Academic Bulletin 2023-2024 
    
    Apr 15, 2024  
Academic Bulletin 2023-2024

Leaves of Absence and Withdrawal from the College


 

Short-Term Absences from Campus

  1. ​Students leaving campus due to health reasons (e.g., physical or mental health needs) or due to the death of a family member or friend and other reasons should contact their class dean, who will then notify professors and other need-to-know offices. If they are unsure of who their class dean is they should email studentsuccess@allegheny.edu..
  2. Please note that this is a notification only. Any student leaving campus is responsible for working with their professors in making up any missed course work. Please refer to the Class Attendance and Tests, Papers, and Examinations Policy sections of this handbook for additional information.

Voluntary Leaves of Absence

Students considering a Leave of Absence must consult their class dean, advisor, and others as appropriate, about the effect it will have on progress toward a degree, financial aid, and billing. Billing refunds for Leaves of Absence are governed by institutional policy; please contact the Office of Financial Services for information.

Students may apply to the Office of the Class Deans for a Leave of Absence when personal circumstances make a temporary absence advisable and a commitment to return to the College is evident. The length of the leave is determined by the student’s needs, but normally will not exceed one calendar year. Students may request a Leave of Absence from the College without grade penalty up until the last day of classes in any semester. Students taking a voluntary leave from the College in this manner generally may not apply to return within the same academic year in which they took a leave. Exceptions to this policy may be granted by the Dean for the Student Experience or their designee.

When a student takes a Leave of Absence from the College during the first two weeks of the semester, 14-week courses will not appear on the official transcript, but, as appropriate, will appear on the academic record. Students who take a Leave of Absence from the College between the conclusion of the second week of the semester and the last day of classes will receive the grade of “L” for all courses for which they are registered. This will not affect their grade point average. If a student takes a Leave of Absence after the last day of classes, the grades for that semester will be posted to the student’s record, and the student is subject to all applicable academic standing actions, including academic dismissal. Grades of X for Student-initiated Withdrawals taken prior to the leave will be posted to the student’s transcript, as will grades for Module or Short Courses completed prior to the leave.

A leave may include conditions for re-entry that will need to be met before the student is approved to return. The student will receive written notification of any conditions when the leave of absence is processed.

During a Leave of Absence, when applicable, financial aid and course registration arrangements are held for the student’s return. Students intending to return from a leave should contact the Office of the Class Deans to initiate the return process. Students returning from a Leave of Absence are not required to pay a deposit to return to campus. Once approved to return, students may be placed into housing; if the approval is completed before the Housing Selection process begins, they may participate in the process. Additionally, once approved to return, students also may register for the next semester during the designated registration period. Housing and registration are contingent upon the student being in good financial standing with the institution.

A student taking a leave of absence who is a recipient of federal financial aid should consult the Office of Financial Aid about possible return of Title IV funds. Those students should also be aware that a semester in which they take a leave of absence may affect their ability to maintain minimum satisfactory academic progress and retain eligibility for federal financial aid.

