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From the President

Posted: Thursday, May 14, 2020

Response to College Senate Recommendation: Policy on Leave of Absence, Withdrawal from College

At its April 10, 2020 meeting, the College Senate voted in favor of a resolution on a revision to the DOPS Policy on Leave of Absence, Withdrawal from College, Policy No. I:07:00, presented by the Standards for Students Committee.                                                         


Policy Number: I:07:00
Updated: December 2016
Subject: Leave of Absence, Withdrawal from College

The Undergraduate Application for Leave of Absence/Withdrawal from College form can be obtained in the Academic Advisement Office or in the student’s academic department office. Students in a major should begin the application process by conferring with their department chair. Undeclared students should meet with the coordinator of the Academic Advisement Office.

Refunds of tuition, if applicable, will be made on a prorated basis as outlined in the class schedule for that semester.

Financial aid recipients who withdraw or take a leave of absence may owe a refund of aid they received for the semester. For additional information about financial aid, contact

Leave of Absence

Matriculated undergraduate and graduate students who wish to leave the college for academic, financial, medical, military, or personal reasons may be granted leaves of absence for the fall or spring semesters only. 

A leave of absence (LOA) is a temporary interruption in a student’s program of study. An LOA cannot exceed 180 days in any 12-month period and may have a serious impact on a student’s financial aid.  Any student who received financial aid and is considering an LOA should consult with the Financial Aid Office before LOA approval to determine how their aid will be affected (e.g., grace period, repayment, failure to return as stipulated, etc.).

In accordance with federal regulations, 34 CFR 668.22 (d), the following criteria outlines the requirements to process an approved LOA:

  • The student must submit a completed Leave of Absence form for approval.  The form must state the reason(s) for the LOA request. An LOA cannot be granted for academic reasons (i.e. to keep a student from failing).

    » If a student submits a leave of absence before the start of a semester, the leave will start on the first day of the next semester (fall or spring).

    » If a student wishes to take a leave of absence during a semester already in progress, they must submit the paperwork no later than the last day to drop without financial penalty.  No leaves of absences will be granted after that date.

    » Retroactive leave of absence requests will not be approved.

    » Students can automatically remove their leave of absence status by registering for the semester in which they had originally planned to take a leave or for the following semester after the approved leave of absence.
  • There must be reasonable expectation that the student will return from LOA. A student granted an LOA is not to be considered withdrawn and no return of Title IV calculation is required.

    » Student borrowers are given a six-month grace period on most types of federal loans starting at the date enrollment ceases. During this time, lenders will treat the borrower’s loans as if the borrower were still enrolled in school full-time

    » Once a grace period is used on a specific loan, it will not be given again.

    » At the end of this six-month grace period, the student will be required to enter repayment on their federal educational loans until they return to school; however, deferment or forbearance options may be available if the student makes a request to their lender.
  • A student returning from an LOA must resume training at the same point in the academic program that they began the LOA.

    » Students who change their majors when they return will be required to meet the curriculum of the new program in place at the time of their return.
  • If a student does not register for classes within the 180 days requirement, the student is considered to have ceased attendance from the institution and a title IV return of funds calculation is required if the student received federal aid.
  • When a student returns from an LOA, the institution may not assess the student any additional institutional charges relative to reinstatement.

    »Students on an approved leave of absence that fail to return (for any reason) will be inactivated at the end of the following semester (fall or spring) and must apply for readmission to the college when they are interested in resuming their progress toward a degree.

    »Students who are not enrolled for three consecutive semesters will be readmitted using the catalog year of their readmittance.
  • Students who do not register for courses for the semester after their leave expires will be deactivated as students and must apply for readmission to the college when they are interested in resuming their progress toward a degree.
  • Upon return from a leave of absence, students will be allowed to complete the program requirements in place at the time they took the leave of absence. Students should seek financial aid eligibility consultation and academic advisement before registering for courses for their return semester.

Withdrawal from College

To maintain good academic standing and eligibility for readmission to the college, students finding it necessary to withdraw must do so officially. Failure to file for withdrawal will result in the recording of an E grade in each course in which the student is registered. When it is impossible to withdraw in person, it must be done in writing from the student to the Dean.

Students withdrawing officially with no outstanding obligations or commitments to the college are considered to be in good academic standing.

The Chair and Associate Dean must sign the Withdrawal from College form. A request to withdraw from the college must be received in the Registrar’s Office no later than the last working day before the Critique and Evaluation Period.

I hereby accept the recommendation of the College Senate and charge the provost with responsibility for overseeing the implementation of this policy change and for communicating the change to the campus community.