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Leave of Absence or Withdrawal

Name of Policy: Leave of Absence and Withdrawal Policy

Date of Last Revision: March 6, 2019

Any student of Cambridge College may request a personal leave of absence, a medical leave of absence, and/or a withdrawal from the College. This policy sets out the general guidelines and procedures for requesting a leave of absence or withdrawal. The College’s specific schools and departments may require additional procedures for requesting leave and gaining readmission. Any student who wishes to request a leave of absence or withdrawal should discuss the request with the corresponding academic advisor or the Office of Student Affairs before making the request. The student must also meet with the Office of Student Financial Services prior to any leave request regardless the reason to review financial obligations and any impact on financial aid eligibility.

Requesting a Personal Leave of Absence

A student may request a personal (i.e., non-medical) leave of absence for no less than academic term and only up to 180 days in any 12 month period. Typically, the student must make the request at least one month prior to the start of the first semester for which the student is requesting the leave of absence. Only in exceptional circumstances will the College grant a personal leave of absence that is requested after the one-month deadline or after the start of the semester. All requests for a personal leave of absence must be made in writing and submitted to the Student Leave Review Committee (composed of the Dean of Student Affairs, a representative from the academic school, a representative from the Registrar’s Office and a representative from student financial services). The request must state the reason(s) for the leave of absence and must be signed and dated by the student. All requests must be reviewed and approved by the Student Leave Review Committee. If the committee determines that there is any financial impact, the request must be forwarded to the VPFA for final approval.

Requesting a Medical Leave of Absence

A student may request a medical leave of absence based on a medical issue pertaining to the student. All requests for a medical leave of absence must be made in writing and submitted to the Student Leave Review Committee (composed of the Dean of Student Affairs, a representative from the academic school, a representative from the Registrar’s Office and a representative from student financial services). For foreseen situations a student must make the request at least one month prior to the start of the first semester for which the student is requesting the medical leave of absence but no request will be considered retroactively once the term of the leave request ends as per the academic calendar of that year. However, since medical situations often result from emergencies, those would be considered exceptional circumstances and the College may still grant a medical leave of absence that is requested after the one-month deadline or after the start of the semester. The request must state the reason(s) for the leave of absence and must be signed and dated by the student health care proxy or next of kin. The College may require that the student provide medical documentation from a licensed care provider to support the request for medical leave. All request must be approved by the Student Leave Review Committee. If the committee determines that there is any financial impact, the request must be forwarded to the VPFA for final approval.

Guidelines for Personal and Medical Leaves of Absence

Leaves of absence will be granted only to students who have a reasonable expectation of returning to the College. Students who are absent from the College for one or more semesters without officially taking leave of absence may jeopardize their ability to return to the program. Mere absences from class does not reduce financial obligations or guarantee that final grades will not be recorded.

If a student is granted a leave of absence after the start of the semester, the student’s grades and financial obligations will be determined in accordance with the College’s policies on withdrawals and financial obligations/refunds. An approval of a leave of absence does not guarantee that a student will remain able to complete degree or program requirements within the time frame set by the applicable school or department.

A student who is out on a leave of absence is not permitted to participate in other College programming or activities, unless such programs or activities are open generally to the public.

A leave of absence may, depending on the circumstances, impact a student’s obligation to make repayments on federal financial aid. Any failure to return to the College following a leave of absence may also affect the student’s repayment obligations. Students must discuss any leave of absence with the corresponding academic advisor or the Office of Student Affairs before making the request. The student must also meet with the Office of Student Financial Services prior to any leave request regardless the reason to review financial obligations and any impact on financial aid eligibility.

Process for Readmission

Any student who wishes to return to the College after a leave of absence must complete the “Returning Student Reinstatement” form and ensure that all past due balances are paid to the college prior to being readmitted. The form must be signed, dated and submitted to the Registrar’s Office no later than one month prior to the desired reinstatement date.

A student who seeks reinstatement following a medical leave of absence may be required to provide medical documentation demonstrating that the student’s health permits his/her/their readmission.  The College reserves the right to impose additional conditions on reinstatement from a medical leave, including but not limited to: the length of time on leave; the submission of appropriate medical and non-medical documentation; the student’s consent that his/her/their medical provider discuss the student’s condition with College; an independent evaluation of the student’s condition by College employees or College-appointed clinicians; and/or the student’s consent to use certain College or outside professional services. Students who fail to return to the College after a period of 5-years are required to reapply through Admissions 

All requests for reinstatement must be approved by Registrar’s Office.  The College’s decision to grant a leave of absence does not guarantee that the student will be reinstated to the College.  In deciding whether to readmit a student, the College will consider all relevant factors, including the student’s standing at the College, the student’s academic record, the student’s activities and conduct during the leave, the student’s fitness for readmission, etc.  The College shall also require the student to pay any outstanding balances owed to the College as a condition to readmission.  The College retains full discretion as to whether, and under what conditions, a student will be granted readmission following a leave of absence. 

Withdrawals from Cambridge College

A student may decide to leave the College without any intention to return to the College to complete his/her/their studies.  In order to officially withdraw, the student must complete the “Withdrawal from the College Form”.

Financial Impact of Leave of Absence or Withdrawal

The financial impact of a leave of absence or withdrawal depends on when the student takes the leave/withdraws.  All financial calculations are determined by the date the leave of absence or withdrawal becomes effective.  For purposes of this policy, the effective date of a leave of absence or withdrawal is the date on which the student files his/her/their written, signed request for the leave of absence or the appropriate withdrawal paperwork.

If a student takes a leave of absence or withdraws during the Fall or Spring semesters, financial calculations are determined by the following table:

 

Time Period 

% of Refund

Before add/drop deadline (within first two weeks of term)

100%

During the third week of term

75%

During the fourth week of term

50%

During the fifth week of term

25%

Thereafter

0%

 

 

Date of Withdrawal from Intensive courses

% of Refund

Prior to beginning of term

100% refund

During and after week one

75%

During and after week two

25%

Week three and thereafter

0%

 

Refunds only apply to self-pay students. If a student receives Title IV funds, s/he is not eligible for refund.

Students who receive federal financial aid and take leave of absence/withdraw during a semester will have their financial aid adjusted in accordance with the Return of Title IV Funds regulations.  Under the regulations, the amount of federal financial aid that a student “earns” in a semester is based on the number of calendar days on which the student attended class. Students who complete more than 60 percent of the semester are considered to have earned 100% of their financial aid for that term.  If a student receiving federal financial aid completely withdraws from classes before completing 60% of the term, the College must determine how much of the financial aid was earned up to the time of withdrawal.  The College makes this determination by dividing the number of calendar days the student attended classes by the total number of calendar days in the term, and then multiplying that quotient by the total federal funds that were disbursed to the student during the term (for example, if the student attended 50% of the term, the student would have earned 50% of the aid disbursed).  The Return of Title IV Funds regulations do not apply to private loans, state grants, or outside scholarships. 

Annual student fees are assessed to students upon their enrollment and are non-refundable, regardless of whether the student completes the full academic year or a given term at the College.

A student granted a leave of absence is not considered to have withdrawn, and no Return to Title IV funds is required. Upon the student’s return from the leave, if all requirements for eligibility were submitted before the leave of absence, he or she continues to earn the Title IV aid previously awarded for the period.