Mandatory Leaves of Absence for Personal or Community Health/Safety Reasons

  1. The Dean for Student Life may place a student on a mandatory leave of absence following established Threat Assessment protocols.
  2. The Dean for Student Life will provide written notice to the student regarding the decision as to imposition of a mandatory leave. If a leave of absence is imposed, the written notice shall include (i) a time-frame when the student could be eligible to return; and (ii) the conditions the student would need to satisfy to be eligible for return. If a leave is not imposed, the Dean for Student Life may require conditions for the student’s continued enrollment at Allegheny.
  3. All reviews under this policy should be done in a reasonably timely manner. Where a student has been asked to remain off campus pending the review, every effort will be made by the Dean for Student Life to reach a decision within seven business days provided the student responds timely to requests for information and (if appropriate) evaluation.
  4. A student placed on mandatory leave of absence has the right to appeal to the Dean for the Student Experience. The appeal must be in writing, delineating the reason(s) why the student believes the decision is inappropriate. The appeal must be received within three days of receiving written notification of the decision to place the student on mandatory leave. The appeal may relate to the leave decision itself and/or the conditions imposed to return to school. The Dean for the Student Experience will review the student’s appeal and uphold, reverse or modify the decision. The Dean for the Student Experience’s decision shall be considered final.
  5. The length of any mandatory leave of absence will be determined on a case-by-case basis.
  6. Unless expressly permitted by the Dean for the Student Experience or the Dean for Student Life in writing, students on mandatory leave of absence are not permitted to be present on campus and are not permitted to engage in any College-related activities, including, but not limited to, attending classes, living in the residence halls, and/or participation in student organizations and related activities.  
  7. When a student who has been on a mandatory leave of absence pursuant to this policy wishes to return to the College, the student must submit a written request to the Dean for Student Life to return. The Dean for Student Life may require further evaluation of the student to determine readiness to return. The Dean for Student Life may confer or seek information from others to assist in making the determination. If the Dean for Student Life is not satisfied that the student is ready to return, they will notify the student in writing of the decision, including the reasons for the decision. A student not permitted to return may appeal the decision to the Dean for the Student Experience. The student will receive written notification of any conditions. Written requests for return from mandatory leave should be submitted no later than July 1 for the fall semester or November 15 for the spring semester.
  8. A leave of absence under this policy is an administrative process, not a disciplinary process. It is possible that conduct leading to a mandatory leave of absence under this policy may also be subject to review and sanctions under the College’s Student Code of Conduct.
  9. This process supersedes any student request for a voluntary leave or withdrawal
  10. International students on F-1 or J-1 visas are advised that a Mandatory Leave of Absence will likely affect their visa status and should consult with the International Student Services office.
  11. For information regarding the effect of a leave of absence under this policy on matters such as transcripts, registration, financial aid, housing and refund policies, see above.

Involuntary Leave for Non-Registration or Non-Attendance

Non-Registration: All continuing students must be registered for at least one credit by one week prior to the first day of classes in the Fall or Spring semester, or the day on which they are scheduled to move-in, whichever is earlier. All holds must be lifted and other conditions of registration met AND students must have registered for at least one credit prior to the posted deadline. Students who do not do so are deemed to have failed to resume study and are placed on a Leave of Absence from the College by action of the Dean for the Student Experience or their designee, effective the end of the prior semester attended. All other conditions of a leave of absence apply to these students.

If there are demonstrable, extenuating circumstances by which a student has not been able to meet the posted deadlines above, they may appeal to the Dean for the Student Experience. Exemptions of this kind will not be routinely granted. The decision of the Dean for the Student Experience in this matter is final.

New students who are attending Allegheny College for the first time in the Fall or Spring semesters and who deposited close to the deadlines above are granted a standing exemption so long as they are making concrete progress towards registration and payment.

Students expected to graduate in September will not be placed on leave via this policy at the start of the Fall semester. Students expected to graduate in January will not be placed on leave via this policy at the start of Spring semester.

Non-Attendance: A student who is registered for classes but who fails to return to campus by the end of the add/drop period for the semester is deemed to have failed to begin attendance, and will be placed on a Leave of Absence from the College by action of the Dean of Students, effective the end of the prior semester attended. All other conditions of a leave of absence apply to these students. 

Involuntary Leave for Unpaid Past Due Balance

Any student who is registered for Fall classes but who has a past due balance in excess of $1,000 will be placed on a leave of absence (for the Fall semester) if the balance remains unpaid by May 31. Students in this category will be eligible to return in the following Spring semester, assuming that their balance is paid in full and any other conditions of re-entry have been met. A student who wishes to return immediately in the Fall term and has otherwise met the conditions for return may request an exemption from the Dean for the Student Experience, but such exceptions will be granted rarely. For information regarding the effect of a leave of absence under this policy on matters such as transcripts, registration, financial aid, housing and refund policies, see above.

Voluntary Withdrawal From the College 

Students wishing to withdraw from only a single course while still completing other registered courses should consider dropping the course (see “Adding and Dropping Courses ” in the “Course Registration ” section), if still permitted, or a Withdrawal if the drop deadline has already passed (see “Withdrawing From a Course ” in the “Course Registration ” section).

Students desiring to withdraw completely from the College must complete the withdrawal form. The enrollment deposit will not be refunded. Students may withdraw from the College without grade penalty up until the last day of classes in any semester. Students withdrawing form the College may not apply to return within the same academic year in which they withdrew.

