Students can download the Leave of Absence and Return form or pick up a copy at the Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs Office. Upon completion, the form must be reviewed and approved by both the Associate Vice President for Undergraduate Studies and the Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs.
Students may request a leave of absence from studies for one or two consecutive semesters’ absence from Plymouth State University (this policy applies only to continuous fall and spring semesters; winter and summer sessions are not considered to be a part of a student’s regular continuous enrollment). A leave of absence is appropriate if the student intends to return to the University following a temporary absence for compelling reasons, which may include but are not limited to:
- Military service
- Family emergencies
- Medical reasons
Eligible students who apply for and receive a leave of absence retain their status as an active student which guarantees retention of their PSU email account, access to myPlymouth, and the ability to register online. No readmission application or fees are required if the student re-enrolls for a fall or spring semester immediately following the leave of absence. If there is no intent to return to the University, or if a student is unable to return following the leave of absence period, the regular withdrawal procedure should be followed.
Financial Aid Implications: If a student currently receives financial aid, their financial aid award will be reevaluated as a result of the leave. If the date of the leave precedes the start of classes, the financial aid will simply be cancelled. If the date of the leave is after the start of classes, the financial aid award will be adjusted according to federal regulations and institutional policies. The decision to take a leave of absence will not affect a student’s eligibility for financial aid upon his or her approved return as an active student. However, students must adhere to all published deadlines in applying for financial aid before returning.
Federal Loan Repayment: A student who is granted an approved leave of absence will remain in an in-school status (maximum 180 days) for Title IV loan repayment purposes. If a student on an approved leave of absence fails to return, the school must report to the loan servicer the student’s change in enrollment status as of the withdrawal date.
The last date of attendance, for loan repayment purposes, for a student who does not return on at least a one-half time status (6 credit hours) for the following semester will be the date the student began the leave of absence, or the withdrawal date. This may deplete all or part of the one-time repayment grace period of the student’s Federal Direct Loans and may result in these loans being immediately placed in repayment status.
Note: Students granted a leave of absence for a spring semester must enroll at least half time (6 credit hours) during the Summer Semester to avoid the loss of their grace period. A student who has exhausted his or her grace period and is unable to begin repayment of a loan may apply for a deferment or forbearance of repayment.
Eligibility for a Leave of Absence
To be eligible for a leave of absence the following criteria must be met:
- The student must be matriculated during the semester in which the leave of absence is requested.
- The student must be in good academic standing.
- The student must not be subject to university initiated disciplinary action.
- The student must have no restrictions/holds on their registration.
- The student must provide documentation to support the leave of absence request.
Additional Conditions for a Leave of Absence
- Students have the right to request a leave of absence more than once, but may not exceed a total of two years for all approved requests.
- Students have the right to return earlier than the initially agreed upon return date.
- Students who do not return to Plymouth State University at the end of the leave of absence period will be withdrawn from the University and must follow all procedures for readmission if, in the future, they seek to re-enroll as a matriculated student.
- Students are not eligible to receive financial aid payments from the University during the leave of absence period.
- Plymouth State University will report any student granted a leave of absence as “approved leave of absence” in response to inquiries for enrollment verifications.
- Students may not live in on-campus residential facilities, attend classes, or seek/maintain university sponsored employment during a leave of absence. Students may not enroll in winterim or summer sessions if those alternative sessions fall within the time period of the requested leave of absence.
- Students are responsible for understanding all implications of a leave of absence, including but not limited to the following:
- Potential loss of financial aid
- Potential loss of health coverage
Steps for Returning from a Leave of Absence
A student returning from a leave of absence reactivates their matriculation by contacting the Registrar.