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Leave of Absence

A leave of absence will be granted when the student has filed an approved petition with the Registrar's Office.  The leave of absence petition form, which must be approved by the department chair, or graduate coordinator and school dean, shall specify the reasons for the leave and the duration of the leave.  A student granted a leave of absence has a commitment from the university to be reinstated in good standing.  This commitment must be validated by a written notice of return from leave for the quarter of return specified in the leave application submitted to the Registrar's Office no later than two weeks prior to the prescheduling of continuing students for that quarter.  The Leave of Absence Form can be found on the Forms & Services page.

The reason for requesting a leave must be stated completely and clearly.  Students may petition for a leave of absence for such reasons as:  professional or academic opportunities, like travel or study abroad, or participation in field study or research projects, medical reason, including pregnancy, major surgery, or other health-related circumstances; and financial reasons, such as the need to work for a specified period in order to resume study with adequate resources.  Approval will depend upon the significance of the leave in furthering the student's educational objective.  It is the student's responsibility to demonstrate the significant relationship between the leave of absence and the progress toward the educational objective.  Leaves may be granted for a maximum of two years or eight consecutive quarters.  A request for leave of absence must be filed prior to the period of absence.  Retroactive leave requests will not be approved.

Failure to return from leave as specified in the approved petition will be considered withdrawal from the university.  Under such circumstances, re-enrollment will require a full application for readmission under the same circumstances as any new or returning applicant including enrollment in the curriculum in effect at the time of re-enrollment.

Students may "stop-out" without filing for a leave of absence if the absence does not exceed two quarters.

International students are reminded that immigration laws governing their visas generally do not allow them to take advantage of the "stop-out" university policy.  International students should always consult with their International Student Advisor before attempting a leave of absence.