gpa. I'm not saying I'm some kind of genius -- far from it. If I can do it, anybody can! After getting a 2 year degree from the CC I'm transferring to the university.

That's what I would HIGHLY recommend to anyone who is in the place I was. The only reason I had to wait so long was that you have to be 25 to apply for a federal student aid grant separately from your parents -- even if you were emancipated and have no idea where they are, like I was. The government still counts their income as yours! :roll: If your parents are in the SO that's fine, they are too poor to disqualify you. Mine were definitely too rich. (Also you have to have been residing in your state for 1 year or more. For us exceedingly-mobile kids that can cause a problem.)

I found that I was lacking in study skills. The "study skills" that you learn in Scientology are crap. I didn't know how to take notes, or how to write an essay (what's a topic sentence?) but I was lucky enough to have friends, an intelligent beaux, and the college was more helpful than any school I had ever been in. They have free tutors and everything, like they actually care if you pass!
Somebody has to speak for these people.... no more running. I aim to misbehave.... If you can't do something smart, do something right. (Serenity)
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evan

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Post Sat Nov 08, 2008 11:27 am

I vaguely remember taking placement tests for my first public school (high school), and from there I was golden. I'm in community college now, working on an AA transfer, which is really something I should have started a long time ago, but I had other goals after high school...

So long as you have a GED, which like doublevee said is a cakewalk (though I personally have never taken it, I have a diploma), you can take community college classes, which if you're over 24 are free, and then just transfer into a four-year university. So long as you're not running for president, what middle/elementary school equivalent you were in makes no difference. If you're applying for a decent job, your high school or GED isn't going to be on your resume anyways.

I grew up in private scientology schools, but when I hit high school, I remember asking my dad if I had some kind of college fund, since I was getting OK grades and my high school teachers said I should go to college. He just laughed. :D I can barely imagine the money wasted on scientology school tuition, IAS memberships, etc. I'd probably have a fucking PhD or a Porche by now.
"And stay happy!" - Philip Gale
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speckledtrout

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Post Tue Dec 23, 2008 5:46 pm

No, I didn't use it (mostly because I wasn't "in" very long), but it sounds like a good idea, especially at the bigger "name-brand" schools, they are a sucker for that sort of thing.
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mrtampa

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Post Sun Aug 23, 2009 7:18 pm

I do not think you would stand a chance to get a college with an education you got from ABLE school. They teach Scientology and they barely touch the subject of the sciences. I had to deal with kids getting trained from Cadet school (I myself did 3 yrs of college on sciences before being a SO supervisor) and I have seen those kids having trouble with multiplying numbers, putting sentences together, etc.
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Avery1

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Post Thu Aug 27, 2009 1:12 am

It's never too late to get your education underway. Look at John Duignan. He was in the SO for more than 20 years. Once he escaped he went back to university.

Sea Org members and CoS Staff might not know a lot of the things that publically educated people might know. But they know how to work hard, and that, in the end, means they will succeed.

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