When a student withdraws from the College during the first two weeks of the semester, 14-week courses will not appear on the official transcript, but, as appropriate, will appear on the academic record. Students who withdraw from the College between the conclusion of the second week of the semester and the last day of classes will receive the grade of “WC” for all courses for which they are registered. This will not affect their grade point average. If a student withdraws after the last day of classes, the grades for that semester will be posted to the student’s record, and the student is subject to all applicable academic standing actions, including academic dismissal.

A withdrawal may include conditions for re-entry that will need to be met before the student is approved to return. The student will receive written notification of any conditions when the withdrawal is processed.

Students who withdraw are expected to return their student identification card to the Office of Public Safety. Students who withdraw from the College are expected to leave the campus within 48 hours. Short term exceptions beyond the deadline may be granted by the Dean for Student Life to allow the student sufficient time to make alternate arrangements. Withdrawn students lose all privileges of enrollment until such time as they are readmitted. Billing refunds for withdrawal are governed in the provisions set forth by the Financial Services Office.

A student withdrawing from the College who is a recipient of federal financial aid should consult the Office of Financial Aid about possible return of Title IV funds.

Re-entry after Leave of Absence or Withdrawal

All outstanding financial balances must be paid before re-entry can be approved. In addition, any conditions for re-entry will need to be met before the student is approved. The student will receive written notification of any conditions when the leave of absence or withdrawal is processed.

Students who take a leave of absence or withdraw may return to the College by contacting the Office of the Class Deans. The deadline for doing so is July 1 for the fall semester or November 15 for spring semester. A student re-entering from a withdrawal is required to pay the $400 deposit at the time they notify the Office of the Class Deans of the date of return.

Re-entry after Withdrawal for Students Who Transferred

Students who withdraw from Allegheny College and transfer to another institution as a degree-seeking student must reapply as a transfer student if they wish to return to Allegheny College. The Director of Transfer Advising and the Registrar will work with these students to determine if they are best served by continuing under their existing Bulletin or moving to the current Bulletin, per the College’s Graduation Requirements Policy. The final decision is subject to the approval of the Registrar.

Dating Leaves and Withdrawals

Colleges and universities are required to accurately report the date that a student takes a leave or withdrawal. This date must be supported by appropriate institutional documentation. 

For end-of-semester leaves or withdrawals (those where the student completes the semester), the date of the leave or withdrawal will in all cases be the last day of exams for the last semester completed. Requests for end-of-semester leaves or withdrawals may be submitted before the end of the semester and will be dated to the last day of exams. A leave taken in between semesters but before the first class day of the next semester will also be dated to the last day of exams for the last semester completed. 

For leaves occurring during the semester (from the first day of classes until the last day of classes), if a student is deemed to have begun attendance at Allegheny College, the date of the leave or withdrawal will be the date on which the student submits the official Leave of Absence or Withdrawal Form. An exception to this would be a hospital stay or incarceration that was institutionally documented and which would have precluded the student from completing the form in a timely manner. In such cases the start date of the in-patient treatment or incarceration shall be used. However if a student does not submit the official Leave of Absence or Withdrawal form, and consequently fails or receives incomplete grades in all their courses that semester by reason of non-attendance, the withdrawal date will be based on the reported last day of attendance.

A student is regarded as having begun attendance if they have conducted academic activity as defined by federal regulations, principally that they are registered for courses AND have attended classes or submitted an academic assignment.

Students who are present in College housing or using a meal plan may be billed for those activities even if they have not begun attendance in classes. Students who withdraw from the College are expected to leave the campus within 48 hours. Short term exceptions beyond this deadline may be granted by the Dean for Student Life to allow the student sufficient time to make alternate arrangements.

Students who are deemed not to have begun attendance in a given semester will be placed on leave or withdrawn effective the end of the prior semester attended. 

In all cases of voluntary leaves or withdrawals, students have one business day to change their mind and rescind the leave or withdrawal. Requests to rescind a leave or withdrawal after that time will be forwarded to the Office of the Class Deans. 

Determining the date of leave or withdrawal has significant consequences for billing and financial aid, so students are advised to complete the Leave of Absence or Withdrawal Form in a timely fashion. Students are also advised in particular to consult with Financial Aid. 

If a student has questions about this process, they should consult with the Office of the Class Deans as soon as possible. 

Leaves of Absence and Withdrawal Form

Leaves of Absence and Withdrawal Form

This policy is under the purview of the Academic Standards and Awards Committee. Changes are subject to a vote of the faculty.

(March 2020, 27 April 2023)